In one of the stranger games of a truly weird 2012 season, the Orioles blew out the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Center Tuesday by a final of 12-0. The game was delayed slightly by rain, despite the retractable dome. The Orioles were one-hit through four innings. Heading into the fifth, Jays starter Carlos Villanueva (L, 7-5) had faced just 12 batters, the absolute minimum. But between the fifth and ninth innings—in a span of 15 outs—the O’s picked up 12 runs on 17 hits. That’s pretty weird.
The one thing that did remain consistent throughout the night for the O’s was the pitching. Led by starter Zach Britton (W, 5-1), three Orioles pitchers combined for a four-hit shutout. The Jays picked up just four hits (three singles) and two walks. They struck out ten times, and never made it past second base.
A close, scoreless game turned into something altogether different in the Orioles fifth. Adam Jones led off with his 31st double of the year. One out later, Chris Davis walked, and then Mark Reynolds kept up his long-ball assault with a towering, three-run jack over the left field wall (17).
A Nick Markakis single, JJ Hardy double, and Nate McLouth sac fly added one more in the sixth to make it 4-0. In the seventh, a leadoff hit from Davis, a one-out double from Manny Machado, sac fly from Robert Andino, double from Markakis, single from Hardy, and a Blue Jays balk gave the Orioles three more.
The O’s sent ten men to the plate in the eighth, picking up five singles and two doubles. Throw one Jays error into the mix, and the Orioles had a five spot in inning number eight, and a 12-0 lead.
The Orioles—tied for first in the AL East now, take on the Blue Jays again Wednesday night. Brandon Morrow (8-5, 2.93) goes for Toronto in the 7:05 contest. The Orioles counter with Miguel Gonzalez (6-3, 3.31).
- Britton’s line: 7IP, 0R, 4H, 2BB, 8K. His ERA falls to 4.15.
- O’s pitching retired 16 of the final 17 Blue Jays to come to the plate.
- Every Oriole starter had at least one hit or one RBI.
- Three hits each for Markakis, Davis, Reynolds, and Machado.
- Seven extra-base hits for the O’s, who went 7/14 with RISP.
- The win, combined with another Yankees loss in Tampa, ties the Orioles atop the American League East for the first time, this late in a season, since 1997.
- Andino: 0/4, 1RBI, 1K, 4LOB. His average in now down to .219. Take away his hot April (.311), and he is at .192 for the year.