They'll be naming the American League All-Star pitching staff soon, and it is a pretty good bet that Dennis Martinez's phone will be ringing.
Martinez continued his hot streak of pitching tonight by stopping the California Angels on seven hits, 3-2, and giving the Orioles a sweep of this two-game series before a crowd of 24,035.
The Orioles' 27-year-old right-hander won for the seventh time in his last eight decisions and improved his season record to 9-5. He looked sharp until there were two outs in the ninth inning, when Rod Carew singled to left. Reliever Tippy Martinez came on to strike out Reggie Jackson for the final out.
Tippy Martinez, called on for the seventh time in the Orioles' last eight games, earned his eighth save and his second in two nights against the slumping Angels, who have lost seven in a row.
Cal Ripken Jr. led the offense for the Orioles, driving in Baltimore's first run with a sacrifice fly and breaking a 2-2 tie with a line-drive homer off reliever Doug Corbett in the eighth. Corbett (1-7) was the loser in relief of starter Steve Renko.
After using four relievers in the ninth inning of Monday night's 8-5 victory over the Angels, Baltimore Manager Earl Weaver was a bit concerned about his overworked pitching staff.
"Our pitchers are tired," Weaver said. "They need a night off. We need a complete game."
Dennis Martinez responded to that plea by pitching three shutout innings before battling with wildness and yielding a run in the fourth. After retiring the first two batters, Martinez walked former Orioles Doug DeCinces and Bobby Grich, and Ray Miller, the Baltimore pitching coach, came out of the dugout to tell Martinez to throw strikes.
Martinez did, but Tim Foli hit a line drive to left for a run-scoring single and a 1-0 lead for the Angels.
Meanwhile, Renko, the oldest player on the Angels' roster, breezed through the first five innings. That is five more innings than he pitched in his last start, a 7-2 loss to Kansas City in which Renko didn't retire a batter before being replaced.
Renko's demise came in the sixth inning, when the Orioles used four hits to take a 2-1 lead.
Rich Dauer started the rally with a single to left and took second on Renko's wild pitch. Ken Singleton followed with a single to right center, Dauer holding at third. That brought up the Orioles' hottest hitter, Eddie Murray, batting .354 in his last 21 games, but Renko got Murray to hit a weak foul pop-up.
The next three hitters fared better. Ripken's sacrifice fly deep to right scored Dauer, and Dan Ford and Gary Roenicke singled to get Singleton home and bring California Manager Gene Mauch to the mound. Mauch brought in Corbett, who retired Rick Dempsey to end the inning.
Martinez gave up another run in the seventh inning, and again it was wildness--he hit Juan Beniquez to open the inning--that led to his difficulties. Beniquez took second on Carew's sacrifice and stayed there when Reggie Jackson flied out to left, but he scored on designated hitter Don Baylor's sharp single to left that made the score 2-2.
Corbett got the first two hitters in the eighth, and got ahead of Ripken, 0-2. But Ripken hit the next pitch over the left center field fence, about 380 feet away, to put the Orioles back in front.