The Wrap: AL
Quote of the Night
"Our offense can't be shut down. ... A few innings here and there, but our lineup is just too strong from top to bottom."
-- Orioles center fielder Adam Jones feeling pretty good after hitting a two-run homer in the 10th inning. Given the Orioles' 11 consecutive losing seasons, he might want to sit the next couple of plays out.
Baltimore's Alfredo Simon gave up three solo home runs in the first two innings before leaving with elbow soreness. Texas's Brandon McCarthy allowed three runs over six innings and the game stayed tied at three until the 10th inning. Led by Adam Jones's two-run homer, the Orioles put up four in the top of the 10th and then watched as closer George Sherrill flirted with disaster before earning a save despite giving up two runs. The star of the game was the Orioles bullpen that was pressed into 8 2/3 innings of relief after Simon's departure and gave up just two runs (by the aforementioned Sherrill). For the third straight series, the Orioles are a win away from a sweep.
Chicago White Sox at Detroit Tigers
The game was postponed due to rain after just a 10-minute delay as officials didn't see a clearing in the weather to get the game in. Detroit will take advantage of the unexpected off day by pushing back the scheduled start of rookie Rick Porcello to Sunday and go with Armando Galarraga on Wednesday.
Ken Griffey Jr. is back and all is right in Seattle. The Mariners won their fifth straight thanks to a throwing error in the 10th inning by Angels reliever Scot Shields. Shields threw wildly to first base, which allowed Franklin Gutierrez to score the game-winning run. The win came in Seattle's home opener which also was the first time Mariners fans got to see the man once known as "The Kid" back with the team. Griffey went 1 for 3 with a walk, singling in his first at bat in his first game as a member of the home team at Safeco Field, or as it's also known as, The House That Griffey Built.
Yankees pitcher A.J. Burnett turned in his second straight impressive performance, carrying a no-hitter into the seventh inning before settling for a two-run, three-hit, nine-strikeout performance over eight innings. New York bounced back from Monday's 15-5 drubbing by chipping two runs off of Tampa Bay starter Matt Garza before clubbing reliever Dan Wheeler for four runs in the ninth inning. The highlight (or lowlight, depending on how you look at it) of Monday's game was Nick Swisher's one inning cameo as a pitcher. Swisher stuck to hitting on Tuesday and boosted his team-high batting average to .458 thanks to a 2 for 4 evening that saw him hit his fourth homer of the season.
Carl Pavano had a much better performance in his second start for Cleveland, tallying eight strikeouts and giving up just four runs in six innings but still took the loss. Pavano got torched in his first start of the season last week against Texas when he gave up nine runs in just one inning. Kansas City catcher Jack Buck did most of the damage against the Indians, blasting two home runs (a solo shot and a grand slam) to drive in five runs.
Minnesota's Joe Crede hit a double in the 11th inning to give the Twins a victory in what was a pitchers' duel. Blue Jays starter Ricky Romero and Twins pitcher Glen Perkins both tossed eight innings of two-run ball but neither factored into the decision. Perkins managed to do what few pitchers have been able to do so far this season: hold Toronto's offense in check. The Blue Jays currently lead the majors in average, runs scored, hits, doubles, RBI and total bases.
The struggling Red Sox collected another loss to fall to 2-6 on the season as Travis Buck narrowly legged out an infield single to score the winning run in the bottom of the 12th inning. Despite the loss, the bigger concern for Boston may be the health of starting pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka. In his shortest outing in the majors, Matsuzaka gave up five runs on five hits in one inning of work before leaving with arm fatigue.
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