BALTIMORE (AP) -- The box score credited Corey Patterson with two home runs. Those who watched the ninth inning know differently.
Patterson hit two solo shots and made a game-ending catch at the wall to carry the Baltimore Orioles past the Tampa Bay Devil Rays
7-5 on Tuesday night."They should both name a street and a day for him," Devil Rays manager Joe Maddon deadpanned. "Quite a performance. What are you going to do? Two homers. He actually had three, counting the one he stole."After connecting off Travis Harper in the sixth and Chad Orvella in the eighth, Patterson robbed pinch-hitter Greg Norton of a
game-tying homer with a leaping catch in center with a man on and two outs in the ninth."He hit two and took one away. That's three -- for me," Orioles manager Sam Perlozzo said.It was Patterson's sixth career two-homer game, the first since May 10, 2005, for the Chicago Cubs against the New York Mets.But he enjoyed his catch at the seven-foot wall even more."Defense is going to win games," he said. "I didn't think it was going that far, but it did and I was able to stick with it. ... Luckily I was able to jump over the wall."The catch sealed the Devil Rays' season-high fifth straight defeat."We just came up a bit short. Two feet? Eighteen inches? I have no idea," Maddon said. "You saw it. Good for him. It's a tremendous effort, a game he'll never forget, I'm sure."Norton won't soon forget it, either."I knew I hit it pretty well, but I didn't know if it was going to get out," he said. "Then I saw him jump. ... I must not be living right."Miguel Tejada also homered and Ramon Hernandez hit a two-run triple for the Orioles, who improved to 6-2 against the Devil Rays this season.Rodrigo Lopez (3-7) allowed three earned runs and eight hits in 6 2/3 innings for the Orioles. The right-hander has won two straight starts following a seven-game skid that began after he beat the Devil Rays on Opening Day.Chris Ray worked the ninth for his 14th save in 14 chances, but he needed the assist from Patterson."The way Corey was approaching it, it looked like he was going to camp underneath it," Ray said. "When I saw him jump, my heart skipped a little beat there."Damon Hollins, Ty Wigginton and Aubrey Huff homered for Tampa Bay, now 1-7 on its longest road trip of the season, which concludes
Thursday. Huff went 3-for-4 and scored twice.Devil Rays starter Doug Waechter (0-4) gave up five runs and five hits in five innings. The right-hander is winless in 15 starts
since Aug. 27 and 0-3 with a 6.67 ERA in five career starts against Baltimore."I should have thrown better than I did. What else can I say?" Waechter said. "I had a couple of innings that I threw the ball well, but I was inconsistent. I left it up in the fifth and they took advantage."The Orioles made it 5-1 with a three-run fifth. Kevin Millar walked, took third on a double by Nick Markakis and scored on a deep fly ball by Brian Roberts. Markakis scored on a sacrifice fly by Melvin Mora, and Tejada followed with his 14th home run.After Wigginton hit a two-run drive in the sixth, Patterson homered in the bottom half.Joey Gathright chased Lopez with a run-scoring groundout in the seventh, and Huff got the Devil Rays to 6-5 with a solo shot off Todd Williams in the eighth.The Orioles went up 2-0 in the first inning on a two-run, two-out triple by Hernandez. Hollins hit his sixth homer in the second, a drive to center estimated at 420 feet.Waechter rebounded from his shaky start by retiring nine straight batters until Patterson reached on a throwing error by the pitcher with two outs in the fourth. Patterson then stole second -- his 18th steal in 19 tries -- before Jeff Conine lined out to short.
Tampa Bay is 1-8 in Waechter's nine starts. ... Lopez has yielded a team-high 15 homers in 72 innings. ... Orioles right-hander Daniel Cabrera will make a rehab start Wednesday night for Double-A Bowie. He has been on the DL since May 15 with a muscle strain in his right shoulder. ... Conine singled in the sixth to snap a 3-for-34 skid. ... Tampa Bay's Jonny Gomes, who entered in a 2-for-21 funk, went 2-for-4.