BOSTON - The Orioles will gain two players for the nightcap of their doubleheader against the Red Sox, with reliever Preston Guilmet being recalled and third baseman Manny Machado coming off the suspended list.
Bud Norris threw two innings in his simulated game, with the roster of hitters including coaches Wayne Kirby and Einar Diaz, and vice president of baseball operations Brady Anderson.
Kirby lined a ball into the left field corner. Norris won’t hear the end of it.
Norris retreated to the dugout after the first “inning’ to truly simulate an actual game.
As for Game 1 of today’s doubleheader, Miguel Gonzalez registered his first quality start since coming off the disabled list. He allowed two runs (one earned) over eight innings in a 3-2 loss to the Red Sox at Fenway Park.
“That’s the kind of Miggy we’re going to need,” said manager Buck Showalter. “He was solid. I thought he deserved a chance to finish off that eighth inning. He had some real low-duress innings. He was solid. Unfortunately, (Jon) Lester was as good. And we were fortunate to be in it. They gave us a couple runs.
“I thought everybody threw the ball well.”
Showalter used one other relief pitcher, left-hander T.J. McFarland, who took the loss after allowing an infield single to pinch-hitter Jonny Gomes and a walk-off broken-bat bloop single to pinch-hitter Jonathan Herrera. Gomes had moved up on David Ross’ sacrifice bunt.
“Mac gave up a ground ball and a so-so bunt at best and a ball that broke the guy’s bat in half. What are you going to do?” Showalter said.
“I was real proud of the pitchers today, especially Miggy. But you’re facing two pitchers there (Lester and Koji Uehara) in this game who are, what, in the top seven or eight in the American League, which to me means in baseball because with the DH here that’s as good as it gets.”
Ryan Webb and Brian Matusz warmed in the eighth, but Showalter brought in McFarland in the ninth. Two left-handed hitters were due up and Showalter knew Red Sox manager John Farrell would pinch-hit for them. Right-handers are batting .348 against Matusz.
McFarland allowed one run in June. He’s been one of the more dependable arms in the bullpen, though a tie game in the ninth isn’t his typical spot. Showalter said the idea of McFarland being able to go multiple innings if the game moved past regulation “had something to do with it.”
Also, Showalter wasn’t going to use Zach Britton and Darren O’Day in both ends of the doubleheader. He would have gone to one or both if the Orioles were ahead.
“I like Mac there by what you saw,” Showalter said. “He gets a ground ball and broke a bat in half. Mac’s throwing the ball good. I’m really not going to pitch Darren (O’Day) or Zach (Britton) but one of these two games. We didn’t have many options there and Mac was our best option and he presented himself real well. I was proud of him. He threw the ball good again.
“You’ve seen how good he’s pitched. Mac’s throwing the ball as well as anyone down there. It’s just one of those things where you go, ‘Gosh, we were lucky to be in it.’ Just couldn’t push it over with a base hit somewhere.”
The game featured three errors by the Red Sox and one by the Orioles in the first 2 1/2 innings.
“It’s uncharacteristic at this level,” Showalter said. “I don’t know what else Stevie (Pearce) could have done. That’s one of those slow-developing balls that didn’t work out that way.”
Gonzalez tied his career high by going eight innings.
“It’s a good feeling to go a little bit more that what I’ve been going,” he said. “Command-wise was good. Overall we played a good game.”
Gonzalez had thrown 43 pitches after two innings, but made it through the eighth at 113.
“Just try not to think too much and make my pitches,” he said. “I was working down, so that was important. My splitty was good today. My slider. I thought everything was working well. Caleb (Joseph) did a good job back there by mixing pitches.”
Gonzalez felt more in sync today.
“Yeah, under control a little bit more,” he said. “I told myself not to do too much, stay aggressive, down in the zone, especially against a team like this that has a good lineup. We came up a little short.
“T.J.’s been throwing the ball really well. You can’t do anything about that. It’s baseball.
“He’s been our guy. He’s been really good overall. He kept the ball down. Broken-bat single, a ground ball to J.J. (Hardy), little things didn’t go our way. He’s been doing really good.”
Here’s the Red Sox’s lineup for Game 2:
Brock Holt 3B
Daniel Nava RF
Dustin Pedroia 2B
David Ortiz DH
Mike Napoli 1B
Stephen Drew SS
Jonny Gomes LF
A.J. Pierzynski C
Mookie Betts CF
John Lackey RHP