Tuesday, March 13, 2012

O's and Rays Tie, Hammel and Wondering About Nick Markakis

This afternoon, the Orioles and Tampa Bay Rays played to a 7-7 tie in Sarasota, FL.

Baltimore’s offense this spring has been fairly anemic; however, they came through on Tuesday. They trounced Rays’ starter David Price – who went 3 2/3 innings and gave up four runs – in his outing for some early action.

They scored four times in the second innings as Ronny Paulino plated in a run, and Jai Miller hit a three-run homer.

Jason Hammel, in his second outing of the spring, pitched well. He gave up a solo homer to Matt Joyce; however, went three innings and only allowed a hit, plus a walk.

Brad Bergesen also was solid on the afternoon, going three scoreless innings; however, the bullpen got into a mess during the latter portion of the game.

Leading 5-2 in the ninth inning with the game in hand, Baltimore allowed the Tampa Bay to score five times in the frame due to some poor pitching and errors; however, they scored twice in the bottom of the ninth.

Well, the Orioles play the Pirates on Wednesday, and it will feature the return of Nick Markakis. For many fans, including myself, seeing Markakis on the field would be a welcome thing. It doesn’t look like Markakis will be playing the field, but will serve as a designated hitter until the team believes he is ready.

Markakis did win a Gold Glove last season, and has always been the steady type when it comes to fielding; however, his work at the plate has left a lot of questions.

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