TORONTO (AP) - Brett Lawrie was trying to score a big run for the Toronto Blue Jays. He ended up doing Baltimore a big favor.
Lawrie was thrown out on an attempted steal of home, snuffing out a potential rally in the process, and the Orioles beat the Blue Jays 6-4 Saturday on Nolan Reimold's two-run homer in the ninth inning.
``I thought it was a point in the game where I could help my teammates out and it ended up working against me,' Lawrie said. ``I've got to learn from it and move to the next time.'
The second-year infielder broke for home with slugger Jose Bautista at the plate and the bases loaded in the second. Orioles starter Jason Hammel stepped off and fired a high throw to catcher Matt Wieters, who blocked the plate with his feet and tagged the sliding Lawrie for the third out.
``If we don't have a 6-foot-5 catcher, it may have worked,' Orioles manager Buck Showalter said.
Usually brash, a humbled Lawrie said he was trying to take advantage of Hammel working from the windup.
``I thought I could try and sneak one by him, but the timing was a little different,' Lawrie said. ``I guess he was in between signs and stepped off. A bit of bad luck.
``I never wanted to take the bat out of Jose's hands, especially in that situation with the bases loaded and one of the best hitters in the game up,' Lawrie added. ``I don't want to take the bat out of his hands but, at the same time, I'm still going to continue to be aggressive, just try to be a little smarter next time.'
Hammel called the play ``a big spot in the game.'
``I was surprised,' Hammel said. ``It was more of a `thank you.' With Bautista up there and the bases loaded, that's kind of a favor to me for him to try and steal home.'
Blue Jays manager John Farrell said Lawrie, who was later thrown out trying to steal second, was guilty of ``youthful exuberance.'
``We have to continue to educate the game situations,' Farrell said. ``When a pitcher is in a prolonged inning, when you're running up a pitch count, you don't want to give away an out on the basepaths, particularly early in the game when you've got a chance to put a crooked number on the board.'
Wilson Betemit hit a tying homer in the eighth inning and Chris Davis also went deep for the Orioles, who won their second straight game at Rogers Centre. Coming into the series, Baltimore was 5-29 in Toronto dating to 2008, and had not won a series north of the border since June of that year.
``Every question seems to be prefaced with how we've struggled here before,' Reimold said. ``It's good to come in here and have some close ballgames where we do the little things that you've got to do to get the win.'
Betemit's go-ahead, two-run single in the eighth inning Friday night rallied Baltimore to a 7-5 victory that snapped a three-game skid.
Kelly Johnson homered for the Blue Jays, but their bullpen blew another late lead. Toronto relievers have blown four saves this season and are responsible for three of the team's four defeats.
Betemit tied it at 4 with a solo shot to right off Casey Janssen in the eighth. Reimold hit a towering drive to left off Francisco Cordero (0-1), his second homer of the season and second ninth-inning shot in two days.
``The home run (Reimold) hit was a hit-and-run,' Showalter said. ``We're going to change that sign to hit-and-trot. He's been in a good spot.'
Luis Ayala (1-0) worked one scoreless inning for the win and Jim Johnson finished for his fourth save. Johnson has converted 12 consecutive save opportunities dating to Aug. 14, 2011.
Davis led off the ninth with a single that hit Cordero on the upper right thigh and was replaced by pinch-runner Ryan Flaherty. Roberto Andino struck out but Reimold followed with his homer, Baltimore's sixth in the past two games.
The Blue Jays took the lead with a run in the second, but could have had more. Eric Thames doubled, moved to third on Lawrie's single and scored on a base hit by Colby Rasmus, who was forced at second on J.P. Arencibia's grounder.
Yunel Escobar walked to load the bases and Kelly Johnson struck out, bringing up Bautista, who fell behind 0-2 before Lawrie made his ill-fated steal attempt.
Baltimore reclaimed the lead in the fourth on Davis' first homer of the season, a two-run shot to right that ended a streak of nine straight solo homers by Orioles batters.
Toronto answered in the sixth against reliever Matt Lindstrom. Adam Lind hit a one-out double and Edwin Encarnacion reached on Betemit's error at third base, putting runners at the corners for Thames, who tied it with a sacrifice fly. Lawrie walked and Rasmus followed with an RBI single, giving him his first multihit game of the season.
Janssen replaced Blue Jays starter Henderson Alvarez in the eighth but failed to hold the lead, allowing a two-out solo drive to right by Betemit, his first.
Hammel allowed two runs and six hits in five innings. Alvarez gave up three runs and six hits in seven innings.
NOTES: Toronto closer Sergio Santos (paternity leave) will rejoin the roster Sunday and LHP Aaron Laffey will be optioned to Triple-A Las Vegas. ... Showalter said Wieters will likely get his first day off this season in Sunday's series finale. Baltimore LHP Brian Matusz (0-1) faces Toronto RHP Kyle Drabek (1-0).
The Associated Press News Service
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