The much-anticipated major league debut of Garrett Olson wasn't exactly a thing of beauty, but the 23-year-old did display some grit and guts. Olson allowed 10 base runners, five on hits, five on walks. Olson struck out four, including designated hitter Jim Thome twice. The nerves were evident from the beginning, as Olson walked the first hitter he faced and then threw away a pickoff attempt. However, Olson made several nice pitches to get out of jams and left with the Orioles holding a four-run lead.
Orioles interim manager Dave Trembley obviously wanted Olson to be rewarded in his major league debut. But he removed his starting pitcher with a man on and two outs short of being eligible for his first victory. Olson's last pitch was a curveball that struck out Thome for the first out of the fifth. Trembley brought on long reliever Rob Bell, who struck out Paul Konerko and induced Jermaine Dye to fly out to center. Bell, who before this series hadn't recorded a major league victory since April 2005, has two in a three-day span.
SMALL BALL, BIG RESULTS
The Orioles scored four times in the third off Jose Contreras, damage mostly induced by bunts, bloops and grounders. Corey Patterson and Brian Roberts had consecutive bunt singles with Contreras' throwing error on Roberts' bunt enabling Patterson to score. Nick Markakis hit a ground-ball single. Kevin Millar blooped a double and Jay Gibbons hit a sacrifice fly to take the lead. Jay Payton completed the damage with an RBI infield single. The Orioles had six hits in the inning, three of them infield singles, and stole two bases.
Today's series finale will feature Orioles left-hander Brian Burres (4-2, 3.38) against Chicago left-hander John Danks (4-6, 4.43). Burres, who has won his past three decisions, has never faced the White Sox. Danks, acquired in an offseason trade with the Texas Rangers for Brandon McCarthy, has never faced the Orioles. He is coming off his best outing of the season, as he held the Kansas City Royals to one earned run and four hits in eight innings, but didn't get a decision.