Orioles 7, Brewers 2
BALTIMORE (AP)—Facing a pitcher he’d never seen before, Jay Gibbons did something he’d never done before.
“That’s my first grand slam ever,” he said. “I can’t remember ever hitting one in my life.”
The drive, on a 1-2 pitch, landed in the front row of the right-field bleachers.
“Until I got in the batter’s box, I didn’t realize he had a real live fastball,” Gibbons said. “I shortened my swing, and it barely crept out of here.”
Gibbons added a two-run homer to make it 7-1 in the seventh. His six RBIs were a career high.
“That’s my job, to drive in runs,” he said.
Melvin Mora walked and scored ahead of Gibbons in the fifth, but his 23-game hitting streak ended with an 0-for-2 night. He was also hit by a pitch.
Eddie Perez drove in both runs for the Brewers, who have lost five of six.
Ponson (9-3) allowed one run and six hits in six innings. The right-hander struck out four, walked two and forced the Brewers to go 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position.
Ponson twice had to wait in the clubhouse during rain delays, but he had enough left to improve to 8-1 over his last nine starts.
“Sidney did a tremendous job under very difficult circumstances,” Orioles manager Mike Hargrove said.
Rusch, winless in 12 starts since April 8, was charged with four runs in 4 1-3 innings. He loaded the bases in the fifth before being replaced by Durocher, who retired Jeff Conine before Gibbons connected.
“It’s frustrating,” Rusch said. “It was a tight ballgame, and to come out of the inning down five, you never like to see that happen.”
Brewers manager Ned Yost said, “That’s been his luck. If it wasn’t for bad luck he wouldn’t have any. But I thought he was much better.”
The weather couldn’t have been much worse.
After Ponson retired the first batter in the rain, home plate umpire Jim Reynolds called for the tarp. A delay of 1 hour, 50 minutes ensued.
Rain also halted play in the fourth for 32 minutes. The Orioles have endured five rain delays totaling 6 hours, 48 minutes over the past three nights.
The Orioles got a run in the second when Conine drew a leadoff walk, took second on a single by B.J. Surhoff and scored on a two-out single by DeiviCruz.
Mora’s hitting streak was the third-longest in team history behind Eric Davis (30) and Rafael Palmeiro (24). … Brewers pitcher Brooks Kieschnick went 1-for-4 as the DH. It was his first start of the season. … The Orioles will activate pitcher Rodrigo Lopez from the disabled list Sunday and start the right-hander against the Brewers. … Rusch is 0-5 with a 10.15 ERA in eightcareer games against Baltimore.