BALTIMORE — Playing against a division rival, attempting to climb back to .500 and facing what likely will be an emotionally charged four-game series in Boston, the Baltimore Orioles certainly needed a complete effort like their 3-0 win against the Tampa Bay Rays on Wednesday afternoon.
They also needed to get back into the clubhouse and thaw out — that’s what happens when the temperature at first pitch is 39 degrees and you play for nearly three hours.
“I think it is more mental than anything else. Both teams have to play in it. It’s not like one team has advantage over the other,” Orioles first baseman Chris Davis said. “You can’t feel your fingertips, your eyes are watering, but that is part of it, man.”
The Orioles ice-scraped their way to a victory on the strength of a sacrifice fly by Matt Wieters, an RBI groundout by J.J. Hardy and a bases-loaded RBI single by Adam Jones that trickled about 40 feet along the third base line.
“With the Tampa team, you know how their pitching staff is selfish. They don’t allow much,” said Jones, whose bunt single set up a bases loaded situation in the fourth inning that led to two runs on productive outs before he added the RBI roller in the fifth. “They are stingy. Whatever we can do to manufacture runs, we have to do that.”
Jones was the designated hitter Wednesday after being sent home Tuesday with the flu — which has affected several members of the club for the past week.
Orioles right-hander Miguel Gonzalez and two relievers made the three runs stand up in the club’s first shutout since Sept. 6 against the Chicago White Sox.
— Baltimore Sun