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Orioles beat Rays 2-1 on Hardy's ninth-inning single

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Orioles beat Rays 2-1 on Hardy's ninth-inning single

BALTIMORE –- Darren O’Day usually doesn’t’ hear the crowd. Friday night, it was different. O’Day had loaded the bases with none out in the ninth inning of a tie game.

Pitching coach Dave Wallace came to the mound, and just like that, O’Day struck out Steven Souza, then Asdrubal Carrera and got Jake Elmore to ground out to third.

Huge cheers, and then a few minutes and a few pitching changes later, J.J. Hardy had the biggest hit of his season, and the Orioles had a 2-1 win over the Tampa Bay Rays before a sellout crowd of 45,505 at Oriole Park.

“I don’t notice it much when I’m pitching, but I noticed it when I had two outs and two strikes how loud they got, and it was pretty impressive. It probably only added to the environment that we created there,” O’Day said.

O’Day (1-0) allowed singles to Evan Longoria and David DeJesus to start the ninth, and then hit Logan Forsythe with a pitch, and then he got out of it, and the Orioles came up in the ninth.

“The second part was more fun than the first. It’s not how we drew it up, but anytime you put a zero on the board is exciting,” O’Day said.

“You’re never really out of it, and I’ve kind of enjoyed being in situations with guys on base. I don’t mind it. Usually, it’s not by my own creation, but I don’t feel like the game is lost if there’s a guy on second or a guy’s on third. That hitter is just as anxious as you to win the game, so there was definitely some luck involved to get out of that.”

Travis Snider started the ninth with an infield single off Brandon Gomes (1-2). Jimmy Paredes struck out. After Adam Jones flied to center, Chris Davis singled to left off Xavier Cedeno, Everth Cabrera, who was running for Snider made it to third.

Against Steve Geltz, Hardy slammed a single to left on a 1-0 count, scoring Cabrera and the Orioles (23-24) had the big win.

“It's always important. I guess no more important than any other time to try and win a ball game, but it's been a grind, and I'm working at it every day, and it's going to come. It's going to come soon,” Hardy said.

Hardy is still batting just .197, and the RBI was just his sixth in 21 games.

Miguel Gonzalez pitched a brilliant eight innings, allowing just one run on Souza’s second-inning home run, and just two more hits. He struck out six without walking a batter, but did hit two.

“It's nice. I mean, we need to score more runs, but for Miguel to come in and do what he did tonight, Darren to get out of that bases-loaded jam was huge. It was just a big win for us,” Hardy said.

Tampa Bay (24-25) took the 1-0 lead into the seventh.

Kevin Jepsen surrendered Davis’ 12th home run, his fourth in the past four games, with one out in the seventh.

Gonzalez has allowed two runs in 21 2/3 innings in three starts against Tampa Bay this season.

“I don’t know, it’s something that we face those guys a lot and we talk about them every time, how to approach them and just be aggressive with every pitch. Especially Longoria and those guys that, if you hang a pitch or give in, they are gonna do some damage. We did a good job today overall and good things happened,” Gonzalez said.

NOTES: Manager Buck Showalter hasn’t made a final decision on Bud Norris, who’s still on the 15-day disabled list with bronchitis. He’ll either make another rehab start or return to the rotation during next week’s Houston series. “He’s real close,” Showalter said. “He wants to pitch bad.”

Showalter said Norris, who is 1-4 with a 9.88 ERA, would not pitch out of the bullpen. “I plan on Bud coming back in our rotation. He won 15 games for us [last year] and will pitch well for us again this year. I’ve got a long memory.

-Catcher Ryan Lavarnway was outrighted to Triple-A Norfolk, but he declined the assignment and elected to become a free agent. Lavarnway, who was designated for assignment, batted .107 in 10 games.

-With the win, Showalter passes Hall of Famer Whitey Herzog for 35th place on the all-time win list with 1,282. It was also Showalter’s 400th win as Orioles manager, seven away from Hank Bauer’s 407. Bauer is currently in third place on the team’s win list.

-Erasmo Ramirez (2-2, 6.62) faces Wei-Yin Chen (1-3, 3.13) on Saturday at 4:05 p.m. … This was the Orioles’ second sellout of the season. 

MORE ORIOLES: Gausman is very, very eager to get started

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Trumbo homers twice, drives in 5 as Orioles beat Rangers 9-6

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Trumbo homers twice, drives in 5 as Orioles beat Rangers 9-6

 Mark Trumbo could have looked around the diamond at his Orioles teammates and wondered, "Who are these guys?"

