Orioles manager Buck Showalter said he spoke to Major League Baseball¿s chief baseball officer Joe Torre in the aftermath of Friday¿s strange game in which right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez was ejected, but wouldn¿t divulge any details of his conversation.
The Orioles and Red Sox have had their share of tense moments at Fenway Park over the years, but what happened in the fourth inning of Boston's 3-2, walk-off win Friday night didn't seem to be one of them.
The Orioles didn't play their best baseball this weekend. But after a career day by Nelson Cruz in a 7-5 win in 11 innings over the Tampa Bay Rays on Sunday afternoon, they left Tropicana Field with a 9 1/2-game lead in the American League East.
At this point, the Orioles (75-55) don't need style points. They just have to keep winning. And with a couple key hits and a bullpen that didn't allow a run in 4 1/3 innings, they have now beaten the Rays (64-68) in 10 of their 14 meetings this season.
The Orioles rallied from a three-run deficit to tie the game in the eighth inning Monday night before left-hander Brian Matusz allowed a game-winning two-run homer to Jerry Sands, handing the Orioles a 5-4 loss -- their third defeat in the past four games -- in front of an announced 10,576 at Tropicana Field.
As Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette sat in his office at the Ed Smith Stadium complex on a sunny afternoon earlier this month, overlooking a well-manicured cloverleaf of fields, a bitter winter seemed like an eternity ago in more ways than one.