On one swing, frustration transformed into elation as the Orioles stormed the field and mobbed Wieters near first base to celebrate the club’s sixth walk-off win of the season and first since June 13 in Boston.
It appeared the Orioles were on their way to one of the most deflating losses of the season after Conor Gillaspie broke a 2-2 tie with a pinch-hit solo homer off reliever Tommy Hunter (4-3) in the top of the 10th.
“It was huge . . . for us to come back and act like nothing happened,” said second baseman Brian Roberts, who hit his second homer in three games, a solo shot in the fifth. “Hopefully, this is one of those days you look back on later and say, ‘That was huge.’ ”
In the bottom of the inning, rookie Henry Urrutia sparked life back into the home crowd with a one-out pinch-hit single. Nick Markakis followed with a bloop single to left. Two batters later, Wieters — who came into the game as a pinch hitter in the eighth inning — provided the game-winning hit, lacing a 2-1 pitch from Reed (5-3) down the right-field line to score pinch-runner Chris Dickerson and Markakis.
“You’re in the dugout, and you get a certain feel,” Orioles Manager Buck Showalter said. “There’s a lot of people frustrated for the right reasons. And to end up on the good side of it, you’re excited about that for our players and for our fans.”
Said Wieters: “Keep getting opportunities, that’s all you can ask for. Whether you succeed or not, you want that next opportunity to come to you and you want another chance.”
Before Wieters’s game-winning hit, the Orioles were 6 for 52 — a putrid .115 batting average — with runners in scoring position over the past six games.
“Gosh, if you give yourself enough chances with the lineup we have, you figure something is going to happen,” Roberts said. “We don’t have bad hitters on our team. That’s what you do. You try to continue to create opportunities. It took a lot today, but we finally got one.”
The victory, their third straight, gave the Orioles their first series win in their past four. They will go for a four-game sweep Sunday.
— Baltimore Sun