Spring Training : Vero Beach, Fla.

Orioles 11, Dodgers 4

March 27, 2004|By Joe Christensen

Matt Riley pitched 4 1/3 scoreless innings, and the Orioles got home runs from Javy Lopez, Melvin Mora and Brian Roberts to end a five-game winless streak with an 11-4 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers at Holman Stadium.

The game featured two rain delays, and Riley came back from the first one to finish a dominant outing that probably solidified his hold on the Orioles' fifth starter spot. He gave up three hits and had one walk and four strikeouts.

Lopez launched his second home run of the spring over the center-field fence in the fourth inning when Dodgers starter Hideo Nomo hung a split-fingered fastball. That put the Orioles ahead 2-0.

Nomo gave up three runs in five innings in the loss. The Orioles (8-13) also scored two runs off National League Cy Young Award winner Eric Gagne, though only one of those was earned.

After Mora's bases-empty shot in the fifth, Roberts added a two-run homer for the Orioles in the sixth.

Orioles tonight

Exhibition opponent: Florida Marlins

Site: Fort Lauderdale (Fla.) Stadium

Time: 7:05

WHO'S HOT

Matt Riley

Starting to look as dominant as he did in those two September starts against Toronto.

Brian Roberts

After going hitless in five at-bats Thursday, he went 2-for-3 with a home run and a walk.

Rob Ramsay

The left-hander gave up a two-run homer to Jose Hernandez, but his inspirational story continued as the cancer survivor hung in there and recorded the game's final three outs.

WHO'S NOT

Jack Cust

He struck out in his only two at-bats, lowering his batting average to .167.

Keith Osik

Backup catcher candidate is 1-for-15 after going hitless in two at-bats yesterday. His competition, Geronimo Gil, has six hits in 13 at-bats.

Orioles bench

The Dodgers have been playing spring training games at Holman Stadium since 1953, and the ballpark still has the historic feel, without roofs over the dugouts. This is neat for fans, but not so neat for the players, especially when they're sitting in the rain.

INJURY REPORT

Jerry Hairston's fractured right ring finger was examined by a Baltimore hand specialist yesterday. He is expected to miss another five or six weeks. ... The only regular not in the starting lineup was Larry Bigbie, but that was because he played all 10 innings Thursday against the St. Louis Cardinals. Bigbie came off the bench and hit a run-scoring double off Gagne.

ARMS RACE

The Orioles are close to making it official that Riley has locked up the No. 5 starter's spot, which means fellow rookie Erik Bedard is probably headed to Triple-A Ottawa. Bedard, who pitches tonight against Florida, shouldn't take the news too hard. He has a 3.09 ERA, and if he keeps pitching that way, he should be in the Orioles' rotation by May. - Joe Christensen

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