Orioles score seven runs in eighth, down Jays

Fitzgerald Cecilio – 4E Sports Reporter

Saratosa, FL, United States (4E Sports) – Right fielder Francisco Peguero smacked a three-run triple as the Baltimore Orioles scored seven runs in the eighth en route to a 9-7 win over the Toronto Blue Jays in Saturday’s Grapefruit League action at Ed Smith Stadium.

Peguero went 2-for-2 with three RBIs while Chris Davis and Xavier Paul knocked in two runs apiece as the Orioles improved to 2-0 in spring training.

Josh Stinson gave up two hits and a run in one inning to earn the victory while Evan Meek pitched a scoreless ninth for his first save. Starter Miguel Gonzalez pitched two innings, allowing a run on three hits for the Orioles.

Nelson Cruz, who walked, both scored on the play. Cruz, serving as the designated hitter in his Orioles debut, grounded out in his first at-bat.

“As soon as I came into the stadium, I missed that,” Cruz said of his first taste of Grapefruit League action. “Good at-bats, I guess. With more at-bats, I’ll feel better.”

Nelson Cruz, who served as a designated hitter, finished 0-for-1 with two walks in his Orioles debut.

“As soon as I came into the stadium, I missed that,” Cruz said of his first taste of Grapefruit League action. “Good at-bats, I guess. With more at-bats, I’ll feel better.”

Blue Jays starter Drew Hutchison, vying for the fifth spot in the rotation, held a dangerous Orioles lineup to just one hit over two innings. Pitching in his first spring game since 2012, Hutchison struck out four.

The Blue Jays got on the board first when third baseman Jared Goedert singled in Chris Getz, who hit a two-out triple off Gonzalez in the second inning.

It was the only run Gonzalez, expected to be in Baltimore’s rotation, allowed over two innings in his spring debut. Steve Johnson followed with six impressive outs, breezing through the third and fourth innings with a pair of strikeouts.

Davis hit a two-run double in the bottom of the third inning off righty Marcus Stroman, giving the Orioles a 2-1 lead.

In the sixth, Blue Jays pinch-hitter Dan Johnson went deep off Orioles bullpen hopeful Edgmer Escalona as part of a five-run frame that saw Toronto take the big 7-2 lead heading into the bottom of the eighth.

Before the game, the Orioles observed a moment of silence to honor public relations director Monica Barlow, who passed away on Friday morning. Barlow, 36, was diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer in September 2009.

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