BEDARD WINS AGAIN
Erik Bedard got into trouble several times early in yesterday's game while lacking his typical dominant stuff. Bedard allowed a long, bases-empty homer to Carl Crawford in the first inning and another long home run, this one a two-run shot, to B.J. Upton in the third. In 6 2/3 innings, Bedard allowed nine hits, his highest total since June 10, which was also the date of his last loss. But Bedard also struck out 11 and allowed no walks in improving to 12-4. He has won six straight starts and eight straight decisions.
When Melvin Mora crushed a bases-empty home run in the ninth inning - the Orioles' third homer - every Orioles starter had at least one hit. And the only one who didn't have an RBI was Jay Gibbons, who was 4-for-5 and scored a run. The Orioles had 16 hits, tying a season high. Corey Patterson had a game-high three RBIs, and Nick Markakis had two. Yesterday also was the third time this season the Orioles scored 10 runs or more. The opponent in all three of those games was the Devil Rays.
When the fourth inning started, the Orioles were trailing by two runs and Bedard was scuffling. They sent 10 batters to the plate in the inning, scored six runs and knocked Devil Rays starter Andy Sonnanstine out of the game. Miguel Tejada started it with a leadoff home run, the first of five Orioles hits in the inning. Catcher Paul Bako had an RBI fielder's choice, Brian Roberts hit an RBI single, Patterson had an RBI double and Markakis hit a two-run single.
The Orioles are off today before beginning a six-game homestand that starts with three games against the Seattle Mariners. In Game 1 , Orioles right-hander Steve Trachsel (5-7, 4.97) will oppose Mariners right-hander Jeff Weaver (2-10, 6.32). Weaver has lost four straight starts, and he's winless since June 25. He's 3-4 with a 4.11 ERA in nine career games against the Orioles. Trachsel is 0-4 with an 8.05 ERA against Seattle.