Bud Norris faced 10 Blue Jays in the first two innings of today’s game. He fell behind on a bases-loaded walk in the second after hitting the previous batter.
A bad day? Not anymore.
Norris is cruising at Camden Yards, having retired eight in a row and 14 of the last 16 batters while holding a 3-1 lead. He’s back on the mound in the seventh with his pitch count at 96, having thrown only eight in the first and fifth.
Norris has allowed one run over his last two starts totaling 14 innings and his ERA is down to 3.76 in 81 1/3 innings.
Orioles starters have permitted two earned runs or fewer in 13 of the last 16 games, including today. The staff has allowed eight runs in the last six games, including seven over the past two days.
Today’s attendance: 33,901.
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Update: Darren O’Day stranded two runners in the seventh to keep the Orioles’ lead at 3-1.
Norris allowed one run and seven hits in 6 2/3 innings, with one walk, five strikeouts and a hit batter. He threw 112 pitches, 72 for strikes.
Norris has surrendered one run in his last two starts over 14 2/3 innings. Orioles starters have allowed two earned runs or fewer in 13 of the last 16 games.
Update II: The Orioles are clinging to a 3-2 lead after Brett Lawrie grounded an RBI single into left field off Ryan Webb.
The Orioles were still ahead 3-1 in the eighth after Jose Bautista was thrown out at the plate on Edwin Encarnacion’s double to left field off O’Day.
Nelson Cruz ran down the ball and fired to J.J. Hardy, who threw home for the out. Hardy made another perfect relay, as we’ve seen countless times.
Umpires reviewed the play to determine whether catcher Nick Hundley was in violation of collision rule 7.13, and the call was upheld. He didn’t block the plate without the ball.
Brian Matusz replaced O’Day with two outs and walked pinch-hitter Steve Tolleson. Webb entered the game and Lawrie greeted him with the run-scoring single.
Cruz made a sliding catch to retire Josh Thole and preserve the one-run lead.
Update III: Game over. The Orioles have won two of the first three games of this series with today’s 3-2 victory over the Blue Jays.
Zach Britton recorded his seventh save in eight opportunities, and the Orioles improved to 35-32. They trail the Blue Jays by 3 1/2 games in the American League East.
The Orioles are 13-10 in one-run games.
Norris’ ERA is down to 3.73.