McLemore, Pennington do tag team on Tigers

June 25, 1993|By Milton Kent | Milton Kent,Staff Writer

Mark McLemore and Brad Pennington are a most unlikely pair, what with Pennington moving and talking a mile a minute, while the unflappable McLemore remains way too cool.

But they teamed up long enough last night to give the Orioles a 6-2 win and a three-game sweep of the Detroit Tigers.

Pennington earned his fourth save of the year the hard way, shutting down the Tigers for three innings. He didn't allow a hit, walked two and struck out four. In the seventh inning he escaped from a bases-loaded, one-out jam.

"I feel exhausted," said Pennington. "That's the first time I went three innings in a long time. I don't have any problems going the innings, but I had what seemed like an hour break. I'm a person who, whenI'm out there, I like to get in and out of there quick."

Meanwhile, McLemore was saving the day for Pennington with an impressive backhand over-the-head catch of a drive to

right-center by Alan Trammell to end the seventh.

Then in the eighth, McLemore gave Pennington some breathing space with a two-run double off Detroit reliever Tom Bolton. The ball got past Cecil Fielder down the right-field line to score Jack Voigt and Harold Reynolds, boost the Orioles' lead to four and run McLemore's batting average to .333 (23-for-69) with runners in scoring position.

"It [the double] wasn't pretty, but it was effective," said McLemore, who drove in three runs last night. "I was just trying to put the ball in play with two strikes."

McLemore's most impressive work may have come the inning before when he tracked down Trammell's drive.

Pennington entered the game in the seventh with runners on first and second and one run in and nobody out. The rookie left-hander struck out pinch hitter Dan Gladden, then walked Mickey Tettleton before striking out catcher Chad Kreuter.

Pennington said he put the pitch to Trammell, a fastball away, where he wanted to, but the third baseman drove it to the gap anyway.

"He hit it well," said McLemore. "I was hoping I could get under it and get to it before it got to the wall or to the seats. It was a run. The catch came at a time where if I didn't catch it, they would have scored three runs. The hit definitely helped out, but I can't say which is more important. They both helped."

If McLemore couldn't decide which was more important, the hit or the catch, Pennington sure could.

"When I looked out and saw Mac's back, I thought, 'Oh God,' " said Pennington. "That was a horrible feeling. When he came down with it, I let out the biggest sigh."

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