With veterans Adam Jones and Chris Davis out of the starting lineup, Trumbo alone represented experience on a young, struggling team.

The slugger homered twice and drove in five runs, and Baltimore beat the Texas Rangers 9-6 in a back-and-forth game Sunday to avoid a four-game sweep.

"There's a few of us guys that have been around a little longer than most," Trumbo said. "The production comes and goes, but the mindset is the big thing, and I think these guys are doing a good job."

Entering the series, Trumbo hadn't gone deep since July 9. He completed the four games 7 for 16 with three homers and nine RBIs as Baltimore totaled 21 runs.

Austin Wynns and Jonathan Villar also homered for the Orioles.

Trumbo singled home a run in the first inning. His two-run homer in the third put Baltimore ahead to stay at 6-5 against starter Drew Hutchison (1-2), who was making his Rangers debut.

"Just pitch execution, poor command, too many balls up in the zone," Hutchison said. "When you do things like that, those are the results that you're going to have."

Both of Trumbo's homers came with two strikes.

"I've been getting to two strikes a lot lately and still getting some hits," he said. "I hit a changeup (from Hutchison), and I put some good wood on it."

The teams had scored in every half-inning before that, with the lead changing hands in four of those.

Trumbo left the game after his two-run homer against Matt Moore in the seventh.

"(Trumbo) almost didn't play today," Orioles manager Buck Showalter. "His knee's been a little sore. I noticed running around the bases on the second home run."

Another difference was Baltimore's beleaguered bullpen, which allowed only one run and one hit in 7 1/3 innings.

Tanner Scott (2-2), the second of six Orioles pitchers, shut out Texas for 2 1/3 innings, which tied his longest major league outing. He relieved starter Yefry Ramirez with the bases loaded and two outs in the second and struck out Ronald Guzman.

Mychal Givens retired the final four batters for his second save.

Jace Peterson led off the game with a single and scored on Trumbo's single for a short-lived 1-0 lead.

Ramirez retired the first two Rangers hitters but gave up a triple to Elvis Andrus. After two walks loaded the bases, Robinson Chirinos singled home two runs.

The Orioles regained the lead at 4-2 in the second on a three-run homer by Wynns, the No. 9 batter.

The Rangers scored three runs in the bottom half on Shin-Soo Choo's sacrifice fly, Andrus' groundout and a broken-bat single by Joey Gallo for a 5-4 advantage.

Gallo and Rougned Odor homered in each of the first three games of the series, but their streaks were stopped on Sunday.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Orioles: Davis didn't play for a second straight game. Showalter said, "He's banged up a little bit. We're going to give him the benefit of another day and the off day Monday." ... Showalter said it's likely that OF Craig Gentry, who has missed six weeks because of a fractured rib, will begin a rehab assignment Tuesday at Double-A Bowie. ... INF Steve Wilkerson (strained left oblique), who hasn't played since July 1, could go on a rehab assignment Thursday.

UP AND DOWN AGAIN

To make room for Hutchison on the roster, the Rangers optioned RHP Austin Bibens-Dirkx to Triple-A Round Rock for the third time this season.

JUST KEEP HITTING

Andrus extended his hitting streak to 16 games, equaling a career best. It's also the longest current run in the majors.

UP NEXT

Orioles: Begin a three-game series at Tampa Bay on Tuesday. Alex Cobb (3-14, 5.83 ERA) will start against Rays newcomer Tyler Glasnow (1-2, 4.27).

Rangers: LHP Martin Perez (2-4, 6.50) pitches Monday as Texas hosts Seattle and LHP Wade LeBlanc (6-2, 3.95) to begin a three-game series.

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Adam Jones helps Little League team with $8.5K donation

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Adam Jones helps Little League team with $8.5K donation

Adam Jones continues to be one of baseball's Good Dudes. 

Jones, who's been recognized before for his philanthropic efforts around Baltimore, made headlines recently when he donated $8.5 thousand dollars to the Mamie Johnson Little League team. 

Mamie Johnson are headed to the Mid-Atlantic Finals of the Little League World Series qualifying tournament but needed $10k in travel assistance to get there. That's where Jones, who orginally learned of the team on Twitter, stepped in: 

When asked about his donation, Jones said, "I want to see the next generation get an opportunity to succeed. Me being a black man trying to integrate more African-Americans into baseball, this was a no-brainer.''

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