Gonzalez serves up rare home run, Pearce hits his third (O’s win 3-2)

Before Mark Trumbo stepped to the plate in the fourth inning tonight, Orioles pitcher Miguel Gonzalez had allowed exactly one home run during the 2012 season.


It hadn’t occurred in his brief major league career, which consisted of three relief appearances with the Orioles before tonight. It happened once in 44 2/3 innings at Triple-A Norfolk.

Trumbo must not have studied history. He hit No. 21 to break a scoreless tie and give the Angels a 1-0 lead.

It didn’t last long. Steve Pearce hit his third, a three-run shot off Angels left-hander C.J. Wilson with the count full in the top of the fifth.

Orioles 3, Angels 1.

Wilson has allowed only six home runs this year, including two to Pearce. That’s not quite up to Gonzalez’s stingy standards, but it’s pretty impressive.

Making his first major league start, Gonzalez has given up three hits, walked one and struck out five in four innings.

Gonzalez earned this opportunity. He allowed three runs in 11 2/3 innings out of the bullpen against the Blue Jays, Red Sox and Indians.

At Norfolk, he went 3-2 with a 1.61 ERA in 14 appearances, including six starts. He allowed eight earned runs and 22 hits in those 44 2/3 innings, walked 10, struck out 53 and held opponents to a .143 average.

The Orioles needed a starter tonight. Gonzalez was the right choice given the few options available, no matter what happens the rest of the way.

Update: What’s not to like about Gonzalez?

The 28-year-old rookie, signed out of the Mexican League, held the potent Angels’ attack to one run and three hits in seven innings, with two walks and six strikeouts. He threw 100 pitches, the last one resulting in a double play. A leadoff walk to Trumbo didn’t come back to haunt him.

I don’t think Gonzalez’s expression has changed all night. He’s so calm and so in control.

Update II: Mike Trout homered off Darren O’Day in the eighth inning and Torii Hunter tripled, but Troy Patton retired Kendrys Morales on a pop up after Albert Pujols was walked intentionally.

The ninth inning was much calmer.

Jim Johnson retired the side in order for his 26th save, and Gonzalez earned his first major league victory.

Did someone order a shaving cream pie?

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