The Orioles have done this before this season - give up the lead, but still win the game. And they did it tonight at soggy Camden Yards as Matt Wieters knocked in three runs in the Orioles’ 4-3 win over Kansas City.
Wieters began the evening batting just .197 with an OPS of .572 this season against right-handed pitching, but had a two-run double in the first and a tie-breaking RBI double in the eighth off right-handers.
In a 3-3 tie, Adam Jones led off the eighth with a walk and reached second on a throwing error. He came around on Wieters’ double to left off Luke Hochevar.
Jim Johnson pitched the top of the ninth, recording his 12th save of the season and his career-best 33rd straight dating to last July 30, which is one off the club record of 34 in a row set by Randy Myers during the 1997 season.
Kansas City starter Ervin Santana began tonight with an ERA of 2.00, ranking seventh in the league, and was 3-0 with a 1.20 ERA over his previous four starts with a 13-inning scoreless streak.
Despite the gaudy stats, the Orioles scored three off him in the first inning. With one out, singles by Manny Machado and Nick Markakis put runners on the corners. A Jones single made it a 1-0 game. One out later, a Wieters’ two-run double made it 3-0.
Meanwhile, Wei-Yin Chen, coming off an outing in Seattle where he gave up five runs over four innings, gave up just two runs and nine hits (all singles) over 6 1/3 innings. He left after a 48-minute rain delay halted play in the top of the seventh with the Orioles leading 3-1.
But, not long after play resumed, Brian Matusz gave up a two-run homer to Alex Gordon to tie the game, 3-3. Matusz had not allowed any of the 26 runners he inherited since moving to the bullpen last season to score, but the streak ended there.
The tie ended in the last of the eighth, the Orioles had their latest win and improved to 6-4 in one-run games.
The Orioles improved to a season-best seven games over the .500 mark at 20-13. They have won three in a row, four of five, and eight of their last 12 games.