<
>

Eaton earns first victory in Baltimore as Orioles pound White Sox

BALTIMORE -- Adam Eaton had just been removed from the game, and the most of the 11,723 fans that witnessed his masterful pitching performance collectively rose from their seats and gave him a standing ovation.

Eaton usually heads to the clubhouse after his work on the mound is done. On Thursday night, the right-hander was having so much fun that he remained in the dugout until the final out of the Baltimore Orioles' 6-2 victory over the Chicago White Sox.

"It felt great," Eaton said of the ovation. "It's been a long time since I have had that."

Eaton took a four-hitter into the eighth inning to earn his first victory with Baltimore, and the Orioles roughed up Bartolo Colon to conclude Chicago's 5-4 road trip.

Eaton (1-2) allowed six hits, struck out nine and walked none in 7 1-3 innings. He left with runners at the corners in the eighth, and Jim Thome ended the shutout bid with a two-out, two-run single off Jim Johnson.

But that couldn't ruin Eaton's night.

"It's been a while since I've been part of an experience like that," he said. "It felt good to be out on the field shaking hands after a something like that."

Signed in March after being released by Philadelphia, Eaton had an 11.25 ERA in his first two starts with the Orioles and failed to last more than four innings.

But he was masterful against the White Sox, yielding only one extra-base hit -- an eighth-inning double by Alexei Ramirez. Eaton struck out Thome and Josh Fields three times apiece.

"He changed location, he changed speeds and he used both sides of the plate," Orioles manager Dave Trembley said. "That's what he did to everybody. He stayed away from the middle of the plate for the most part. And when he did, they didn't get it."

Chicago's Chris Getz said, "He has a little deception in his fastball. That's what kind of threw us off. He was around the plate and threw strikes. He kept us off balance."

Colon (1-1) gave up five runs, eight hits and two walks in three innings, his shortest start since July 23, 2007, against Oakland as a member of the Los Angeles Angels. Colon permitted 10 of 19 batters to reach base in his first loss since returning to the White Sox as a free agent during the offseason.

"He was not throwing strikes. The ball was not moving," White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said. "You got to throw strikes. Every time he put the ball in the middle of the plate, he got hit."

The Orioles took two of three from Chicago, their fourth series win in five tries. Baltimore was 0-4 in the finale of its previous four series, being outscored 53-12.

Eaton gave up a leadoff single in the first inning to Getz, who stole second. Eaton then struck out Fields, Carlos Quentin and Thome.

A throwing error by White Sox right fielder Jermaine Dye and an RBI single by Ty Wigginton gave Baltimore a 2-0 lead in the bottom half. The Orioles loaded the bases with one out in the second but failed to score.

In the third, however, Luke Scott hit a two-run double and scored on a single by Cesar Izturis to put Baltimore up 5-0. The Orioles added an unearned run in the fourth against D.J. Carrasco, whose throwing error preceded an RBI double by Nick Markakis.

That was more than enough offense for Eaton, whose 7 1-3 innings was the most by a Baltimore starter this season.

"I wasn't happy about the first two outings," he said. "Obviously, with the combined eight innings, that leaves a huge burden on our bullpen, and that's not something I want to do."

Game notes
Thome's two RBIs gave him 1,499 for his career. ... Wigginton hit a double in the third inning, his first extra-base hit in 52 at-bats this season. ... Dye's error was his first in 96 games. ... The White Sox tied a season high by striking out 10 times. ... Markakis extended his hitting streak to 10 games.