Jim Johnson retired the Twins in order in the top of the seventh on only eight pitches, six of them strikes. He got two ground balls and struck out Denard Span.
With the Orioles clinging to a two-run lead, I would have let Johnson pitch the eighth, as well. And a few reporters here are in agreement.
However, Koji Uehara has entered the game, and you have to figure that Kevin Gregg will pitch the ninth if it’s a save situation.
Gregg hasn’t turned in a clean outing in five tries, and he was booed heavily in his last appearance while allowing two runs. But manager Buck Showalter isn’t going to avoid using him in a tight game three weeks into the season.
Let’s see how it turns out. Uehara has to hold the lead before we turn our attention to the ninth.
Instant update: Uehara gave up a run on two hits and his third walk of the season. He threw 24 pitches, 16 for strikes. Orioles 5, Twins 4.
Gregg is warming in the bullpen.