October 2, 1997 in Sports

Randy Rocked, Orioles Roll Game 1 Orioles 9, Mariners 3 Baltimore Rides Mussina Past Mariners Johnson Remains No Big Mystery For Orioles

Jim Cour Associated Press
 

The Baltimore Orioles proved their regular-season mastery over Randy Johnson was the real deal. This time, it was a big defeat for the Big Unit.

If they can beat Seattle’s ace so easily, as Mike Mussina and his teammates did Wednesday night, the Mariners are in serious jeopardy.

The Orioles, wire-to-wire champions of the A.L. East, took advantage of Johnson’s wildness to beat the 20-game winner 9-3 Wednesday night in the opener of their division series.

“I don’t know, maybe I’ve got a phobia or something about the Orioles,” Johnson said.

“Tell all the Baltimore Orioles to go and put on another jersey,” he said.

Johnson lost for only the fifth time this season, three of them to Baltimore. Facing a lineup stacked with righties - Rafael Palmeiro, Roberto Alomar and B.J. Surhoff started on the bench - he fell to 3-8 overall against the Orioles.

“His control was off today,” manager Lou Piniella said. “He was behind on the count to quite a few hitters. Randy wasn’t sharp. It was just one of those days.

“They handle the bat well and they can put the ball in play,” he said. “They really didn’t have any big strikeout hitters in their lineup tonight.”

A crowd of 59,579, the largest to watch baseball at the Kingdome, saw Johnson’s playoff flop last 100 pitches. In five innings, he gave up five runs on seven hits and four walks, with only three strikeouts.

The Mariners have to be wondering if the Orioles have their number, too. Cal Ripken, who finished the season in a 6-for-36 slump, had three hits as Baltimore improved to 8-4 against Seattle this year.

“My guys hit some good pitches and they laid off some pretty good pitches,” Davey Johnson said. “I’ve seen Randy throw very good, but he hasn’t thrown that good against us.”

The Orioles know Randy Johnson pitches with a lot of pressure on him.

“People expect him to strike out 15 batters every time he goes out there,” Mussina said.

Piniella said he planned to bring Johnson back on three days’ rest Sunday and put rookie Ken Cloude, Sunday’s projected starter, in the bullpen if Game 4 is necessary in Baltimore.

Davey Johnson said he would bring Mussina back to pitch Sunday, too.

Mussina improved his career record against the Mariners to 9-1 by beating Seattle the second time this season.

Mussina, a 15-game winner this season, allowed five hits, including home runs by Edgar Martinez and Jay Buhner, in seven innings. He struck out nine and walked none in winning his first postseason game.

Jesse Orosco and Armando Benitez finished the combined seven-hitter. Ken Griffey Jr. went 0-for-4 for Seattle, and Alex Rodriguez homered in the ninth.

Geronimo Berroa and Chris Hoiles even stole some of Seattle’s thunder by hitting home runs. The Mariners broke the Orioles’ major league home run record with 264 this year.

Today, the Mariners will attempt to salvage a split at home. Seattle sends 17-game winner Jamie Moyer against Scott Erickson, who won 16 this season and was 2-0 against Seattle.

The Orioles, with the best road record in the AL, broke a 1-1 tie with four runs in the fifth, ending Johnson’s ill-fated night.

Johnson began the fifth by walking Jeffrey Hammonds, who stole second and went to third on first baseman Paul Sorrento’s throwing error, and Mike Bordick.

Brady Anderson followed with an RBI single, Jeff Reboulet sacrificed and Eric Davis bounced a single over drawn-in third baseman Mike Blowers for a 4-1 lead. After Davis was caught stealing, Berroa homered.

In the sixth, the Orioles turned the game into a rout with four runs off Mike Timlin, acquired on July 31 from Toronto to help Seattle’s bullpen. Timlin helped the Orioles instead.

Hoiles led off with a home run and Palmeiro followed with a double. Bordick hit an RBI single and Surhoff delivered a pinch-double that scored two more runs.

Bordick had an RBI double in the third for a 1-0 lead. Martinez tied it with a homer in the fourth. Buhner homered in the seventh.

