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Norfolk manager brings talent to Orioles


Norfolk manager brings talent to Orioles

WASHINGTON – For the final 13 games of the season, Norfolk manager Ron Johnson is helping the Orioles out. Johnson, in his fourth season as Norfolk’s manager, guided the Tides to the playoffs in 2015.

“It was probably one of the most fun teams I ever managed,” Johnson a veteran of two decades of minor league managing.

Johnson’s job is a difficult one because he has to juggle lineups and pitchers continually since many calls are not his, but the Orioles’.

“I hate to say it’s a challenge because that’s the job I signed up for. You know what you’re getting into. We know what the purpose of the job is, to get guys up here,” Johnson said. “We were able to do that. A lot of them came up here and had success, which is basically what I’m down there to do.”

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Fourteen of the 34 players with the Orioles were on Norfolk, and two others, Ryan Flaherty and Matt Wieters were there on rehab assignments.

One of those was Paul Janish, who Johnson said was the team’s MVP because the shortstop anchored an improved defense.

“He’s a game-changer with the glove,” Johnson said.

With all the Tides who are with the Orioles now, is there a sleeper who isn’t?

“I think Rey Navarro finished up extremely well for us down there,” Johnson said. “It was interesting not only to watch him play not only second base, but a lot of shortstop down the stretch.”

Johnson says he likes what he sees with the Orioles already.

“I think we have a lot of sleepers who are already here. The whole idea here is to see how they fit and how they’re going to help the Baltimore Orioles be a first division club. I think they’re in this room right here,” Johnson said.

MORE ORIOLES: Orioles-Nationals rained out, make up is Thursday

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Orioles pitching falls apart as Tigers complete sweep in Detroit

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Orioles pitching falls apart as Tigers complete sweep in Detroit

DETROIT - Leonys Martin hit his first big league grand slam, Jeimer Candelario had four hits and three RBIs, and the Detroit Tigers beat Baltimore 13-8 Thursday to extend the Orioles' losing streak to six.

Jordan Zimmermann (1-0) gave up four runs and seven hits in 5 1/3 innings, allowing two home runs to Manny Machado and one to Chris Davis. Zimmermann was pitching for the first time since being hit in the jaw by a line drove off the bat of Cleveland's Jason Kipnis on April 11.

Alex Cobb (0-2) made his second start after signing a $57 million, four-year contract in spring training and his ERA rose to 15.43. He allowed seven runs - five earned - and 10 hits in 3 1/3 innings.

Machado had four RBIs for the Orioles, who were outhit 18-14 in the game and outscored 23-15 in the three-game sweep.

Victor Martinez hit an RBI single in the first, but Davis put Baltimore ahead with a two-run homer in the second, his sixth hit and fourth homer in 10 career at-bats against Zimmermann.

Detroit went ahead for good with four runs in the bottom half after third baseman Tim Beckham's throwing error allowed James McCann to reach base leading off. Jose Iglesias hit a two-run triple, Miguel Cabrera had an RBI single and Nick Castellanos a run-scoring groundout.

Machado's homer in the third cut Baltimore's deficit to 5-2, but Candelario's two-run homer extended the lead to 7-2 in the bottom half. Martin homered off Mike Wright Jr. in a five-run fifth.

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Orioles fall in Detroit after wild 8th and 9th innings

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Orioles fall in Detroit after wild 8th and 9th innings

DETROIT -- Dixon Machado came to the plate with only one big league homer to his name, but the way this game was going, anything seemed possible.

"Walking to the plate I was thinking, `What if I hit a homer right here?'" the Detroit infielder said. "He threw me a fastball away but when he came in with a pitch I was ready for it and I just hit it hard."

Machado led off the bottom of the ninth with a home run , capping a wild final two innings and lifting the Tigers over the Baltimore Orioles 6-5 on Wednesday. Detroit led 2-1 before each team scored three runs in the eighth and one in the ninth.

Baltimore's Luis Sardinas tied it with a solo shot off Shane Greene (1-0) in the top of the ninth, but then the 26-year-old Machado hit a line drive off Pedro Araujo (1-2) that cleared the fence in left field. It was his second homer in 299 big league at-bats.

The game was moved from 6:40 p.m. to 1:10 p.m. in anticipation of bad weather. Although it was a sparse crowd, to say the least , the sun did come out, and those fans in attendance were treated to quite a few homers.

Miguel Cabrera went deep on his 35th birthday, and Jeimer Candelario and John Hicks also homered for Detroit. Hicks hit a three-run shot in the eighth that put the Tigers up 5-4.

Danny Valencia hit a solo homer for the Orioles, who have lost five straight.

Detroit's Matthew Boyd allowed a run, two hits and three walks in 6 1/3 innings, striking out six. Baltimore's Kevin Gausman allowed two runs and nine hits in six-plus innings.

Cabrera's solo homer put the Tigers up 2-1 in the sixth, but Manny Machado and Chris Davis hit RBI singles as part of a three-run rally by Baltimore in the eighth. The drive by Davis was nearly a home run, but it hit the wall and stayed in play.

"There were obviously a couple bad breaks -- our ball hits the top of the fence and comes back and their ball goes over -- but there were four or five breaks we got during the game on bounces or pitch calls," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "If you lose focus and start feeling sorry for yourselves, every team you play is going to take advantage and step on your throat."