ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- The Baltimore Orioles keep winning under new manager Buck Showalter.
Jeremy Guthrie scattered two hits over six innings, Adam Jones hit a two-run triple and the Orioles beat the Tampa Bay Rays 5-0 Friday night.Luke Scott hit his 22nd homer this season, helping Baltimore improve to 9-2 under Showalter."It's not a coincidence that we've turned it around since Buck showed up," Guthrie said. "He hasn't done anything necessarily different to make us win games, but we know what he expects. No magic formula, but maybe a kind of a good shift for us in gears."Guthrie (7-11) struck out three and walked four in his third consecutive win. It was also his first victory (1-4) in seven career starts at Tropicana Field."I had to battle," Guthrie said. "I didn't have a great feel for any of my pitches. For the most part I made some important pitches at important places in the game."The Orioles took a 3-0 lead in the first when Jones drove in two with a triple and then scored on a double by Felix Pie."I know what games mean to them, but I also know what they mean to us and the future where we're trying to head," Showalter said. "We're playing good baseball and it's showing up on the scoreboard."Baltimore has hit .302 and scored 54 runs since Showalter took over as manager on August 3.Koji Uehara gave up one hit in two scoreless innings before Michael Gonzalez pitched the ninth to complete a three-hitter. It was the Orioles second shutout this year, with the other coming in a 2-0 win at Minnesota on May 6.James Shields (10-11) allowed four runs and 10 hits over five-plus innings for the Rays, who have lost seven of nine. The right-hander was coming off a 17-11 loss last Saturday to Toronto in which he gave up six homers in four innings."They've always had a pretty good lineup," Shields said. "We know we can't take them lightly."Josh Bell made it 4-0 with a fourth-inning RBI single. Scott then extended the Orioles' advantage to 5-0 on a homer off Lance Cormier in the seventh. Scott has 10 homers and 23 RBIs over his last 24 games.Guthrie got defensive help during the first when right fielder Nick Markakis ran into the wall while making a catch on Evan Longoria's long foul with two on and one out. The next batter, Matt Joyce, ended the inning with an infield pop fly.The Rays failed to convert on seven opportunities with runners in scoring position and are 4 for 42 over the past four games."We have to keep working through it," Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon said. "I believe in our guys. It's just one of those moments that are very difficult."
Scott has five homers against Tampa Bay this year. ... As part of a promotion, the Rays wore 1970s era uniforms of the minor league Tampa Bay Tarpons, while Baltimore featured the all orange threads the team used twice in 1971. Showalter was not a big fan of the Orioles' uniform and wore a jacket in the dome stadium. "Someone said it looked like Halloween candy corn," Showalter said. "Take a picture. You won't see them again." ... Rays 1B Carlos Pena (sore right foot) could return Monday. ... The Orioles have been outscored 87-41 in the first this season. ... Tampa Bay RHPs Jeff Niemann and Wade Davis, both out with a strained right shoulder, remain on target to rejoin the rotation within the next two weeks.