BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) -Zach Duke found a silver lining in his rough start Wednesday night.
Duke settled down after allowing three runs in the first and pitched 2 2-3 innings in the Pittsburgh Pirates' 3-2 loss to the Baltimore Orioles.
``My stuff was definitely good,' he said ``But I was falling behind with my sinker, and I need that pitch to be effective. That's what cost me.'
The left-hander struck out his first two batters, before struggling to get out of the inning. Luke Scott had a two-run single and Ty Wigginton also singled in a run for the Orioles.
Duke's spring ERA through three starts is 7.71.
Brad Bergesen yielded two runs and three hits over 1 1-3 innings in his first start for the Orioles. The right-hander was slowed at the start of spring training after hurting his shoulder while filming a promotional spot in December, and his rookie season was cut short last year after being hit in the shin by a line drive.
``It was my first time facing live hitters since July 30, so that part was great,' Bergesen said. ``From just a pitching standpoint, I worked behind too many guys. That's to be expected at this point and hope to get better and better in each outing.'
Jason Berken and Mark Hendrickson each pitched two scoreless innings for the Orioles.
Daniel McCutchen, vying for the No. 5 spot in Pittsburgh's rotation, struck out two in two perfect innings.
``He was sharp,' Pirates manager John Russell said. ``He's a command-type guy, and I think each outing he's going to do better. He was on.'
NOTES: Baltimore 2B Brian Roberts, who has yet to play this spring due to a back injury, reported feeling better. Roberts came down with a virus Monday night after being given medication for his back. ... It was Pittsburgh?s only night game of the spring at McKechnie Field.
The Associated Press News Service
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