Reimold walk-off gives O's series sweep
O's stage comeback with four-run 11th inning
BALTIMORE -- Cross off two questions from Dave Trembley's list of pet peeves.
Baltimore's manager saw his team erase two trends with one victory on Wednesday, a 12-10 win over Toronto that gave the Orioles their first three-game sweep of the season. Baltimore also snapped an 0-23 string when trailing after seven innings and overcame a two-run deficit in extra innings to earn the win.
For Trembley, whose team had had four chances to earn a sweep, the victory was sweet indeed. Now, after falling short against New York, Tampa Bay, Texas and Washington, Trembley can turn the page.
"I don't have to answer that," Trembley said when asked about getting the sweep out of the way. "I don't have to answer a lot of questions, but I'll be more than glad to answer anything you like today. I'm here for you today."
And his team was there for him. The Orioles fell behind early and trailed by as many as six runs, but never let the game get away. Baltimore scored five runs in the eighth inning to knot the score, and after Aaron Hill hit a two-run homer in the top of the 11th, Nolan Reimold answered with a three-run shot in the bottom half.
Facing former Blue Jays closer B.J. Ryan, Nick Markakis led off the 11th with a single to right and was followed by Aubrey Huff, who popped out to third base. Brian Wolfe then replaced Ryan and allowed back-to-back singles to Melvin Mora and Luke Scott to bring home Markakis and put runners on first and third. The next batter was Reimold, who sent the third pitch he saw from Wolfe -- a 93-mph fastball -- into the left-field stands.
"I had two chances to win the game before that, so I was happy I was able to come through," said Reimold, who has four homers since being promoted from Triple-A Norfolk. "I think us having a comeback win like that is really something to rally behind. We didn't give up, made every at-bat count and were able to pull it out."
The victory gave the Orioles their first three-game winning streak of the season and pushed the Blue Jays to a season-high nine-game skid.
Reimold's homer sparked a jubilant celebration. Robert Andino, who had his first career four-hit game, stalked Reimold and delivered a shaving-cream pie during the rookie's postgame interview. Moments later, Andino was greeted by a facefull of yogurt when he went back into the clubhouse. Juvenile antics aside, the players were all united in their emotions.
"I was just telling Nicky [Markakis] that this is getting real fun right now," said Huff. "I was telling him that this is starting to feel like the end of my career in Tampa, when the young guys are coming up and putting together some real good starts and the young position players are doing well. I'm feeling that kind of thing here.
"It seems like every young guy that has come up has done a pretty good job. I know it's early and they are going to struggle at times, but now is the time to get them up and give them a chance."
Baltimore starter Rich Hill, whose past troubles have revolved around his ability to throw strikes, fell into the same trap on Wednesday. The left-hander lost the strike zone and walked two of the first three batters he faced in the fourth inning, and the Blue Jays (27-23) took advantage by posting a six-run rally.
The Orioles (21-26) answered in the eighth with a five-run outburst of their own and came close to going ahead. Andino and Adam Jones delivered run-scoring hits in that inning, and the latter player was thrown out at the plate while trying to score the go-ahead run. From there, the two teams were scoreless until the 11th.
"That's about as much fun as I've had in a long time," said Trembley. "That's reminiscent of some of those games we played last year -- way behind and came back late and won. It was just such a great, great atmosphere in our dugout today. And I'm glad we won because I'm glad we got the win for the team, but also for [Danys] Baez. He deserved to get the win. He went a extra mile for us. So did a lot of other guys today, but especially Baez."
Baez (4-1) worked three innings to get the win, and he resolutely finished the 11th after allowing Hill's home run. One other pitcher -- Toronto starter Roy Halladay -- distinguished himself in the marathon game. Halladay worked seven innings and stranded three runners in the seventh, leaving with a five-run lead.
"We made him work early in the game," Trembley said, lauding his team's effort against Halladay. "But he's one of the game's premiere pitchers. What he does is he attacks both sides of the plate with very good movement. But I didn't sense they were going to give it to him. I didn't sense that at all."
Reimold, a former second-round Draft pick, entered the game in the eighth inning as a pinch-hitter and struck out swinging. The youngster remained in the game and got back up in the ninth with two runners on base but was called out on a borderline 3-2 pitch. Finally, two innings later, he redeemed himself and his team.
"That was a huge at-bat," said Huff of Reimold. "To me, when you have a young guy that goes through a situation like that -- two at-bats where he could have won the game -- and he comes up that third time, you want to see him come through so bad. To see that kind of at-bat just shows you what kind of head he has on his shoulders. He definitely belongs here. You can just see by the way he's swinging the at-bat. Four homers already."
Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.