FORT MYERS, Fla. -After getting off to rocky starts in his first two outings with the Orioles, Adam Eaton exhaled Monday when he escaped his first inning against the Minnesota Twins unscathed. But this time, it was his second inning that proved problematic.
Eaton, who is trying to cement one of three openings in the Orioles' rotation, was touched for three home runs and four runs in the sixth inning of his team's 8-7 loss to the Twins at Hammond Stadium. Pitching in relief of Jeremy Guthrie, Eaton wasn't scored on in his other three innings. However, it was impossible to overlook the sixth, when Eaton gave up home run balls to Delmon Young, Matt Tolbert and Brendan Harris, all three taking advantage of a strong wind blowing out to left field.
"Obviously, the wind was blowing out, but it doesn't discount the fact that those pitches weren't where I wanted them," said Eaton, who has a 5.73 ERA in three appearances with the Orioles after they signed him following his release from the Philadelphia Phillies. "When you give up homers, it's tough to minimize damage. They are what they are. You just have to bear down a little bit more and get the ball down in the zone."
Eaton surrendered eight hits, walked a batter and struck out four over the four innings. After his outing, Orioles manager Dave Trembley focused on the positives, pointing to the fact that "Eaton threw strikes, worked fast and raised his pitch count to 72."
Said Eaton: "I'm not exactly sure what's going to happen, but the arm feels fine, the velocity is kind of staying steady. ... I feel ready. I look forward to getting it going for real."
Team owner Peter Angelos took in his second straight game Monday, watching from a seat behind the president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail and next to the dugout. After arriving at his seat, Angelos exchanged pleasantries with Trembley, who said before the game that he would love the owner to be around the team more.
Second baseman Brian Roberts, third baseman Melvin Mora and nonroster pitcher John Parrish are the only three Orioles who have met Angelos.
"I don't think he's reluctant, I think he is rather shy," Trembley said. "I think he really trusts Andy MacPhail, which is commendable, but I think Mr. Angelos wants to stay out of the way. I've asked him, 'Come out, walk on the field, stand around the batting cage, be here.' He knows what's going on, believe me. This guy has a network. He's a very proper person. He doesn't flaunt who he is. Everybody knows who he is."
Before the game, Angelos was part of an Orioles contingent that visited City of Palms Park, the spring training facility the Boston Red Sox are vacating. The Orioles are searching for a long-term spring training home, with Fort Myers, Sarasota and Vero Beach among their options.
Around the horn
Koji Uehara took part in the regular workout with the nontraveling players Monday and is on schedule to start Tuesday's game against the Washington Nationals, according to his interpreter Jiwon Bang. ... Jim Johnson, who has been shut down with a balky right shoulder, is scheduled to throw a bullpen session Thursday. ... The Orioles added pitchers Jake Renshaw and Bobby Livingston from their minor league camp for Monday's game.
Baltimore Sun reporter Peter Schmuck contributed to this article.