Game in review

March 01, 1998|By Joe Strauss

Highlights and lowlights from the Orioles' 7-5 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers:

Ups and downs

Up: Cal Ripken -- Ripken produced an infield single, doubled to the base of the left-field wall then, replaced by a pinch runner in the fourth, went to a back field for conditioning. Fun day.

Up: Harold Baines -- Something rarely seen in '97, a home run from the designated hitter.

Up: Writer's cramp -- Managing his first game since 1986, Ray Miller employed 24 players and began to substitute after the third inning. His lineup card bled red ink by game's end.

Up: Ryan Minor -- Ripken's heir apparent played with a bearing.

Down: Terry Mathews -- It's only spring training but

The bats

The Orioles pounded 14 hits, five for extra bases, and led 7-2 when Miller emptied his bench after five innings. Miller had decided to start Baines over Joe Carter because of the presence of a right-handed starting pitcher. Orioles minor-leaguers gave a strong accounting with a 3-for-8 outing and RBIs from left fielder Jesus Tavarez and catcher Melvin Rosario. Eric Davis drilled the Orioles' first hit of spring, a line single to lead off the second.

The arms

Mike Mussina called himself less than sharp but who isn't in his first start of spring? In 29 pitches Mussina cleared two innings. Nerio Rodriguez suffered a troubled outing, allowing two runs (one earned) on five hits. His biggest crime occurred when he crossed up and nearly decapitated catcher Chris Hoiles on what was judged a run-scoring passed ball. In his first appearance since being booed off the field at Camden Yards last October, Mathews surrendered two runs, including a homer by Todd Zeile, the first batter he faced.

The rest

Left fielder B. J. Surhoff and right fielder Davis were the first position players to leave the game. Both departed after three innings. Surhoff suffered a jammed finger on his right hand when he dove back to first base in the second inning. Davis and Jeff Reboulet stole bases. Davis later high-stepped off third base but could not draw a throw from Dodgers second baseman Eric Young.

Quote of the day

"This is a tough lineup to crack. You look up and down and there aren't any glaring weaknesses. The guys on this team know what they're doing. It's good to see."

-- Carter, who contributed a double in two at-bats.

Pub Date: 3/01/98

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