Orioles 2, White Sox 1(10)

The Baltimore Orioles keep doing the improbable under Buck

Showalter.

Adam Jones singled in the winning run with two outs in the 10th

inning, and the resurgent Orioles walked off with a 2-1 victory

over the Chicago White Sox on Friday night.

Baltimore improved to 4-0 since Showalter took over as manager

earlier this week. The four-game run matches its longest winning

streak of the season and represents one-eighth of the total

victories the team had before Showalter arrived.

Not only that, but Friday’s win gave the Orioles a 4-54 record

when scoring fewer than four runs.

Is Showalter really the difference? If nothing else, his

reputation for not tolerating mistakes has gotten the attention of

his players.

”People are on their P’s and Q’s and playing the game,” Jones

said. ”We’re just playing the game smarter, not really giving them

too many outs. We’re making all the double plays, the small things

that we weren’t doing. Just playing the game smarter, I would

say.”

The victory was the 836th of Showalter’s career, moving him past

Don Zimmer into sole possession of 64th place on the career list.

He took none of the credit for the last four.

”So far, so good,” Showalter said. ”The guys are playing hard

and getting a return on it. I’m happy for them.”

Nick Markakis had a season-high four hits for the Orioles, who

earned their second straight walkoff victory.

It was the third loss in 12 games for the first-place White Sox,

whose lone run came on a homer by Gordon Beckham.

”We fell short offensively tonight. It was a well-played,

well-pitched game,” Chicago’s Mark Kotsay said. ”We were on the

losing end, which we have to deal with.”

Chicago manager Ozzie Guillen hadn’t faced Baltimore before this

series, so he was reluctant to say whether Showalter has helped

improve the team with the worst record in the major leagues.

”The manager (doesn’t) make baseball teams; they make them play

better,” Guillen said. ”I think when you pitch the way they

pitched against us, and we know what kind of offense they have, you

win games.”

Markakis started the game-winning uprising with a one-out single

off Tony Pena (3-2). After Ty Wigginton flied out, Markakis took

third on a single by Luke Scott. Jones then bounced a single into

left field to win it.

Fireworks exploded as the Orioles celebrated behind first base,

many of them repeatedly pounding Jones on the back.

Two innings earlier, Jones popped out against Pena with the

bases loaded.

”Redemption. That’s what I based the at-bat on,” Jones said.

”He got away with one, be he didn’t get away with it twice.”

Alfredo Simon (3-2) pitched two scoreless innings to earn the

victory.

Baltimore missed a chance to take the lead in the eighth inning

after Chris Sale, the 13th overall pick in the 2010 draft, launched

his major league career by walking Brian Roberts and giving up a

single to Markakis. Pena ended the threat by striking out

pinch-hitter Corey Patterson on a 3-2 pitch with the bases loaded

and two outs.

Orioles starter Brad Bergesen allowed one run, five hits and a

walk in seven innings but failed to secure his first win since May

12. The right-hander is 0-7 in his last 12 starts.

Chicago’s John Danks gave up three hits and a run before getting

an out but finished strong, allowing one run and six hits in seven

innings.

”It was fun,” Danks said. ”We obviously would have liked to

have been on the other side of this, but it was one of those games

where we felt like any mistake could be the ball game.”

Baltimore went up 1-0 in the first on singles by Roberts,

Markakis and Wigginton.

Beckham tied it in the third with his sixth homer, four of which

have come in his last 23 games.

After that, the pitchers took control.

Bergesen retired 11 of 13 batters after Beckham’s drive, a

streak that ended with a one-out triple by Kotsay in the seventh.

Alexei Ramirez followed with a dribbler down the first base line

that Wigginton picked up barehanded before throwing out Kotsay at

the plate.

”That was a big play by Wiggy,” Showalter said.

Ramirez then stole second, and A.J. Pierzynski hit a drive that

Markakis snared at the warning track in right. Pierzynski reacted

by angrily throwing down his batting helmet after rounding first

base.

Showalter drew cheers in the bottom half when he came out to

argue with first base umpire Jerry Crawford, who ruled that right

fielder Carlos Quentin caught a sinking liner off the bat of Felix

Pie. Showalter contended that the ball was trapped, and although

the call wasn’t overturned, replays backed Showalter’s

assessment.

NOTES: Chicago OF Alex Rios sat out the game with a finger

injury. He was 4 for 34 in his previous eight games. … Orioles SS

Cesar Izturis also got the day off, delaying his quest for career

hit 1,000 (he has 999).