He hit it out in the 12th to give the Orioles a 7-6 win over the Angels. Was he thinking homer as he led off that inning?
“No shot. Was just trying to get on base,” Machado said. “Fell behind quick, so at that point just trying to make some contact and get on base. Made two other pitches after that and he (Cory Rasmus) hung one. That was the ballgame.
“It was a blast. Once I hit it I knew it was out, and the excitement ran through my body. First one. I got chills running around the bases. Just excited.”
In their last 22 games, the Angels are 1-3 against the Orioles and 15-3 against everyone else.
The Orioles are now 12-3 with seven straight wins in extra innings. Do they just feel confident when the game gets that far?
“I guess you could say that in a way,” Machado said. “Once you’re going into extras, it’s our bullpen in key situations. Have to go up there and grind it out, one pitch at a time, one batter at a time. That is just how we play around here.”
Machado was asked if these Orioles are starting to remind him of the 2012 Orioles team that made the playoffs.
“Yes, in a way,” he said. “It’s a different team but we have good chemistry in the clubhouse like we did back then. Obviously the bullpen as well. I think this is a better team. I think we are more focused and have our minds right about where we need to get to.
“At the end, you don’t want the (opponent) bullpen to come in and shove it. We just needed those key hits and we came up clutch.”
Chris Tillman got a no-decision tonight as he gave up five runs (three earned) and six hits in five innings, his shortest start since June 5.
“Not good enough,” Tillman said. “I felt good physically, made some good pitches but not consistent enough. A little better command of the fastball and usage of the offspeed pitches, and it’s a different story. They made some big adjustments from five days ago and so did we. Our bullpen came up big for me and the team, and it’s huge.
“Any win’s big this time of the year. We had a tough road trip. Had the off-day, everyone’s fresh. It’s good to get off to a good start, especially knowing what kind of team these guys are. They’re going to run out some of the best pitchers in the league, and there’s another game tomorrow we’ve got to try to win.”
Tillman said the feeling in the Orioles clubhouse right now is similar to 2012.
“We’ve got the same core, same big guys in the clubhouse, and I think that’s the most important thing, is what happens in here,” he said. “These guys, they lead is what they do. They go out every day, show up to play and give it 100 percent every single night. You don’t see that very often, even from other teams in the league.”
Machado talked about the big Tuesday night crowd of 36,882.
“I was telling J.J. (Hardy) that. We were looking around during the national anthem,” Machado said. “It was a big crowd on a Tuesday night. You know the fans are supporting us. This is going to be a big season for us, hope they keep supporting us like they have.”