Tommy Hunter has served up three more home runs in four innings tonight, including two to Rangers third baseman Adrian Belte and a grand slam to Mitch Moreland.
Beltre’s two-run shot in the fourth broke a 1-1 tie, and Moreland’s slam later in the inning gave the Rangers an 8-1 lead. Hunter faced eight batters in the inning and didn’t retire any of them.
Beltre added a third home run off Kevin Gregg in the fourth, giving him two in the inning and five RBIs on the night.
Rangers 10, Orioles 1.
This is the five-year anniversary of the Orioles’ 30-3 loss to the Rangers. What a way to acknowledge it.
Hunter has surrendered 32 homers this season. He began the night tied with Ervin Santana for the most allowed with 29.
Of those 32 home runs from Hunter, 19 are solo shots, 10 are two-run shots, one is a three-run blast and two are grand slams.
Before tonight, Hunter was one of three pitchers in the majors to allow more home runs (29) than walks (23) - with a minimum of 13 homers surrendered - joining Colby Lewis (16-14) and Blake Beavan (17-14).
Beltre is 7-for-13 with three home runs lifetime against Hunter, who was relieved by Gregg with a runner on first and no outs in the fourth. Steve Johnson must not be the long man tonight, perhaps a further indication that he’ll start Saturday night against the Blue Jays at Camden Yards.
Johnson could use the work. An inning or two might not be such a bad thing.
Nick Markakis is 2-for-2 with an RBI. He began the night hitting .331 (53-for-160) with 10 doubles, a triple, five homers, 16 RBIs, 26 runs scored and an .884 OPS in 38 games in the leadoff spot.
UPDATE: Markakis is now 3-for-3, including a two-run triple in the fifth. He’s knocked in all three of the Orioles’ runs.
Down on the farm, Triple-A Norfolk’s Jake Arrieta allowed one run and two hits in six innings, with five walks, eight strikeouts and one wild pitch. He threw 96 pitches, 56 for strikes.
Brian Matusz, making back-to-back one-inning appearances, struck out the side in the seventh.
UPDATE II: J.C. Romero gave up a run and two hits in the fifth, and Johnson allowed a run and two hits in the seventh.
Tonight’s outing could amount to a side session for Johnson if he’s going to start on Saturday.
Romero has allowed four runs (three earned) and seven hits in four innings with the Orioles.
Matt Wieters left the game with a bruised right shoulder, courtesy of a foul tip earlier in the night. He’ll undergo precautionary X-rays.
UPDATE III: X-rays on Wieters’ right shoulder were negative.