Adam Jones is from San Diego. I never thought of that in connection with his blowing bubbles while making fantastic catches, and other things. Today was Adam Jones' day to perform. And perform he did. Bud Norris made his second start for the Orioles tonight, and while his line looks stellar, it was not without some bumps in the road. But in the end, he was brought to rotation to win games, and you cannot complain with a win.
Nate McLouth started things out in grand fashion off Edinson Volquez by lacing a double on the first pitch of the game. But Manny Machado was not able to advance him. McLouth would steal third during Nick Markakis' at bat, but Nick was unable to score the run from third with less than two outs. But up steps Adam Jones. On the 8th pitch of his at bat, he would lace a single up the middle, scoring McLouth from third. This nice piece of hitting would be followed up by some terrible baserunning, as he was tagged out following an infield single from Chris Davis. I'm not sure what he was thinking, but MASN showed him taking responsibility for his error. Perhaps he was thinking about Elliott Smith on his birthday. Or perhaps not.
In the bottom of the first, Will Venable would lead off with a triple hit into the left field gap, which rivals Yellowstone. But Norris would do some pitching against a Padre team that had been playing better of late. He would get a ground out to a drawn in Machado. He would get a strikeout by Chase Headley, and then a ground out to first off the bat of Yonder Alonso. The Padres started the game off 0-3 with runners in scoring position. Sound familiar?
The Orioles would go quietly in the second. In the home half of the second, Jedd Gyorko would draw a leadoff walk and Alexi Amarista would single him to third to create another man on third with nobody out. Norris would strike out Logan Forsythe and after a nine pitch battle, would induce a double play off the bat of Nick Hundley. The third inning would come and go pretty quickly. But that would be interrupted in the top of the fourth with an absolute moon shot off the bat of Adam Jones. But Volquez would continue to stymie the Orioles batter after batter, and the Orioles did not really mount another threat off Volquez, who managed to go six solid against your Orioles.
Bud Norris would sail along in the fourth and fifth. After the Orioles went down in the sixth with a minor threat (that included a third hit by the good doctor), the Padres would make some hay in the bottom of the sixth. Chris Denorfia would lead off with a single to right. Headley would swing at the first pitch and single to right as well. But this time Norris was unable to keep the Padres off the board. Yonder Alonso would single to right again, and this time it would score Denorfia. But danger was ever present, as it was first and second with nobody out. But Norris would bear down, getting Gyorko to strike out, Amarista to fly out and Forsythe to pop out. Threat averted. And this would be it for Norris as his spot was due up second in the top of the 7th.
The Orioles would go meekly in the seventh. Tommy Hunter would allow a walk in his inning of work, but he would pitch around it. In the top of the 8th, desperate for an insurance run, the Orioles would come through thanks to Adam Jones yet again. Machado and Markakis would be retired, but a little two out magic was in order. Earlier in the game, MASN highlighted the Orioles struggles with two outs. But after scoring a run with two down in the first, the Orioles would do it again in the 8th. Jones would lace his fourth hit of the night. He would then steal second, and cruise home on a hard hit double by Chris Davis. Matt Wieters who was befuddled by the dimensions tonight, would pop out with Davis on second.
Brian Matusz and Darren O'Day combine for a quiet eighth. The Orioles put some base runners together in the ninth, and again would come through with two outs. Hardy would single and Roberts would walk to open the frame. But Alexi Casilla, pinch hitting for Darren O'Day, could not execute a sacrifice bunt, and Hardy was retired at third. McLouth would harmlessly fly out to right for the second out. But up steps Manny Machado and he would hit soft fly ball to shallow right, dropping in and scoring Roberts from second. Markakis was retired with Adam Jones in the on deck circle. Jim Johnson would come in and put the Padres away quietly. O's win, 4-1.