Starting at catcher in place of Ramon Hernandez yesterday, Paul Bako threw out two runners attempting to steal while Adam Loewen was on the mound in the Orioles' 4-1 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in Jupiter, Fla. Bako cut down Aaron Miles after Scott Spiezio struck out to complete the double play and end the third inning, and he threw out So Taguchi after a one-out single in the fifth. Bako also had two hits, including a run-scoring single in the sixth inning.
The Orioles maintained a 2-1 lead after six innings because of a base-running blunder by Scott Rolen. Pinch hitter Chris Duncan singled with two outs to score Miles. Jolbert Cabrera, running for Albert Pujols, also would have scored, but Rolen overran second base and was tagged out before Cabrera crossed the plate. The tying run was erased. Duncan is 4-for-4 with two home runs as a pinch hitter, but he lost an RBI.
Another run lost
Taguchi thought he hit a home run off Orioles reliever Jon Leicester in the ninth inning. Third base umpire Bruce Dreckman gave the universal sign by circling his arm above his head, but plate umpire Joe West correctly ruled that the ball bounced on the warning track in left and hopped the fence. Taguchi, who had rounded the bases to loud applause, returned to second and didn't score.
The Orioles make their third straight trip today, playing the Los Angeles Dodgers in Vero Beach. Steve Trachsel, trying to lower his 8.18 ERA, opposes Brett Tomko.