PITTSBURGH (AP) — Chris Davis had been searching since spring training for the power stroke that produced 53 home runs last season.
It reappeared in a big way Tuesday night as Davis hit three home runs, doubling his season total, and drove in five runs to lead the Baltimore Orioles to a 9-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Tuesday night.
Davis hit a two-run blast during a four-run fifth inning off Francisco Liriano (0-4) that put the Orioles ahead 6-1. He hit a solo shot in the seventh off Jared Hughes and two-run homer in the ninth off Jeanmar Gomez.
It was Davis' second career three-homer game - the other came on Aug. 24, 2012 against Toronto - and seventh multi-homer game.
After leading the major leagues and setting a franchise record for homers last season, Davis hit three in his first 30 games.
Davis was on the disabled list with a strained left oblique from April 26-May 11, an injury that had sapped his power. His frustration reached a boiling point Sunday when he went 0-for-4 in a loss to the Royals at Kansas City.
"I felt like I just had some good pitches to hit and I rolled over everything, so I got here early today and worked on some stuff in early (batting practice)," said Davis, who also singled in the fourth inning. "It just sometimes clicks for you and today was one of those days."
"Even in spring training, there were some at-bats where I would feel good and have good results, but I just didn't feel like I was right and then obviously with the injury, missing some time coming back, my timing was all screwed up."
Nelson Cruz also homered, following Davis' shot in the fifth, to give the Orioles their second set of back-to-back homers of the season. Adam Jones had two hits to extend his hitting streak to 14 games.
Miguel Gonzalez (2-3) pitched six innings for Baltimore, allowing two runs and seven hits with seven strikeouts and no walks.
"It was a great night to be out there as a pitcher," Gonzalez said. "A lot of run support and a lot of great defense."