Monday, June 20, 2016

Wieters leads O's hot bats to outslug Jays

 Matt Wieters went 4-for-5 with a homer and four RBIs and Jonathan Schoop homered and drove in three to help Baltimore outslug Toronto, 11-6, in Sunday's series win at Camden Yards.
The victory keeps the O's in sole possession of first place in the American League East and is their Major League-leading 26th home win.
"It's important to win games because when it comes down to it at the end, the teams that are going to win the division and the teams that are going to make the playoffs are the teams that have won the most games. So no matter who we are playing, it's nice [to win at home]," Wieters said. "When you plays teams 19 times, everybody kind of knows each other pretty well, so you're going to have to kind of do some things a little bit different than you normally would."
Eight of the O's starting nine had at least one hit as Baltimore went 19-for-41 on the afternoon, scoring three runs in the first, fourth and seventh innings.
Blue Jays Opening Day starter Marcus Stroman continued his slide, lasting just 3 2/3 innings and allowing seven earned runs as his ERA ballooned to 5.23. O's starter Chris Tillman also fell short of a quality start, allowing four runs -- on a pair of two-run homers toDevon Travis and Troy Tulowitzki -- over five innings.
"Our guys did a really good job swinging the bats, and it was plenty good to get a win," Stroman said. "It's extremely frustrating not to be able to do my job. It was a tough one."
O's bats break out: Baltimore collected 19 hits and recorded its first double-digit-run game since June 2. Wieters entered the game 2-for-27 in his past eight games and tied a career high with four hits (last done in 2013), falling a triple short of the cycle. Schoop hammered reliever Jesse Chavez's pitch for a two-run shot in the seventh inning, while Chris Davishad three hits and scored three runs.
"They got really good offense, and we've got really good offense," Schoop said. "We can score a lot of runs in one inning, and they can do it, too. This division's got really good offense, but today, we had a big offensive game, and we came out on top."
The daily double: Tulowitzki put the Blue Jays on the board with a two-run shot in the top of the second inning. According to Statcast™, Tulowitzki's first hit since returning from the disabled list was projected to travel 404 feet and left his bat at 105 mph. Two batters later, Travis added a two-run shot of his own as the Blue Jays took an early 4-3 lead, but they were unable to hang on.
"He looks good," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said of Travis. "We've always known that he can hit, and he's showing it again."
In a flash: With Manny Machado starting his four-game suspension on Sunday, Ryan Flaherty stepped up and stepped in with no problem. The utility infielder went 2-for-4 with two RBIs and a run scored.
"He takes it seriously, being there for the team, and he's got over 100 plate appearances," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said of Flaherty. "We are fortunate to be able to move him around and give us what we need." More >
"It's better getting a win when you're out there sweating. It's a little bit easier to sleep." --Wieters
Tillman (10-1) is the first Orioles starter since Erik Bedard in 2007 to win nine consecutive decisions.
"I take a lot of pride getting deep in the ballgame and getting my team the chance to win, period," he said. "The record, you kind of throw it out the window, but you've got to fight to stay in that game and give your team the chance to win, and that's what I take a lot of pride in."
Home-plate umpire Dale Scott left Sunday's game in the bottom of the second inning after a ball hit him in the groin. Scott was replaced behind the plate by first-base umpire Bob Davidson, who led the three-man crew the rest of the afternoon.
Ezequiel Carrera came within several inches of leading off the game with a solo home run. It would have been his second homer in as many games, but the deep fly ball to right field went on the wrong side of the foul pole. Scott agreed to a crew-chief review, but following a brief delay, it was ruled that the call on the field stood.
Gibbons won his challenge in the bottom of the second inning. Baltimore third baseman Flaherty hit an RBI single to left field, but when the relay throw came back into the infield, third baseman Darwin Barney made a quick throw to first. Flaherty was initially called safe, but replays showed that his foot came off the bag. The call on the field was overturned, and Flaherty was called out.
Gibbons then lost his challenge in the top of the seventh. With a runner on first and one out, Carrera hit a ground ball to shortstop. J.J. Hardy, who threw to second for the forceout, and then the throw to first was late. Toronto thought second baseman Schoop wasn't on second base when he caught the ball and made the turn, but the call on the field was later confirmed.
Blue Jays: Toronto will enjoy an off-day on Monday before the club opens a two-game Interleague series against the D-backs on Tuesday at 7:07 p.m. ET at Rogers Centre. Right-hander Marco Estrada will get the call in the series opener, and he has allowed five hits or fewer in 10 consecutive starts, which is a franchise record.
Orioles: Baltimore will go to Texas for a makeup of April 17's game and a quick one-day road trip on Monday. Kevin Gausman will try to rebound after allowing six runs on seven hits in his last start against the Red Sox. He has a 3.68 ERA in three career games (two starts) against Texas. First pitch is scheduled for 8:05 p.m. ET.

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