ORIOLES QUICK WRAP
Score: Twins 14, Orioles 5
Recap: Pedro Alvarez ripped an RBI double in his first O’s at-bat in the top of the first. It came on a 1-1 pitch from Ricky Nolasco. Alvarez also grounded out and flied out in his first O’s game. Miguel Gonzalez struggled again, allowing six runs and seven hits over 1 2/3. He has allowed 14 runs in 5 2/3 over three spring starts for an ERA of 22.24. Gonzalez has allowed six or more runs in two of his three starts. Hunter Harvey gave up five runs (two after he left) getting just one out in the last of the sixth when Minnesota scored five times. Parker Bridwell pitched a scoreless eighth. Jomar Reyes scored on an error by shortstop Heiker Meneses in the ninth.
Need to know: Perhaps taking a lead from Chris Davis against the Yankees earlier this spring, Alvarez tried to bunt twice versus the shift in the third inning, fouling one off and missing a second attempt. He eventually grounded out. Vance Worley threw two perfect innings with three strikeouts. Dylan Bundy gave up an unearned run in the fifth. The Schoop brothers - Jonathan and Sharlon, who came over today from minor league camp - both made an error. Christian Walker hit his second spring homer. The 14 runs allowed was the most by the O’s this spring. The Twins drew a sellout crowd of 8,596 at Hammond Stadium.
On deck: Monday, vs. Phillies in Sarasota, 1:05 p.m.
FORT MYERS, Fla. - The Orioles staked Miguel Gonzalez to a 3-0 lead this afternoon in the top of the first. But before the last of the second was over, Minnesota had scored six runs off Gonzalez, who recorded just five outs at Hammond Stadium.
Gonzalez struggled for the second time in three outings, allowing six runs and seven hits in 1 2/3. He gave up a three-run homer in the second to Trevor Plouffe. His ERA is 22.24 through three outings.
“I was just off a little bit,” Gonzalez said. “Flying open (on my mechanics). I wasn’t consistent down, ahead (on the count). That’s important. Guys are being aggressive. I’ve got to just try not to do too much.”
How much is Gonzalez concerned about the results right now, results that show he’s allowed 14 runs and 18 hits in just 5 2/3 innings?
“We all know that this game is all about the mental and momentum,” he said. “As soon as I got the first guy out, I felt pretty good. But things are not going my way right now. All I’ve got to do is keep working hard and don’t get down. Keep my head up and hopefully next time out be all right.”
Did the issue with his mechanics cause problems with the quality of his pitches or his command?
“Both. I think that is really important. Felt good in the ‘pen, but I need to take it out there in the game. Nothing is easy, man. You just have to stay mentally strong and work on things you need to work on and forget about today.”
A reporter asked Gonzalez is he is pressing after a season where he went 9-12 with a 4.91 ERA.
“Sometimes you push yourself to be better, to impress people. We all know what we are capable of doing and we all know that our teammates are going to be right there with you. It’s just a matter of staying positive and getting after it,” he said.
After Richard Rodriguez got the last out of the second, Vance Worley pitched two perfect innings. He fanned three over the third and fourth frames. But Dylan Bundy gave up an unearned run in the fifth when Jonathan Schoop misplayed a potential double play ball. Hunter Harvey allowed five runs (two after he left) in just a third of an inning in the sixth as Minnesota opened a 12-4 lead.
Not a good day for Orioles pitching and both Schoop brothers, Jonathan and Sharlon, who have each made an error in this game.
Christian Walker hit his second spring homer in the fifth.