Written by Wally Booth
It is always best to win game 1 of the double header as it allows you to relax a little more and obviously have the chance to sweep. The O's were sending ace Chris Tillman to the hill in the second game to do just that along with the return of Manny Machado!!! Chris must have been very effected by the days off and the delayed starts tonight. He was not sharp at all to start tonight. Chris was all over the place with his location in the first inning. He could not get into any kind of rhythm at all. Chris labored throwing 49 pitches, walking 3, 2 of them with the bases loaded to give the Pirates the early 2-0 lead. He did settle down a little. He struck out 8 batters, one from his career high. The first inning just killed him. He was only able to get through 4 1/3 innings throwing 112 pitches. This is the second start in a row for Tillman where he did not look good to start the game. He was roughed up for 7 runs in his last outing. The O's can not afford Tillman to continue with this trend and I do not think he will.
The O's trailed again in this game into the later innings 4-0 and had not done much off Pirates starter Brandon Cumpton until the sixth inning. Nick Markakis stayed hot leading off with a single. He went to second on a pass ball while Manny Machado was at the plate. Machado and Nelson Cruz both grounded out and it looked like the O's were about to strand Nick at second but then the rally came. Adam Jones doubled driving in Markakis and it was 4-1. Matt Wieters singled driving in Jones, it was 4-2. Steve Pearce continued his big day doubling to right sending Wieters to 3rd and the O's finally chased Brandon Cumpton. Bryan Morris came in to pitch for the Pirates. J.J. Hardy scorched a single to left, it looked like it was hit way to hard to drive in both runs. Orioles 3rd base coach Bobby Dickerson being aggressive waved in Pearce and there was a play at the plate. Pearce dove head first to the back side of home plate trying to avoid the tag of Pirates catcher Chris Stewart. It looked like Pearce was out but Chris Stewart tagged Pearce without the ball. Stewart thought he had caught the ball and went to tag Pearce but the ball had fallen out of his glove and Pearce was safe. The O's tied the game at four. What a come back day for Steve Pearce.
The Pirates came back the very next inning to take the lead 5-4 taking the wind out of the sails a little bit. In the bottom of the seventh, red hot Nick Markakis connected for his second home run of the day and season tying the game at 5. The O's just kept battling back tonight. The O's bullpen was very solid tonight keeping the O's in the game allowing them to come back and holding the Pirates right where they were. The game remained tied and went into extra innings. Matt Wieters led off the tenth inning crushing a high fast ball right down the line and over the wall onto the flag court off Justin Wilson to send the O's to a huge come back, walk off win!!
The O's showed a lot of heart tonight. They refused to give in and they did not. This was huge tonight for the O's as they have to make a quick trip to Minneapolis tonight for a three game set with the Twins. Ubaldo Jimenez who was already in Minneapolis will start tomorrow for the O's. They need him to put April behind him and give the O's at least 7 innings tomorrow as the bullpen was taxed today. They can ill afford him to pitch 5 innings or less.
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