It was 90 degrees at Camden Yards tonight as Miguel Gonzalez threw his first pitch to Tigers leadoff hitter Omar Infante. It probably rose to 92 as Infante swung through a slider for the first out.
Freddy Garcia is now classified as a flood zone.
Before tonight, the Orioles ranked second in the American League with 273 runs scored. The Tigers ranked third with 268.
The Tigers led the AL with a .279 average. The Orioles ranked second at .276.
The two teams were tied for the AL lead in hits with 524.
Is everyone ready for a pitching duel?
Apparently, Tigers third baseman Miguel Cabrera has other ideas. He’s no longer tied with Manny Machado for the most hits in the majors after launching a two-run homer in the top of the first inning.
Cabrera’s 16th home run came on a 91 mph fastball after Gonzalez had also thrown a 70 mph curveball, another 91 mph fastball and 81 mph changeup.
The Orioles hadn’t surrendered a run in the last 13 2/3 innings before Cabrera muscled up.
Gonzalez didn’t allow a home run in his two previous starts after coming off disabled list. He hasn’t permitted a home run in five of his nine starts.
Gonzalez is 0-1 in three May starts, and the Orioles have scored four runs while he’s been on the mound. According to STATS, his 1.93 runs of support this month is the third-lowest in the American League behind Felix Doubront (1.38) and Vidal Nuno (1.59).
The Orioles have hit 45 home runs in May, the third-highest total in club history behind the 58 in 1987 and the 47 in 1999, according to STATS. I seem to recall that the baseballs in ‘87 were wound tighter than Carlos Zambrano.
Larry Sheets led the club with 31 home runs, one more than Eddie Murray and four more than Cal Ripken Jr. Fred Lynn hit 23, Terry Kennedy 18, Mike Young 16, Jim Dwyer 15 and Ray Knight and Ken Gerhart 14.
Rick Burleson hit two in 62 games. Yes, he played for the Orioles.
Update: Matt Wieters’ sacrifice fly in the second inning scored Adam Jones, who led off with a single, and reduced Detroit’s lead to 2-1.
Jones had moved to third base on Chris Davis’ single. Davis is batting .423 in his last 21 games since May 9, and .559 in his last nine.
Down on the farm, Tsuyoshi Wada had allowed five runs (three earned) and four hits in three innings at Triple-A Norfolk. The two unearned runs followed second baseman Yamaico Navarro’s eighth error this season, and third in two nights.
Update II: Jones hit a two-run homer in the third to give the Orioles a 3-2 lead.
Jones’ 11th home run of the season came on a 93 mph fastball from Max Scherzer, who walked Nick Markakis with two outs.
Update III: The Tigers tied the game in the fourth on Avisail Garcia’s two-out RBI single, and they took a 4-3 lead in the fifth on a bases-loaded fielder’s choice grounder from Victor Martinez.
In both innings, Gonzalez issued a walk before the next batter delivered a run.
Gonzalez’s line so far: five innings, six hits, four runs, three walks, four strikeouts, one home run. He’s thrown 84 pitches, 49 for strikes.
Cabrera singled in the fifth. Machado now needs two hits to catch him. He’s struck out and lined to left field.
Down on the farm, Wada was charged with six runs (four earned) and eight hits in 4 2/3 innings, with two walks, no strikeouts and one hit batter. He threw 82 pitches, 51 for strikes. He still hasn’t gone more than five innings in his four starts.
Not the progress that the Orioles wanted to see from Wada, whose 30-day rehab assignment ends on June 15.
Update IV: Garcia homered to right field in the sixth to increase the Tigers’ lead to 5-3.
Gonzalez is up to 105 pitches. Troy Patton was warming in the bullpen.
Tonight’s attendance: 46,249. The third sellout of the season.