Tommy Hunter took a four-hit shutout into the sixth inning today, one more hit than Oakland’s Bartolo Colon allowed in his five scoreless frames.
Hunter retired the first two batters on fly balls, but Josh Reddick continued to torture the Orioles with a single into left field, and Yoenis Cespedes smoked a line drive into the left field corner that gave him a double and the A’s a 1-0 lead.
Third baseman Wilson Betemit made a leaping attempt, but the ball barely cleared his glove. It probably would have carried his leather into the corner.
Cespedes was 0-for-9 in the series before singling in the fourth. He was erased on Mark Reynolds’ sensational diving stop and throw to second that began a 3-6-3 double play.
Hunter has thrown 91 pitches, 57 for strikes. He’s permitted two runs in his last two starts covering 12 innings, and he’s not done today.
Orioles starters have allowed eight earned runs in their last 44 innings.
Today’s attendance: 31,793
Update: Seth Smith led off the seventh inning with his second home run of the season, increasing Oakland’s lead to 2-0. Darren O’Day is warming in the bullpen.
Hunter might be done after allowing two runs and seven hits, with one walk and two strikeouts. He’s thrown 103 pitches, 65 for strikes.
Colon has only thrown 67 pitches, 47 for strikes, in six innings. He’s retired 11 in a row.
Update II: Two infield hits and Colon’s throwing error put the tying runs in scoring position with one out in the ninth. Grant Balfour replaced Colon, who threw 106 pitches, with J.J. Hardy on third and Adam Jones on second.
Matt Wieters followed with a two-run double off the left field fence - the first runs charged to Colon on the road this season.
Balfour walked Chris Davis intentionally with pinch runner Endy Chavez at second, and Wilson Betemit homered to right-center field on a 3-1 pitch.
Orioles 5, A’s 2.
That’s Betemit’s first walk-off home run.
Are we having fun yet?