John Lowenstein, who had driven in a run in the eighth inning, took a called third strike with the bases loaded in the ninth and the Orioles' rally fell short tonight. The 7-5 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays was only Baltimore's second in the last 10 games.
Lloyd Moseby drove in three runs and Ernie Whitt two for the Blue Jays. Jim Gott (1-3), who entered the game with a 7.50 ERA, gave up four hits before a blister on his pitching hand forced him to leave after the fifth. Roy Lee Jackson, Randy Moffitt and Joey McLaughlin finished, with McLaughlin earning his second save.
"Man, I needed that," said Gott. "Not only to give myself confidence, but to get them (management) back to believing in me, that I can start."
The Orioles took a 1-0 lead in the second on Ken Singleton's sixth homer. But Toronto scored three times in the third. After Willie Upshaw singled, stole second and Jorge Orta walked, Whitt doubled in two runs. Moseby then singled off Dennis Martinez (3-7) to score Whitt.
Toronto increased its lead to 5-1 in the fourth on consecutive singles by Alfredo Griffin, Rance Mulliniks and Hosken Powell and a sacrifice fly by Upshaw.
The Orioles closed to 5-2 in the sixth on Dan Ford's fifth homer. But the Blue Jays made it 7-2 in their half on Moseby's two-run, bases-loaded single.
The Orioles got a run in the eighth on Lowenstein's bases-loaded fielder's choice. In the ninth, Jim Dwyer homered and Eddie Murray walked with the bases loaded before McLaughlin got Lowenstein looking to end the game.