Jeremy Guthrie returned to the mound today for the first time since July 7th when he had to leave in the third inning with an illness. He missed one start due to the virus and got a few days off for the All Star break, and it looks like the rest did him good. It was one of his strongest outings of the season and the first time he's looked dominant in weeks. He pitched 8 innings allowing just 3 hits, walking 1 and striking out 5. He IS Jeremy Guthrie, after all, so two of those three hits were home runs. That won't help his 1.8 HR/9 rate this season, but overall that is pretty much the only bad thing you can say about Guthrie today.
The O's offense made up for a lackluster day yesterday by putting up 10 runs on 11 hits and a lot of help from the White Sox pitching and defense. In the first inning Brian Roberts singled, stole second, went to third when catcher Ramon Castro threw the ball into center field, and scored on a wild pitch. Then in the fifth inning, the Orioles loaded the bases on an Adam Jones single, a Nick Markakis walk, and an Aubrey Huff single. White Sox starter Jose Contreras threw his second wild pitch of the day to bring in Adam Jones, and then hit Melvin Mora to load the bases again.
That'd be the end of the line for Contreras, who was relieved by Aaron Poreda. Poreda walked in two runs and was replaced by DJ Carrasco. With the score 4-1, Gregg Zaun singled into left field to score Melvin Mora, making the Orioles 5th run of the game the first to be knocked in by a hit. With one out and the bases loaded, Cesar Izturis hit a ground ball to second. Chris Getz made to tag Zaun in the basepath, but Zaun stopped in his tracks forcing him to throw to first to get Izturis. The White Sox would tag Zaun for the third out but not before Luke Scott scored the 6th run of the game.
It wasn't until the 9th inning that the Orioles decided to score a few runs the traditional way. After retiring Markakis for the first out, Tony Pena gave up three straight hits to Aubrey Huff, Melvin Mora, and Luke Scott. Huff scored on Luke's double, and then Gregg Zaun topped off his great day by popping a three run HR to right field.
Tomorrow the Orioles will be in New York where they'll attempt to get their first win at New Yankee Stadium. David Hernandez pitches game one against Andy Pettitte (who's having a mediocre year but who is 25-6 in his career against the Orioles). Game two is Rich Hill vs. Sergio Mitre (making his Yankee debut). Rich Hill vs the Yankees will probably be pretty awful. Game three on Wednesday will be Jason Berken vs. AJ Burnett.