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Orioles make home return sweet with 5-2 win


Orioles make home return sweet with 5-2 win

BALTIMORE – Buck Showalter generally doesn’t like wearing his uniform top. It’s not comfortable for him. Monday night was different.

Showalter proudly showed off the white “Baltimore” jersey he wore. And, a solid Orioles win made the night even better.

"I liked it. Really like the part that says 'Baltimore.' Good looking. I wasn't sure if they made one for me. A guy my age, you have to make sure things fit. How did I look?” Showalter said.

“I'm very proud of Baltimore. …Everybody wore it. And it fit."

Showalter’s team, the one that made national news for playing a game without any fans and had three home games relocated was back at home after losing five of six in New York.

The Orioles got a strong outing from Ubaldo Jimenez and three home runs as they beat the Toronto Blue Jays 5-2 before 20,468 at Oriole Park on Monday night.

Manny Machado hit his first leadoff home run off Marco Estrada. It was his sixth of the season, and the crowd fed off the homer and the uniforms.

“It was awesome. We’re representing the city every day when we go out there, so to have it across our chests today, it meant a lot to us and we were just trying to rep the city the right way and show them who they are,” Machado said.

Chris Davis added his seventh, a long two-run shot to give the Jimenez and Orioles (14-16) a 3-0 lead.

“He’s been throwing the ball so well lately. As an offense, we just want to go out there and scratch a few runs as early as we can, give a little bit of breathing room to him,” Davis said.

Somehow, Estrada (1-2) made it through five innings without giving up another run, though he had baserunners in each inning.

Jimenez (3-2) finally gave up his first earned run of the season at home in his 19th inning when Kevin Pillar and Ezequiel Carrera hit back-to-back doubles in the fifth.

He struck out the side in the first and fourth, and fanned Russell Martin for the third time and Edwin Encarnacion for the second to end the sixth.

Encarnacion was so frustrated that his bat flew out of his hand.

The Orioles added their fourth run in the sixth against Jeff Francis. Davis and Steve Pearce singled. David Lough was hit by a pitch, and Caleb Joseph flied to center to score Davis.

Ryan Flaherty, who spent 15 days on the disabled list with a sore right groin, came out of the game in the third inning. Pearce replaced him.

“It’s not pain or anything like that. It’s just something that I haven’t dealt with before and it just feels like a grabbing sensation sometimes,” Flaherty said.

Flaherty will have an MRI on Tuesday.

With Everth Cabrera and Jonathan Schoop both on the disabled list, the Orioles will probably call up Rey Navarro if Flaherty goes back on the DL. Navarro was summoned when Flaherty was initially hurt.

Jimenez finished by giving up another run in the seventh. With one out, he walked Chris Colabello. Pillar bounced to third, and Machado got the second out by throwing to Pearce. Pillar was called out at first, but after Toronto (16-17) manager John Gibbons lobbied for a review, the call was overturned.

Gibbons had unsuccessfully challenged a call earlier in the game, and after the change, Carrera doubled to left. Delmon Young ran down Ryan Goins fly ball to end Jimenez’s night.

“He saved my game,” Jimenez said. “That was a great catch.”

Jimenez allowed two runs on nine hits in seven innings, walking two and striking out nine.

Adam Jones hit a long home run to left in the seventh, his sixth.

Darren O’Day pitched a spotless eighth. Zach Britton struck out Encarnacion and Danny Valencia in the ninth, but allowed singles to Colabello and Pillar before getting Jose Bautista on a grounder to third.

“It was nice to hear somebody rooting for you, and not against you, for once,” Britton said.

Even though the ballpark was less than half full, Pearce thought the crowd was especially energetic.

“It did seem different, especially at the beginning of the game because they were more into it than they usually are,” Pearce said.

“It's always good to play in front of the crowd. It gets loud, and sometimes you can see it our opponent, their body language. You just know something's going to happen.”

NOTES: Jimmy Paredes has a 10-game hitting streak. … Machado has a 17-game on-base streak. … Jimenez is 6-0 with a 2.14 ERA in his last seven home starts. … Orioles pitchers combined for a season-high 13 strikeouts. …Chris Tillman (2-4, 6.25) faces Mark Buehrle (4-2, 6.00) on Tuesday night. 

RELATED: Gausman getting MRI on Tuesday

MORE ORIOLES: Oriole players are the happiest to be home

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Orioles agree to one-year deal with pitcher Chris Tillman, according to reports

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Orioles agree to one-year deal with pitcher Chris Tillman, according to reports

SARASOTA, Fla. -- A person familiar with the negotiations says pitcher Chris Tillman and the Baltimore Orioles have agreed to a $3 million, one-year contract.

The deal includes performance bonuses, the person told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Monday because the deal had not yet been announced.

