NEW YORK –- Bartolo Colon was all around the plate on Tuesday night. Orioles hitters waved at the ball, and while they threatened, rarely did much against the 41-year-old portly right-hander.
Colon didn’t walk a batter. It was his fifth straight start without a walk, and he struck out nine in 7 2/3 innings.
Manny Machado and Chris Davis did homer, but the Orioles lost 3-2 to the New York Mets before 20,534 at Citi Field,
Bud Norris gave up three runs in the fourth, but hung around through seven, posting the Orioles’ seventh straight quality start. He retired his final 11 batters.
Norris (1-3) allowed three runs on seven hits, walking one and striking out four, but he was no match for Colon.
"He's been doing it for so long. I feel like he's pretty much got a scouting report on every hitter in the big leagues. He's a guy I faced a number of times, but you know you're always in for a battle,” Davis said.
“You can’t go up there and just sit on one pitch or take a bunch of pitches. If you take some pitches, you’re most likely going to be down in the count. He has gotten better over the years.”
The Mets (17-10), who had been shut out 1-0 by the Nationals in their previous two games, scored three runs in the fourth.
Lucas Duda led off with a double to center off Norris (1-3). With one out, Daniel Murphy’s single to right scored Duda. Wilmer Flores doubled down the left field line, and Kevin Plawecki’s double to left scored Murphy and Flores for a 3-0 New York lead. All three RBIs came on 0-2 pitches.
The Orioles (12-12) had a fine opportunity to score in the fourth when Adam Jones and Davis led off with singles. They moved up on Delmon Young’s roller to Norris. Caleb Joseph struck out and Travis Snider grounded to first.
Colon (5-1) retired eight straight until Young singled to lead off the seventh, but he struck out Joseph and Snider and got Everth Cabrera to ground out to second to end the inning.
The Orioles stayed in the game only because Jones made two terrific plays in center, saving Norris from further damage. He crashed into the wall to rob Duda from an extra-base hit to end the fifth, and ran down Dilson Herrera’s fly ball to right-center in the seventh.
“Adam had a tremendous game in center field. He kept a lot of damage down. He played shallow, he cut off a ball in front of him and ran two or three balls down that most centerfielders, with the exception of theirs, would have run down,” manager Buck Showalter said.
“Adam was a big part of that game being so close.”
Norris had an awful spring training, and due to last weeks’ two postponements was pitching on eight days rest.
“Bud gave us a chance to win,” Showalter said. “Bud was effective, and he gave us a chance…He pitched well for the most part. But we’ve been giving up some 0-2 base hits we shouldn’t but I can’t fault him. He gave us a chance to win.”
In his first three starts, Norris allowed 20 runs in 10 1/3 innings. In his last two, he’s given up six in 13 2/3 innings.
“I’m really finding my stride. I didn’t have a great camp, but I feel strong and I’m right where I want to be mentally. This is a tough game, got to keep making pitches. Once the ball leaves my hand, I have no control over it. But I feel good our rotation has been very good, we know what we can do. We kind of build off each other,” Norris said.
Machado hit a home run to left with one out in the eighth, his fifth of the year. After Jimmy Paredes flied to deep left, Carlos Torres replaced Colon.
Colon has pitched 40 1/3 innings this season and has walked only one.
Davis hit his sixth home run off the year off Jeurys Familia to lead off the ninth.
Familia recorded his major league-leading11th save by retiring Young, Joseph and Snider.
NOTES: Showalter said that Steve Pearce, who didn’t play because of a stomach virus, was available to pinch hit. Pearce will be re-evaluated on Wednesday night. Colon became the first pitcher to record a win against one team pitching for seven different teams. … The Orioles have lost seven straight games to the Mets. They’re at .500 for the eighth time this season, matching their 2014 total. … Ubaldo Jimenez (2-1, 1.59) faces Jacob deGrom (2-3, 3.34) on Wednesday night. … J.J. Hardy was 1-for-4 and Ryan Flaherty 1-for-3 in their second rehab games at Bowie.
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