FORT MYERS, Fla. — After his last outing, likely Orioles Opening Day starter Jeremy Guthrie vowed to work on throwing more quality strikes. He said he felt that he accomplished that Sunday against the Minnesota Twins even though his final line wasn't overly impressive.
In the Orioles' 3-0 loss to the Twins in front of a sellout crowd of an announced 7,924 at Hammond Stadium, Guthrie allowed two earned runs on four hits while striking out two over three innings. He threw 31 of his 41 pitches for strikes.
"The quality of pitches was much, much better today," Guthrie said. "I probably would have been better off had I missed the middle of the plate. They may have hit it at somebody instead of off the end. The execution was much, much better today. That's good, that's a positive. I really haven't felt that command the last game or in my bullpen [session], but today, I felt comfortable that I can actually throw to both sides of the plate with a couple of different pitches. The next step from what I said last time definitely happened today, so that's a good thing."
Guthrie allowed an RBI single to Luke Hughes in the first inning and an RBI single to Tsuyoshi Nishioka in the third. Alexi Casilla scored from first on Nishioka's single after the Orioles' defense fell asleep.
Casilla raced home after right fielder Randy Winn flipped the ball back to second baseman Robert Andino, who held on to the ball, not realizing there was a potential play at the plate.
Nishioka added an RBI triple in the fifth inning off of Rick VandenHurk, who allowed one run on two hits and four walks over three innings. VandenHurk has walked five batters in five innings this spring.
The Orioles' offense did next to nothing, managing just four hits (all singles). Nolan Reimold, Jake Fox, Felix Pie and Craig Tatum had the hits.
The Orioles fell to 4-2-1 in the Grapefruit League.