Monell hits 3-run homer to lead Orioles over Twins

Published on NewsOK Modified: March 5, 2014 at 9:54 pm •  Published: March 5, 2014
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FORT MYERS, Fla. (AP) — Johnny Monell hit a three-run homer to key a five-run third inning, leading the Baltimore Orioles to an 11-5 win over the Minnesota Twins on Wednesday night.

Monell, a 27-year-old journeyman catcher purchased from the San Francisco Giants this offseason, connected on a fastball from Twins setup man Jared Burton.

The Orioles also stole third base twice in the same inning off Burton, making his second appearance of the spring.

Baltimore scored five more runs in the sixth, when second-base prospect Jorge Polanco made a throwing error that led to four unearned runs off Twins left-hander Scott Diamond.

STARTING TIME

Orioles: Right-hander Chris Tillman, the likely opening-day starter, gave up four hits and three runs — one earned — in 2 1-3 innings but was encouraged by his outing.

"I've got no complaints," Tillman said. "Physically, it felt good. Mechanically, I felt good, too. I think pitch execution was good for the most part."

Twins: Right-hander Mike Pelfrey was surprised to learn he threw strikes on 66 percent of his 47 pitches in 2 1-3 innings.

"Really?" he said. "Well, there weren't enough quality strikes in there. I was all over the place."

Pelfrey took hard drive by Ryan Flaherty off the side of his right leg but stayed with the play to get the out. Pelfrey was disappointed with his "slow reactions" on that and one other ball hit back through the box.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Orioles: Outfielder David Lough was scratched from the lineup after being hit in the foot by a line drive on Wednesday morning in Sarasota. . Outfielder Henry Urrutia (sore right shoulder) has been cleared to play and is expected to return to the lineup on Thursday at home against Tampa Bay. . Infielder Alexi Casilla (hamstring) took batting practice and could return as soon as this weekend.

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