Jimenez goes six innings (Orioles, Rays finish in 3-3 tie in 10 innings)


Score: Orioles 3, Rays 3 (10 innings)

Recap: Ubaldo Jimenez allowed two runs and five hits over six innings and retired 10 of the last 12 Rays that he faced. James Loney hit a two-run homer off him in the first. Delmon Young hit his first spring home run. Rule 5 pick Michael Almanzar had a tie-breaking RBI single in the fifth after Alexi Casilla’s gift double on a ball that left fielder Brandon Guyer lost in the sun. Almanzar was 7-for-33 with nine RBIs after the hit. Rays starter Alex Cobb struck out 12 and didn’t walk a batter in seven innings. Orioles reliever Evan Meek allowed the tying run in the ninth, the first run and two hits he’s yielded this spring.

Need to know: Young is heating up. He was mired in a 1-for-19 slump before collecting six hits in 11 at-bats. He also made a nice catch against the fence in left to strand a runner in the seventh. How many right-handed hitting corner outfield/DH types can make the club from a group that includes Young, Nolan Reimold and Steve Pearce?

On deck: Sunday, home vs. Pirates, 1:05 p.m.

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. - Ubaldo Jimenez joined Miguel Gonzalez today as the only Orioles pitchers to complete six innings.

Jimenez allowed two runs, both coming on James Loney’s homer in the first inning, and five hits. He walked one, struck out one and hit a batter.

Brad Brach was warming in the bullpen.

Jayson Nix singled off Jimenez with one out in the fifth, but Alexi Casilla made a diving stop up the middle and flipped to Jemile Weeks to get the force at second. Steve Clevenger threw out Brandon Guyer trying to steal to end the inning.

Defense counts the most in the competition for backup catcher. Worth a reminder.

Ben Zobrist drew a four-pitch walk with one out in the sixth, but Jimenez retired the next two batters on fly balls.

Jimenez pitched in a Triple-A game in his last start due to the rainouts Monday in Clearwater and Sarasota. He allowed two hits, walked two and struck out seven in 3 2/3 scoreless innings in Fort Myers.

Jimenez threw 66 pitches on Monday. His count stood at 57 today as he returned to the mound for the sixth, and ended at 72 (42 strikes).

In three Grapefruit League starts, Jimenez has allowed six runs and nine hits over 10 innings.

The Orioles tied the game in the fourth on Henry Urrutia’s double to center field, Delmon Young’s single and Clevenger’s double play, and they took the lead in the fifth on Casilla’s gift double, a ground out and Michael Almanzar’s RBI single to left.

Casilla reached when Guyer lost the ball in the sun in left field.

Almanzar produced his ninth RBI.

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