Other than the home runs, Seattle’s hardest hit may have come when Joey Cora struck Orioles catcher Chris Hoiles with his backswing in the sixth. Hoiles had to leave the game with a bloody cut on his head, but no stitches were required.

Notes

Baltimore is the only AL team with a winning record against Johnson. … Johnson lost for the first time in a division series. He beat the New York Yankees twice in 1995. … Anderson, the only lefthander to start against Johnson, had two hits. … Martinez and Buhner each hit their fourth career homers against Mussina.

Orioles 9, Mariners 3

Baltimore AB R H BI BB SO Avg. ByAnderson cf 5 1 2 1 0 0 .400 Reboulet 2b 2 0 0 0 0 1 .000 a-RAlomar ph-2b 1 1 0 0 1 0 .000 EDavis rf 3 0 1 2 0 2 .333 b-Surhoff ph-lf 2 0 1 2 0 0 .500 Berroa dh 5 1 1 1 0 0 .200 CRipken 3b 5 0 3 0 0 0 .600 Hoiles c 2 1 1 1 1 0 .500 Webster c 2 0 1 0 0 0 .500 Walton 1b 2 0 0 0 0 0 .000 RPalmeiro 1b 2 1 1 0 0 0 .500 Hammonds lf-rf 2 2 0 0 2 1 .000 Bordick ss 3 2 2 2 1 1 .667 Totals 36 9 13 9 5 5

Seattle AB R H BI BB SO Avg. Cora 2b 4 0 1 0 0 0 .250 RKelly lf 4 0 1 0 0 1 .250 Griffey Jr cf 4 0 0 0 0 1 .000 EMartinez dh 4 1 1 1 0 0 .250 ARodriguez ss 4 1 2 1 0 2 .500 Buhner rf 3 1 1 1 1 2 .333 Sorrento 1b 4 0 1 0 0 2 .250 DaWilson c 3 0 0 0 0 1 .000 Blowers 3b 2 0 0 0 0 2 .000 c-Gates ph-3b 1 0 0 0 0 0 .000 Totals 33 3 7 3 1 11

Baltimore 001 044 000 9 Seattle 000 100 101 3

a-was intentionally walked for Reboulet in the 6th. b-doubled for Davis in the 6th. c-popped out for Blowers in the 8th.

E-Sorrento (1). LOB-Baltimore 6, Seattle 4. 2B-Surhoff (1), RPalmeiro (1), Bordick (1), RKelly (1), Sorrento (1). HR- ARodriguez (1) off ABenitez; Buhner (1) off Mussina; Hoiles (1) off Timlin; Berroa (1) off RaJohnson; EMartinez (1) off Mussina. RBIs-ByAnderson (1), EDavis 2 (2), Surhoff 2 (2), Berroa (1), Hoiles (1), Bordick 2 (2), EMartinez (1), ARodriguez (1), Buhner (1). SB-ByAnderson (1), Hammonds (1). CS-EDavis (1). S-Reboulet. GIDP-Hoiles, Walton, RKelly.

Runners left in scoring position-Baltimore 3 (EDavis 2, Berroa); Seattle 2 (EMartinez, DaWilson).

Runners moved up-ByAnderson.

DP-Baltimore 1 (Bordick and RPalmeiro); Seattle 2 (ARodriguez and Sorrento), (Blowers, Cora and Sorrento).

Baltimore IP H R ER BB SO NP ERA Mussina W,1-0 7 5 2 2 0 9 93 2.57 Orosco 1 1 0 0 0 0 8 0.00 ABenitez 1 1 1 1 1 2 20 9.00

Seattle IP H R ER BB SO NP ERA RaJohnson L,0-1 5 7 5 5 4 3 100 9.00 Timlin 2/3 3 4 4 1 1 22 54.00 Spoljaric 1/3 1 0 0 0 0 13 0.00 BWells 1-1/3 1 0 0 0 1 21 0.00 Charlton 1-2/3 1 0 0 0 0 21 0.00

Inherited runners-scored-Spoljaric 2-2.

IBB-off Timlin (RAlomar) 1.

T-3:14. A-59,579 (59,084).

MEMO: Changed in Spokane edition.

Changed in Spokane edition.


Thoughts and opinions on this story? Click here to comment >>

Get stories like this in a free daily email