Six-run rally helps Orioles top Braves
The Baltimore Orioles had been waiting a long time.
For the past two weeks, the Orioles' offense had been dormant. Losers of 10 of their previous 12 games, Baltimore broke out with a six-run rally in a messy seventh inning that led to an 8-4 win over the Atlanta Braves on Saturday night.
The Orioles scored their most runs in the past 16 games.
"We needed a big inning at some point. We needed a big game," Brian Roberts said. "It didn't necessarily have to come in one inning."
Roberts tied a season-high with four hits.
Adam Jones, Melvin Mora, Aubrey Huff and Nick Markakis had been slumping, and they all contributed.
"It's tough when you get four or five guys at the same time," Roberts said. "Then, this will get us going for a month or two."
"I'm not going to say that every ball we've hit for the past three weeks has been hard hit - right at somebody, but we've had good at-bats," Roberts said. "I truly believe we've swung the bats better than we've looked like."
A wild pitch, an error and two walks helped the Orioles' comeback.
Baltimore trailed 4-2 entering the seventh, but Eric O'Flaherty (1-1) allowed the four batters he faced to get on base.
Markakis drew a leadoff walk, and singles by Huff and Mora produced a run. It was Mora's first RBI in 25 games, breaking the longest dry spell of his career.
Luke Scott hit a tying single, but Mora was thrown out at third on the play. Peter Moylan relieved and gave up a single to Nolan Reimold and walked Matt Wieters. The fourth ball to Wieters was a wild pitch that scored Scott to give Baltimore a 5-4 lead.
Robert Andino reached on an error by Moylan to load the bases, and Roberts hit a two-run double. Jones capped the burst with a sacrifice fly.
"I eventually gave up enough runs to lose the game. There's no worse feeling," Moylan said.
Orioles manager Dave Trembley said that he told hitting coach Terry Crowley before the inning that he thought the team would score five runs in the seventh.
"This is a start," Trembley said. "We were a lot more patient."
Jones gave the Orioles a 2-0 lead with his 13th home run of the year in the first inning.
Brian Bass (4-1) was the winner. He allowed two hits in three innings in relief of starter Rich Hill, who gave up four runs in the fourth.
Danys Baez pitched a scoreless eighth and George Sherrill worked the ninth.
Hill, who has battled wildness the past two seasons, let five straight Braves reach base in the fourth. He walked two batters and gave up a single that loaded the bases with one out.
Matt Diaz hit an RBI single and Jeff Francoeur had a ground-rule double that scored two runs. Kelly Johnson's sacrifice fly made it 4-2.
Braves starter Kenshin Kawakami worked five innings, giving up two runs and seven hits.
NOTES: Jones' home run was the first by an Oriole other than Scott or Reimold since May 27. ... Atlanta 3B Chipper Jones was 0 for 5. He's hitless in his past 18 at-bats. ... RF Francoeur's nabbing of Mora was his sixth outfield assist. ... Markakis recorded his second assist in two games. He leads American League outfielders with seven.