Arrieta pleased with command in Orioles' 8-2 win over Pirates

Starter allows eight hits in four innings but doesn't walk anyone

March 14, 2011|By Dan Connolly, The Baltimore Sun

SARASOTA, Fla. — Jake Arrieta isn't concerned about the eight hits he gave up in the Orioles' 8-2 exhibition victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Monday.

What was important to him is that he pitched four innings and didn't walk anyone.

"I don't really look at the results all that much," Arrieta said. "One thing that I do look at is walks. If I can limit the walks, those base hits scattered throughout there aren't going to hurt as bad. That's a big key for me as well as the rest of our staff."

Arrieta threw 67 pitches, 49 for strikes, while allowing two earned runs. With his best breaking stuff of the spring, he struck out six batters, including the opposing pitcher twice.

"I thought it was a really positive outing. A ton of strikes," said Arrieta, whose ERA is at 4.00 in nine innings. "I felt comfortable with all my pitches. My depth on the breaking ball was very good, same thing with the slider. My changeup is coming along. I don't think I could be happier with the progress up to this point."

The Orioles took the lead against Pittsburgh's Kevin Correia with a three-run fourth that included RBI singles by Nick Markakis and Mark Reynolds and a sacrifice fly by Vladimir Guerrero. They padded the lead with another three-run inning, the seventh, against reliever Joe Beimel, who considered signing with the Orioles this winter.

The seventh included an RBI double by Nolan Reimold and Jake Fox's team-leading fourth homer of the spring.

Outfielder Randy Winn hit his first homer as an Oriole in the fifth, a ball that landed over the fence along with center fielder Andrew McCutchen's glove. McCutchen jumped over the wall, retrieved the glove and jumped back, to the applause of the fans at Ed Smith Stadium.

McCutchen was also involved in a collision at home plate in the fifth when he was thrown out by Markakis trying to score from second on a single to right. McCutchen collided with Orioles catcher Matt Wieters and wasn't particularly happy that Wieters fully blocked the plate in a spring game.

"I tried to avoid the tag. I don't know what he was thinking," McCutchen said. "It's spring training. We are not trying to get hurt. I wasn't expecting that much contact. I'm OK though."

The Orioles added an eighth run in the eighth on Nick Green's first spring homer.

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