Written by Chris Slade
Tonight's rubber match got under way at 7:05 ET with Ubaldo Jimenez and Hector Noesi on the mound. Jose Abreu broke a scoreless tie with a solo bomb in the 4th. The a White Sox added another run in the 5th on an RBI triple by leadoff man, Adam Eaton. The White Sox increased their lead to 4-0 in the 7th when Tyler Flowers hit a two-run double that chased Jimenez from the game. Nelson Cruz hit a grand slam in the bottom of the 8th to tie things up. David Lough scored on a wild pitch to walk it off in 12 innings.
Ubaldo Jimenez leads the AL in walks but showed good control tonight, especially early on in the game. He kicked off the first inning by retiring the side in order, including a pair of strikeouts. He cruised through the next two innings until Jose Abreu launched his 23rd homer in the 4th. Jimenez walked his first batter of the game in the 5th, which is an impressive feat for him. Unfortunately, that walk came to the leadoff batter Alejandro De Aza, who scored on Eaton's triple. He retired the side in order in the 6th and it looked like Ubaldo would finish with a quality start. Another lead off walk in the 7th scored on Jimenez when Tyler Flowers hit a two run double, leading to Ubaldo's exit with one out. He pitched a pretty good game tonight but will have to wait another start to try to pick up his first win at the Yard.
Final Line: 6.1 IP, 6 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 6 K, No Decision
Brad Brach replaced Jimenez midway through the 7th and worked out of the inning, inducing two groundouts.
Darren O'Day pitched the 8th and retired the side after allowing a leadoff single to Abreu.
With the game tied, Zach Britton was called on to work the top of the 9th. He retired the side on three groundouts.
Brian Matusz was able to preserve the tie.
Tommy Hunter was nails. He struck out Konerko on four curveballs.
Hector Noesi entered this game with an ERA well into the 5's but the kept the Orioles bats at bay for most of his outing. He wasn't blowing anyone aw aptly and received timely help from his defense on several key double plays. The Orioles struggled to make hard contact on him tonight.
In fact, until Nelson Cruz hit his grand slam in the 8th, the Orioles hadn't recorded an extra base hit all game. They got nine hits off Noesi over 7+ innings but weren't able to make them count. Thankfully, the timely Cruz homer bailed the offense out of a lackluster night at the plate.
Nick Markakis had a clutch hit with David Lough aboard in the 12th inning.
Defensive Highlights/ Lowlights
Chris Davis made a nice diving catch to rob Jose Abreu of a hit in the 6th inning.
Manny Machado made a smart decision to throw home real quick on a ground ball in the 5th that caught Adam Eaton at the plate trying to score.
Key Moments In The Game
The biggest moment in the game for the Orioles obviously took place with two outs and the bases loaded. The O's needed a grand slam in the worst way to tie the game up and Nelson Cruz delivered.
Other Notes/ Musings
Nelson Cruz nearly hit one out earlier in the game but De Aza made a nice catch at the wall.
Ubaldo Jimenez entered this game recieving the least amount of run support in the American League and nearly took his 7th loss in 8 starts at home had Cruz not delivered.
With storms moving into the Baltimore area, the start of extra innings was delayed until 11:10 ET.
The Orioles have off tomorrow night.
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