J.J. Hardy was in a 7-for-70 slump before doubling in the first inning tonight and racing home on a wild pitch by Indians starter Derek Lowe.
The lead didn’t last long. Asdrubal Cabrera homered off Miguel Gonzalez in the bottom of the inning, and the Indians left the bases load.
Gonzalez threw 25 pitches in the inning. Lowe threw 26.
Gonzalez surrendered one home run with Triple-A Norfolk. He’s given up one in each of his three starts with the Orioles.
Since June 29, 19 of the last 21 home runs allowed by Orioles pitching have been solo shots. Only Albert Pujols (two-run homer on July 8) and Jhonny Peralta (three-run homer on July 13) have homered with men on base.
Eight of the last 10 homers by the Orioles have come with men on base.
Also from the Orioles’ PR staff: The Orioles have won 12 games in which they didn’t get a hit with runners in scoring position. They have nine wins while getting only one hit with RISP.
In their last 10 games before tonight, the Orioles have been held to one hit with RISP four times and were held hitless with RISP four times.
Tonight, the Orioles put runners on second and third with no outs in the second inning and didn’t score. They wasted a four-pitch walk to Wilson Betemit and a double by Chris Davis. Nick Markakis was walked intentionally with two outs, but Hardy flied to left.
The Orioles are 7-0 in one-run games dating back to June 22.
Down on the farm, Brian Matusz has given up a hit, walked a batter and struck out one in two scoreless innings for Norfolk.
Single-A Frederick’s Dylan Bundy served up a leadoff home run to Winston-Salem’s Keenyn Walker in the first inning. He’s permitted one run and four hits in two innings, with no walks and one strikeout.
Update: So much for lost opportunities.
The Orioles scored six runs in the third inning, the last three on a Ryan Flaherty homer to right field.
Orioles 7, Indians 1.
Mark Reynolds had a two-run double, giving him eight RBIs in his last five games. He had the big two-run single in the eighth inning yesterday.
Update II: Jim Thome has doubled and hit his 610th career home run, breaking a tie with Sammy Sosa for seventh on the all-time list. Ken Griffey is sixth with 630.
Orioles 8, Indians 1.
Lowe is gone after walking Adam Jones in the fourth. So far, he’s charged with eight runs in three-plus innings, and all seven hits were for extra bases.
Matusz has allowed four runs and seven hits in four innings.
Update III: Matusz allowed six runs and nine hits in six innings, with one walk and four strikeouts. He threw 101 pitches, 63 for strikes.
Bundy allowed one run and seven hits in 4 2/3 innings, with one walk and six strikeouts.
Gonzalez has held the Indians to one run and four hits in six innings, with two walks and five strikeouts. He’s thrown 92 pitches, 63 for strikes.
Unless the Indians erupt in the seventh, Gonzalez will turn in the Orioles third consecutive quality start, which hasn’t happened since May 25-May 27.
Update IV: Jack Hannahan homered off Gonzalez in the seventh. Both runs off Gonzalez came on the long ball.
Gonzalez is charged with two runs and seven hits in 6 2/3 innings, with two walks, five strikeouts and a hit batter. He threw 114 pitches, 79 for strikes.