Ortiz, relievers look sharp in overcoming E's and O's

  • Updated: March 15, 2007 - 9:47 PM

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Ramon Ortiz was an afterthought this winter in a whirlwind free-agent market, but the right-hander has been plenty reliable this spring for the Minnesota Twins.

Ortiz struck out four and gave up two unearned runs in four innings Thursday, pitching the Twins past the Baltimore Orioles 4-2.

Signed to a one-year, $3.1 million contract in late January, Ortiz has been solidifying his spot behind Cy Young Award winner Johan Santana in a rotation that is still unsettled.

His spring ERA is 0.75 after giving up three hits and one walk in Thursday's outing in front of a sellout crowd of 8,122 fans at Hammond Stadium.

"That's what I want to do every time. I want to throw the ball down," Ortiz said.

After two rough seasons in the NL, one with Cincinnati and one with Washington, Ortiz has been happy to be back in a league he's familiar with. He has repeatedly told reporters this spring how much he enjoys his new team — and how much he loves baseball.

"I don't think about my position in the rotation," Ortiz said. "For me, it doesn't matter. Whether you're two or three or whatever, my day is when the manager gives me the ball. The more innings I pitch, the better I feel. You know what my best day is? My best day is when I get to throw the ball."

Said manager Ron Gardenhire: "We're trying not to put a number on them. We've got a ways to go. You can put a No. 1 on Santana. Nothing is a lock after Santana."

Ortiz beat the Twins in Game 2 of the 2002 AL Championship Series, but that's in the past for him.

"I don't want to think about beating Minnesota," Ortiz said. "I'm here now. I like this team, and I want to help this team get to the playoffs."

Orioles starter Adam Loewen is also having a solid spring. The 6-foot-5 left-hander, the fourth overall draft pick by Baltimore in 2002, struck out four in four innings while walking one and giving up two hits that included a solo homer by Michael Cuddyer.

"He looked excellent," Orioles pitching coach Leo Mazzone said of Loewen, who has a 2.25 spring ERA. "All of his starts have been good. He's pitching extremely well. He's ready to pitch in the big leagues."

A native Canadian who missed a large part of spring training last year to play in the World Baseball Classic, Loewen was confident he has progressed from last season — when he started at Double-A Bowie.

Loewen went 6-6 with a 5.37 ERA for Baltimore after being called to the big leagues for good after the All-Star break.

"I'm a lot further along than I was last year," Loewen said. "With the World Baseball Classic, I really didn't have a chance to make the team."

Former Twins infielder Terry Tiffee went 1-for-3 for the Orioles. Jay Payton went 1-for-3 with an RBI in a two-run first inning against Ortiz, when second baseman Tommy Watkins committed an error that allowed Aubrey Huff to score.

Garrett Jones hit a two-run double in the bottom of the eighth for Minnesota to break the tie. Watkins made up for his miscue by hitting a sacrifice fly that scored Jones in the second and starting a game-ending double play in the field in the ninth.

Notes: Ken Harvey, a long-shot designated hitter candidate for the Twins, had knee surgery Thursday and will be out four to six weeks.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions
Final123456789RHE
Detroit2200000004110
Minnesota «30000302X8130
@Ballpark Replay
Preview | Matchup | Lineup | Log | Wrap | Box
W:K.Gibson(12-11) L:D.Price(14-12)
HR: DET- None MIN- None

ADVERTISEMENT

Texas - WP: N. Martinez 7 FINAL
Oakland - LP: S. Gray 2
Boston - LP: B. Workman 2 FINAL
Pittsburgh - WP: G. Cole 3
Toronto - LP: A. Sanchez 2 FINAL
NY Yankees - WP: D. Robertson 3
Washington - WP: G. Gonzalez 6 FINAL
Miami - LP: B. Hand 2
Los Angeles - WP: P. Rodriguez 8 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - LP: N. Ramirez 4
Cleveland - WP: K. Crockett 2 FINAL
Houston - LP: S. Deduno 1
Milwaukee - LP: J. Nelson 2 FINAL
St. Louis - WP: S. Freeman 3
Arizona - LP: A. Reed 6 FINAL
Colorado - WP: L. Hawkins 7
Philadelphia - LP: K. Kendrick 3 FINAL
San Diego - WP: R. Erlin 7
Seattle - WP: T. Wilhelmsen 3 FINAL
LA Angels - LP: K. Jepsen 1
Tampa Bay 14 FINAL
Atlanta 56
San Diego 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Buffalo
Dallas 9/21/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
Washington 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Houston 9/21/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
Minnesota 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New Orleans
Tennessee 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Baltimore 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cleveland
Green Bay 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Detroit
Indianapolis 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Oakland 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New England
San Francisco 9/21/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Denver 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Seattle
Kansas City 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Miami
Pittsburgh 9/21/14 7:30 PM
Carolina
Chicago 9/22/14 7:30 PM
NY Jets
(5) Auburn 20 FINAL
(20) Kansas State 14
Connecticut 7:00 PM
So Florida
Old Dominion 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Rice
Troy 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(13) Georgia
Georgia Tech 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Virginia Tech
Eastern Mich 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(11) Michigan State
Iowa 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Pittsburgh
Bowling Green 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(19) Wisconsin
Maryland 9/20/14 11:30 AM
Syracuse
Tulane 9/20/14 11:30 AM
Duke
Hawaii 9/20/14 1:00 PM
Colorado
Marshall 9/20/14 1:00 PM
Akron
North Carolina 9/20/14 2:30 PM
East Carolina
Army 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Wake Forest
Virginia 9/20/14 2:30 PM
(21) BYU
(6) Texas A&M 9/20/14 2:30 PM
SMU
Rutgers 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Navy
Central Mich 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Kansas
Utah 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Michigan
Florida 9/20/14 2:30 PM
(3) Alabama
Louisville 9/20/14 2:30 PM
FIU
Fla Atlantic 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Wyoming
Indiana 9/20/14 3:00 PM
(18) Missouri
San Jose St 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Minnesota
Texas State 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Illinois
Massachusetts 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Penn State
Georgia State 9/20/14 5:00 PM
Washington
Appalachian St 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Southern Miss
Miss State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
(8) LSU
Northern Ill 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas
Middle Tennessee 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Memphis
Utah State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas State
Miami-Ohio 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Idaho 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Ohio U
Ball State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Toledo
(14) So Carolina 9/20/14 6:30 PM
Vanderbilt
(4) Oklahoma 9/20/14 6:30 PM
West Virginia
Ga Southern 9/20/14 6:30 PM
South Alabama
UNLV 9/20/14 7:00 PM
Houston
(22) Clemson 9/20/14 7:00 PM
(1) Florida State
Miami-Florida 9/20/14 7:00 PM
(24) Nebraska
New Mexico 9/20/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico St
California 9/20/14 9:00 PM
Arizona
Louisiana 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Boise State
(2) Oregon 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Washington St
San Diego St 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Oregon State
Texas Tech 9/25/14 6:30 PM
(25) Oklahoma State
Appalachian St 9/25/14 6:30 PM
Ga Southern
(12) UCLA 9/25/14 9:00 PM
(15) Arizona State
Toronto 9:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Edmonton 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Hamilton
Calgary 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Montreal
Ottawa 9/21/14 3:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Montreal 9/26/14 6:00 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 9/26/14 9:00 PM
Edmonton
Hamilton 9/27/14 5:30 PM
Winnipeg
Brt Columbia 9/27/14 8:30 PM
Calgary
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How sure are you that the Twins are on the road to improving?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close