Hits and misses

June 23, 1996|By Buster Olney

On the field: The Orioles' best threat in the first eight innings against Kansas City's Tim Belcher came in the first, when Brady Anderson led off with a double, his 17th of the season and his 43rd extra-base hit of the year. However, the Orioles failed to advance Anderson -- Luis Polonia popped to short, Roberto Alomar flied to center and Rafael Palmeiro flied to right -- and the Orioles' offense sputtered.

In the dugout: So dominant was Orioles' right-hander Scott Erickson that if the game had gone into extra innings, Johnson planned on pitching Erickson in the top of the 10th. Through the first nine innings, Erickson allowed only one earned run and eight hits.

In the clubhouse: The Orioles wore black jerseys, and for eight innings, they played miserably. But they came back and won, and, Johnson said, the jerseys "redeemed themselves." Had they lost? "There would've been a pile of black jerseys [outside the clubhouse]," Johnson said.

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