Devil Rays 10, Orioles 7
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP)—No lead is safe against the Tampa Bay Devil Rays.
“It’s weird,” Huff said. “Everybody is so young and hungry to win. Being around here the last three years, you get down in a situation like that the last couple years, it would be like dead in that dugout. This year it’s like, you’re down 5-0 in the second inning, anything is possible.”
Ordonez and Anderson are tied for the team lead with 18 RBIs.
“It’s been fun for me, personally, watching this team play,” Tampa Bay manager Lou Piniella said. “That’s been our posture all year. We’ve come from behind a lot. That tells a lot about the type of baseball this team is playing. It shows you, keep battling for 27 outs and you’ve got a chance.”
Orioles manager Mike Hargrove returned after missing the previous six games to be with his mother, who was hospitalized in Perryton, Texas, with an infected gallbladder. She underwent surgery twice in the past week.
Ordonez hit a two-run double during a four-run second inning that pulled the Devil Rays to 5-4.
He scored from third to tie it at 5 in the fourth when pitcher Rick Helling (1-2) was charged with an error for an errant pickoff attempt to first. Baldelli’s sacrifice fly and Huff’s solo homer, which snapped Tampa Bay’s six-game homerless stretch, made it 7-5.
“A big part of this team is, no matter what inning it is or how many runs we’re down, there’s never dead silence in the dugout where things seem pretty bleak,” Baldelli said.
Anderson’s fifth-inning RBI single put Tampa Bay up 8-5. He also had a run-scoring double in the second.
Pinch-hitter Terry Shumpert added a sacrifice fly for the Devil Rays in the bottom half, and Baldelli had an RBI single in the eighth.
“We scored five runs in the first two innings and then hit some balls right at people,” Hargrove said. “Then Zambrano came in and threw the ball very well.”
“I really don’t think about it enough to surprise myself,” Baldelli said. “Especially when things are working out and the team is playing well. I try not to mess with anything that seems to be working.”
Helling lasted just 3 2-3 innings, giving up seven runs and 11 hits. The right-hander threw eight sharp innings in a 4-0 win over the Devil Rays last Monday.
“It was a combination of things,” Helling said. “I was pulling off the ball and I didn’t really make the adjustment. But give their hitters credit, they had pretty good at-bats.”
Tampa Bay’s Steve Parris allowed five runs and eight hits in four innings.He is 0-5 in his past nine starts dating to last season.
Baldelli has a hit in 22 of 23 games. … Batista’s homer was his third this season off Tampa Bay LHP Nick Bierbrodt. … Anderson has a career-high11-game hitting streak.