Tillman was 1-7 with a 7.84 ERA in 19 starts and five relief appearances last year. He would be the second starter added by the Orioles in the past week after right-hander Andrew Cashner.

Tillman likely would join right-handers Dylan Bundy, Kevin Gausman and Cashner in the rotation.

The 29-year-old right-hander lives in Sarasota and had been working out at the Orioles' facility before spring training. Manager Buck Showalter watched Tillman throw and was impressed.

Tillman began last season on the disabled list with right shoulder stiffness.

"Better than he did last year at this time. I think he's got the chance to pitch well for somebody this year," Showalter said. "A lot of the challenges he had last year -- this time last year -- aren't there. Somebody's going to reap the benefits."

Tillman's is 73-55 with a 4.43 ERA in nine major league seasons, all with the Orioles. He won 16 games in both 2013 and 2016.

"He's a guy when he's healthy you can bank on him giving you 200 innings and keeping his ERA between a 3 and a 4," Gausman said. "That in the AL East is always going to be very valuable."


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Orioles Spring Training Schedule 2018

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Orioles Spring Training Schedule 2018

Live baseball is close to gracing our television screens again. The Orioles haven't had the most active offseason, to put it mildly. Fans are still wondering who will make up more than half the spots in this year's rotation, and Manny Machado's upcoming free agency is looming over every decision the organization makes.

Still, it's exciting to be able to follow the team again. Not every game is televised, so get ready to constantly refresh your favorite beat writer's Twitter account for all your updates.

Even without getting to watch the games, it'll be comforting to once again check box scores in the morning to see if Jonathan Schoop is building on his breakout season, or if top-prospect Austin Hays is all he's cracked up to be (spoiler: he is).

This year's spring training will be especially interesting, considering how many big-name players will be signing in the next few weeks. The O's haven't yet made a big splash this offseason, but with the sheer volume of capable players still on the market, you have to wonder if they'll try to sign some impact players at bargain values.

Typically, the excitement of adding a new piece to the lineup or rotation has to be reignited after a long winter off, but this season, those additions will be taking place while camp is already underway.

It's going to be a hectic few weeks as teams prepare for thier seasons, so bookmark this page to check on on the Orioles spring training schedule over the next few weeks as the team finally takes the field in 2018.

Orioles 2018 Spring Training Schedule

Friday, Feb. 23 (SS) - Rays at Orioles, 1:05 pm (MASN)
Saturday, Feb. 24 (SS) - Orioles at Phillies, 1:05 pm
Saturday, Feb. 24 (SS) - Twins at Orioles, 6:05 pm
Sunday, Feb. 25 - Orioles at Red Sox, 1:05 pm 
Monday, Feb. 26 - Tigers at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Tuesday, Feb. 27 - Orioles at Rays, 1:05 pm
Wednesday, Feb. 28 - Cardinals at Orioles, 1:05 pm (MLBN) (MASN)
Thursday, Mar. 1 - Orioles at Rays, 1:05 pm
Friday, Mar. 2 - Pirates at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Saturday, Mar. 3 (SS) - Orioles at Phillies, 1:05 pm
Sunday, Mar. 4 - Red Sox at Orioles, 1:05 pm (MASN)
Tuesday, Mar. 6 - Orioles at Twins, 1:05 pm 
Wednesday, Mar. 7 - Orioles at Rays, 1:05 pm
Thursday, Mar. 8 - Blue Jays at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Friday, Mar. 9 - Orioles at Blue Jays, 1:07 pm
Saturday, Mar. 10 (SS) - Pirates at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Sunday, Mar. 11 (SS) - Orioles at Red Sox, 1:05 pm 
Sunday, Mar. 11 (SS) - Phillies at Orioles, 6:05 pm (MASN)
Monday, Mar. 12 - Orioles at Pirates, 1:05 pm 
Tuesday, Mar. 13 - Orioles at Twins, 1:05 pm 
Wednesday, Mar. 14 - Yankees at Orioles, 1:05 pm (MLBN) (MASN)
Thursday, Mar. 15 - Orioles at Cardinals, 1:05 pm
Friday, Mar. 16 - Orioles at Mets, 1:10 pm 
Saturday, Mar. 17 (SS) - Blue Jays at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Sunday, Mar. 18 - Mets at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Monday, Mar. 19 - Orioles at Tigers, 1:05 pm
Tuesday, Mar. 20 - Rays at Orioles, 6:05 pm (MASN)
Wednesday, Mar. 21 - Orioles at Yankees, 6:35 pm 
Thursday, Mar. 22 - Red Sox at Orioles, 1:05 pm (MASN)
Friday, Mar. 23 (SS) - Rays at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Saturday, Mar. 24 - Twins at Orioles, 6:05 pm
Sunday, Mar. 25 - Orioles at Phillies, 1:05 pm 
Monday, Mar. 27 (in Norfolk, VA) - Orioles at Tides (AAA), 3:05 pm