FORT MYERS, Fla. – The Orioles finally lost a Grapefruit League game.
The Twins jumped out to a six-run lead Thursday afternoon, three of them off starter Jair Jurrjens in the first inning, as the Orioles lost their first spring game, 7-1, at Hammond Stadium.
The Orioles had won their first five Grapefruit League games.
Jurrjens, making his second spring start, struggled mightily through a 34-pitch first inning.
Jurrjens, who is trying to earn a rotation spot after signing a minor league contract, allowed three earned runs on two hits and three walks, battling with his control throughout the outing.
Of the eight hitters he faced, he threw just two first-pitch strikes.
“We’re still trying to familiarize ourself with him,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. “He’s got a lot of sink there. He’ll get better. We’ll see if he can get better the next time out. It’s been a while for him, so I’d lean on whatever he has to tell you.
“He’s missing down,” Showalter added.” Everything’s down. I’d feel a lot different if he was missing up, away, in, out. It’s just all down.”
Joe Mauer, Josh Willingham and Justin Morneau each had two hits. Morneau's bases-loaded double off Jurrjens in the first opened opened the scoring, plating three runs.
Orioles third baseman Manny Machado, who also played in Wednesday road game in Tampa against the Yankees, had two hits. He is 4-for-7 this spring and has reached base in seven of his 10 plate appearances.
Catcher Chris Robinson, who will be leaving Sunday to play for Canada in the World Baseball Classic, added two hits in his first spring start.
The Orioles' only run came on Xavier Avery's ninth-inning sacrifice fly, scoring Chris Dickerson.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun