O's: Hitting Jeter unintentional, not retribution

The Baltimore Sun

NEW YORK -- Despite watching two of his best players get hit by New York Yankees pitchers in a lopsided victory Tuesday night, Orioles manager Dave Trembley said before yesterday's game that his team would not retaliate.

Is it possible that Erik Bedard didn't get the message? The Orioles starter hit Yankees star Derek Jeter in the leg with two out and nobody on in the first inning. Though Bedard and Trembley denied it was intentional, it would have been the ideal spot for retribution.

"I tried to go inside, but it got away," Bedard said.

Added Trembley: "I haven't talked to him about it, but I don't think it was intentional."

Jeter and Yankees manager Joe Torre took the high road. Asked whether he felt Bedard hit him intentionally, Jeter said, "You've got to ask him. I have no idea."

Jeter shot a glare at both Bedard and the Orioles dugout after he was hit, though Bedard said he didn't notice.

Trembley made it known before the game that he was displeased with Ron Villone for hitting Nick Markakis in the middle of the back in the seventh inning of Tuesday's 12-0 victory. New York reliever Jim Brower, a former Oriole, had hit Miguel Tejada in the left shoulder an inning earlier.

"Part of pitching is to pitch inside," Trembley said. "Part of pitching is not hitting people in the middle of the back, but I dare say Mr. Villone would not want to speak to Mr. Jeter, Mr. [Alex] Rodriguez and Mr. [Bobby] Abreu if they got hit in the back and it was his fault for doing what he did. But that's neither here nor there. We don't play that game. We didn't do that last night and we won't do that today. We'll just let it go. I have too much respect for Mr. Torre to do something like that."

Before the game, Markakis had icepacks wrapped around his right thigh, where he got hit by a pitch on Monday night, and his back. He acknowledged that he was surprised how hard the Yankees were pitching him inside.

"It seems teams are pitching me hard and away and soft and away. It caught me a little off guard that they've been pitching me hard and in," said Markakis, who was 3-for-5 with an RBI yesterday and is 20-for-50 (.400) with a home run and eight RBIs in 12 games against the Yankees this season.

Asked if he felt Yankees pitchers were trying to send him a message, Markakis said: "It's hard to tell whether they did or they didn't [do it on purpose]. It definitely hurt though. It got me good."

Guthrie undeterred

Three disappointing starts will not be enough for Jeremy Guthrie to change his routine. Guthrie, who has given up 14 total earned runs in his past three starts, maintained yesterday that he is not tired and his recent struggles are simply a lack of execution.

"I know my first season I started off very well and then I struggled," said Guthrie, who has pitched 138 2/3 innings this year, just four innings fewer than he pitched last season. "They asked me to do all kinds of changes and those changes threw me into a nice roadblock for about a year and a half. There's nothing that I have to change. The only thing I need to change is to just get the ball down and be more consistent."

While Guthrie acknowledged that he has made a few more mistakes in his past three starts, he doesn't feel that he's pitching that much differently than he was earlier this year.

"Some of the pitches that I made earlier this season that got people out aren't getting people out now," he said. "But that doesn't mean that you change what you're doing. That just means you have to keep attacking, and hopefully things go back to the way that they were before."

Hoey getting job done

Orioles reliever James Hoey turned in his fourth straight scoreless outing yesterday, holding the Yankees down in the eighth inning. Since getting recalled from Triple-A Norfolk, Hoey has given up no runs and just two hits in a span of five innings.

"I had to start focusing," Hoey said. "That first outing I had here [in June], I was a mess. But I'm more focused. I don't want to know who is up at bat. I just want to see the mitt. I was worried about everything. Now, I'm just going after them and using my stuff."


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