New­comer Beck­ham hits O’s 10,000th homer in come­back win

The Washington Post Sunday - - BASEBALL - BY AARON TOR­RES aaron.tor­res@wash­post.com

bal­ti­more — Tim Beck­ham stood in the Bal­ti­more Ori­oles’ dugout, buoyed by the roar of fans at Cam­den Yards on Satur­day night. Af­ter Beck­ham’s 15th home run of the sea­son, in the eighth in­ning of Bal­ti­more’s 5-2 win over the Detroit Tigers, the 33,911 fans stood cheer­ing, ask­ing for a cur­tain call from the new­est Ori­ole. He emerged mo­ments later, both hands in the air, and the crowd erupted.

A week ago, Beck­ham was with the Tampa Bay Rays, be­fore he was traded to Bal­ti­more at the trade dead­line Mon­day. And now he is on a tear. He has mul­ti­ple hits in each of his first five games with the Ori­oles and has home­red in the last three. Of the 13 hits he has ac­cu­mu­lated since the trade, seven of them have been for ex­tra bases. And on Satur­day he even earned a small place in Ori­oles his­tory be­cause the solo blast in the eighth in­ning was the 10,000th homer in fran­chise his­tory.

“It’s a great feel­ing, just to come in and help the club win a cou­ple of ball­games and be a part of the Ori­oles or­ga­ni­za­tion,” said Beck­ham, who is bat­ting .650 for Bal­ti­more.

Af­ter a month of de­cid­ing whether to buy or sell at the trade dead­line, the Ori­oles didn’t trade away Zach Brit­ton or Brad Brach. In­stead, they ac­quired Beck­ham, the No. 1 over­all pick in the 2008 draft. Beck­ham strug­gled to be­come the im­pact player in Tampa Bay that his draft slot might sug­gest, but he may well help the Ori­oles as they con­tinue to push for a spot in the Amer­i­can League wild-card race. The Ori­oles (54-56) moved to within three games of the sec­ond wild card with Satur­day’s win.

Bal­ti­more fell be­hind early, in dan­ger of los­ing its third straight against the Tigers fol­low­ing a five-game win­ning streak ear­lier in the week.

With a run­ner on first and one out in the top of the first, Bal­ti­more starter Wade Miley threw Justin Up­ton a knee-high slider on the lower-in­side cor­ner that Up­ton sent to the seats in left.

But af­ter the rough first in­ning, Miley pitched about as well as he did in his pre­vi­ous start — a win Sunday against the Texas Rangers. For the sec­ond con­sec­u­tive out­ing, he al­lowed two runs on four hits in five in­nings with five strike­outs.

“I was able to get in a lit­tle rhythm there in the third, fourth and fifth,” Miley said. “I was able to get ahead. That’s the big key. I was get­ting ahead of guys.”

As Miley held the Tigers score­less from the sec­ond through the fifth, the Ori­oles were able to tie the game against Detroit’s starter, Drew VerHa­gen.

In the third, Adam Jones dou­bled to the gap in left. One bat­ter later, Jonathan Schoop did the same to slice the Tigers’ lead in half. Schoop’s hit pro­duced his 80th RBI of the sea­son, ty­ing him with for­mer Ori­ole and cur­rent Seat­tle Mariners out­fielder Nel­son Cruz for the most RBI in the Amer­i­can League.

In the fifth, Jones sent a hang­ing curve­ball by VerHa­gen 391 feet to the left field bleach­ers. It was Jones’s 20th home run of the sea­son, giv­ing him seven straight sea­sons with at least that many.

VerHa­gen, mak­ing his sec­ond ca­reer start, was pulled af­ter five. It was up to the Tigers’ bullpen to hold the Ori­oles. It didn’t.

Wel­ing­ton Castillo hit the goa­head home run in the sev­enth in­ning. Then the Ori­oles added two more runs in the eighth, in­clud­ing one on Beck­ham’s lat­est homer.

“He’s the first over­all pick,” Miley said. “I’m pretty sure he’s sup­posed to be do­ing some stuff like that.”

EVAN HABEEB/USA TO­DAY SPORTS

“It’s a great feel­ing, just to come in and help the club win a cou­ple of ball­games,” said Tim Beck­ham, round­ing the bases on a homer.

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