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Tuesday, April 11, 2006



Welcome to the majors, Jason Hammel. Enjoy your stay, because after tonight's effort, you probably won't be up much longer.

The O's didn't waste any time tonight on the offensive side of things. After consecutive flyouts by Newhan and Roberts, Melvin Mora took Hammel deep. 1-0 O's at the end of the first.

The Rays had an answer, though, and that was Ty Wiggington. In the bottom of the 2nd, Ty Wigginton answered Melvin Mora's home run with a shot off Kris Benson, tying the score at 1.

But before you could say, well, just about anything, the O's broke the game open. The top of the third inning started with a Javy Lopez strikeout, but that was followed by Luis Matos and B-Rob singles, making it first and third with 1 out. David Newhan, then, took a page out of last nights book and got an RBI infield single. Melvin made it 2 outs with a pop up to Travis Lee at first base, but the O's clutch hitting continued with a Miguel Tejada shot to right center that was oh-so-close to a home run. 4-1 O's.

In the bottom of the inning the Rays threatened again. With Crawford on first and 2 outs, Travis Lee took the ball for a ride, unfortunately for Rays fans that ride ended on the warning track and was caught by David Newhan.

The O's struck again in the top of the 4th, leading it off with a Ramon Hernandez double to the right-center field gap. Millar followed it up with a single to make it 1st and 3rd with no outs. The rally kept going when Javy Lopez walked on 4 pitches, but Luis Matos put it in serious jepoardy when he struck out. Call B-Rob Ken Jennings(lame, I know :-)) because he took the team's rally out of jepoardy with a shot down the line extremely close to a grand slam, but he settled for a double. It was at 6-1 O's, until David Newhan knocked a single for right bringing in a run to make it 7-1(Newhan got a little to greedy and got caught hanging off first on the same play). End of the inng, 7-1 O's. That inning marked the end of the day for Jason Hammel, and his line is below:
3.1 IP, 7 ER, 8 hits, 1 BB, 3 K. Tough start for the young guy making his major league debut. Would be shocked if he didn't get sent back down to Durham.

Benson continued his dominance, and was flawless until the bottom of the 6th inning, when he gave up a single to Carl Crawford, who stole second and a throwing error by Ramon got him to 3rd base. Branyan again came close to a HR, but it ended up being a sac fly, making the score 7-2. The run was unearned and that was all the runs TB got off Benson.

The 7th inning was uneventful, but some action returned in the 8th inning. Gibbons got a single up the middle, and Patterson came to pinch run for him. Perlazzo sent Patterson, and that SB turned out to be big. After getting advanced to 3rd, Millar grounded out to SS, making it man on 3rd with 2 outs. The clutch hitting didn't stop, though, as Javy Lopez drove him in with an RBI single. 8-2 O's.

In the bottom of the 8th, Joey Gathright led off the inning with a single, which prompted the pull of Kris Benson. Great game for Kris tonight, and here's the line:
7 IP, 1 ER, 5 hits, 1 BB, and 5 K's
Crawford, then, grounded into a fielder's choice. Russel Branyon continued his hot hitting with a single, getting Crawford to third base. The rally ended there, though as the next batter K'd and 2 batters later Travis Lee grounded out, ending the threat. Nice inning by Sendy Rleal.

The bottom of the 9th is when things got very interesting. Jim Brower walked the first batter, and that was followed by a Josh Paul single. Another walk followed that, making it bases loaded no outs. Joey Gathright hit into a fielder's choice making the score 8-3 with one out and 2 on. Crawford followed up Gathright's FC with one of his own, making the score 8-4 with 2 outs and one on. When Russel Branyan walked, that was the end of Brower's night, and it was yet another bad one for him. Chris Ray came in and Mr. Automatic did guess what? Fan the only batter he faced, earning his 3rd save. Wish we didn't have to use Ray, but I would assume 1 batter won't effect him too much.

Another bad outing for Brower, expect a DFA soon.

The O's guarentee at least a split, and still have the sweep possibility alive.

Tomorrow will be Casey Fossum vs. Daniel Cabrera. I'm confident Daniel will pitch much better than his last time out and hopefully pick up his first W of the season.

Go O's! Back to .500!

Sweeeeeep the Rays!

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