Garcia struggling early, Hardy extends hitting streak (O’s down 5-2)

Freddy Garcia isn’t making the Padres regret their decision to release him in spring training.

Garcia has faced 11 batters in two innings and allowed two runs and five hits, with one walk and one strikeout. He’s thrown 40 pitches, 24 for strikes.

The Orioles turned a 5-4-3 double play on Carlos Quentin’s ground ball to bail out Garcia in the first inning, but No. 9 hitter John Baker collected his first two RBIs of the season with a two-out single in the second.

Garcia took a perfect game into the seventh inning in his Orioles debut in Anaheim, but he absorbed the loss against the Royals on Thursday after allowing four runs and five hits over six innings.

Shortstop J.J. Hardy cut the deficit in half by leading off the bottom of the second inning with his seventh home run of the season, and his fourth in the last 10 games.

Hardy also extended his hitting streak to 11 games, tying Manny Machado for the longest by an Oriole this season.

Hardy is 14-for-39 (.359) with four homers, eight RBIs and six runs scored during the streak.

Machado singled in the first inning, but he grounded into a double play to end the second after back-to-back walks to Steve Pearce and Nate McLouth.

McLouth was robbed of a hit in the first inning on a sensational diving catch from Padres shortstop Everth Cabrera. McLouth is 5-for-30 lifetime against right-hander Jason Marquis.

Update: Garcia lasted only 3 2/3 innings today, and he’s charged with four runs and seven hits, with two walks, one strikeout and one home run.

Manager Buck Showalter reached his limit after Garcia walked Cabrera on his 75th pitch (44 strikes).

T.J. McFarland let one inherited runner score on Will Venable’s double.

By the way, the auto-correct on my iPhone changed “Venable” to “Bendable” while I typed the Padres’ lineup today. That may be accurate. I really don’t know the guy.

Update II: Matt Wieters led off the bottom of the fourth inning with his sixth home run of the season.

San Diego 4, Orioles 2.

Wieters struck out three times last night.

Update III: McFarland is charged with a run in the sixth, and the Orioles trail 5-2.

Tommy Hunter replaced McFarland with runners on the corners and two outs. Carlos Quentin popped up to shallow right field, but Ryan Flaherty lost the ball in the sun and it fell for a gift RBI single.

Yes, the sun actually came out. Not at a good time for the Orioles, however.

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