Game 18: Roenicke can’t hold lead in loss to Orioles
FORT MYERS, Fla. — Infielder James Beresford and Ray Olmedo both homered in the eighth inning but Josh Roenicke blew the save by giving up five runs in the ninth to hand the Twins a 9-4 loss to the Orioles on Wednesday night at Hammond Stadium.
With the loss, the Twins fell to 10-8 in Grapefruit League play. They host the Red Sox in a day game at Hammond Stadium on Thursday.
What went right: In a rare display of power, Beresford and Olmedo both came up with long blasts off Orioles right-hander Todd Redmond.
Beresford, who started it off with a solo shot, has just one career homer in the Minor Leagues and it came in 2010 with Class A Beloit. And Olmedo followed with a two-run blast after Joe Benson, which was also rare considering Olmedo has just two career big league homers in 484 plate appearances.
Right-hander Kevin Correia turned in his best outing of the spring, as he gave up two runs (one earned) on four hits to his improve his ERA to 4.76 in four Grapefruit League starts.
Correia was also helped by a few great plays from the defense, as Chris Parmelee robbed a potential homer in right field with a leaping catch at the wall and Brian Dozier made several slick plays at second base.
Reliever Casey Fien had a nice outing, throwing 1 1/3 perfect innings in relief of Correia.
What went wrong: Roenicke struggled, as he only recorded two outs in the ninth inning and blew the lead by giving up five runs on three hits and two walks.
It wasn’t a good sign for Roenicke, who is battling for a spot in the bullpen after being selected off waivers from the Rockies. Roenicke, who is out of options, now has an 8.22 ERA this spring.
But left-hander Caleb Thielbar didn’t fare much better trying to clean up Roenicke’s mess, as he gave up two hits and a run and threw a wild pitch before getting Chris Robinson to pop out to end the inning.
But it wasn’t just the pitching, as outside of their big eighth inning, the Twins also didn’t do much offensively. They didn’t get a hit until Ryan Doumit singled to lead off the fifth inning.
Center fielder Aaron Hicks has also cooled off a bit, as he went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts, but is still hitting .342.
What they said: “We ambushed them and then they re-ambushed us. Is that a word? It should be. One of those Yogi-isms” — Twins manager Ron Gardenhire.
What’s next: Right-hander Mike Pelfrey is set to make his fourth start of the spring on Thursday against the Red Sox in a 1:05 p.m. ET start at Hammond Stadium. Pelfrey, who had Tommy John surgery on May 1, has a 3.52 ERA this spring. Right-hander Ryan Dempster is scheduled to start for the Red Sox.
Injury update: Right-hander Deolis Guerra (blood clot in right shoulder) was transferred to Tampa General Hospital, where he’ll have his first rib removed in the next few days to help give his artery more room.