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Jonathan Schoop's home run forces Orioles, Pirates to 7-7 tie

SARASOTA, Fla. -- The Orioles and Pittsburgh Pirates tied, 7-7, in 10 innings Sunday afternoon at Ed Smith Stadium after each team had a home run in the ninth.

Reigning National League Most Valuable Player Andrew McCutchen hit a solo homer off minor leaguer Oliver Drake to put the Pittsburgh Pirates ahead, 7-6.

Orioles prospect Jonathan Schoop then tied the game in the bottom of the inning with a solo shot in front of a sellout crowd of 8,064 at Ed Smith Stadium.

Schoop's home run, which went to center field, was the fifth overall in the game on an afternoon that was challenging for pitchers with the wind blowing out to left field. The 22-year-old infielder is batting .400 with two home runs and seven RBIs this spring.

The Orioles had a 6-5 lead heading into the top of the eighth inning, but the Pirates scored one run to tie the game.

Left-hander Zach Britton opened the frame with a walk to former Orioles first baseman Travis Ishikawa, who moved to third when a sharp bouncer by Tony Sanchez skipped past Jonathan Schoop at second base for an error. Ishikawa then scored on Jordy Mercer’s ground out.

Delmon Young, who is battling for one of the final spots on the Orioles’ 25-man Opening Day roster, gave the club a 6-5 lead in the bottom of the seventh inning with a two-out RBI single that scored Nolan Reimold.

Orioles third baseman Ryan Flaherty hit a game-tying two-run homer off right-hander Gerrit Cole in the sixth inning.

Despite a solid start from Orioles right-hander Kevin Gausman in what will likely be his final Grapefruit League outing, the Pirates rallied for four runs in the top of the sixth inning.

Gausman, who allowed one run and three hits, struck out eight batters and walked two in four innings. He left the game with a 3-1 lead.

But the Pirates plated four runs in the sixth off Orioles right-hander Steve Johnson, the big blow being a two-run double by Mercer with the bases loaded on a hit that went over the head of Adam Jones in center field and gave Pittsburgh a 5-3 lead.

Chris Davis hit his fourth homer of the spring, an opposite-field shot off Cole in the third inning that put the Orioles up, 3-1.

Gausman was able to limit the Pirates to just one run despite allowed a leadoff homer to Starling Marte four pitches into the game. He allowed the first three hitters he faced to reach base – Marte’s homer was followed by Travis Snider's walk and a double by McCutchen that hit off the top of the left-field wall.

But Gausman went on the strike out the side to end the first, beginning a string of five strikeouts over eight plate appearances.

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
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