Orioles pitcher Tommy Hunter picked up on Saturday night right where Jake Arrieta left off on Opening Day. He held the Minnesota Twins scoreless through seven innings and was charged with just a pair of eighth-inning unearned runs on the way to the Orioles second straight victory.
Clearly, he was satisfied with that effort, but if you're waiting for him to make any grand proclamations about the remainder of the season, you'll have to wait quite awhile.
"I've got 33, 34 more starts, I hope,'' he said. "After that, I'll look back and see how it is."
The first one was still significant. The Orioles were coming off an uplifting Opening Day and drew a nice second-night crowd of 31,532. That was almost 20,000 more than last year's attendance for the second home game, though that game was on a Wednesday night. Hunter wanted to keep the momentum going, and he succeeded.
"It was definitely important...it was fun," he said. "That's what a starting pitcher is supposed to do. You're supposed to go deep into the game and give your team a chance to win."
He held down the Twins until the Orioles could get after Minnesota starter Francisco Liriano, then tried to do what you're supposed to do when you're offense gives you a substantial lead.
"Just throw strikes and let the defense play,'' he said. "These guys are pretty good behind me. They made plays all night and got me out of it."
"When that happens, you just go out there and throw first-pitch strikes. Get out there and be aggressive in the zone. Wieters had a good gameplan. I shook him off once and he threw down the same pitch I shook off. So, I threw it. It was pretty funny, but I smiled out there and threw it and got a ground ball."