Roberts' homer lifts O's past Phils

Roberts' homer lifts O's past Phils

PHILADELPHIA -- Brian Roberts was sitting in the dugout Saturday, thinking it just wouldn't be right to see Brad Bergesen lose this game, that Danys Baez didn't deserve to be hung with this loss, and that the Orioles had done too much to see this one slip away.

So, Roberts went out and won it for the O's with a two-out, two-run homer to right in the ninth inning off Ryan Madson that brought the Orioles back from the brink and gave them an improbable 6-5 win over the Philles.

The Orioles squandered several chances to break Saturday's game open and saw a five-run Phillies seventh take their lead away, but the O's hung in there for their second ninth-inning win in three days.

"This was big for our team," said Roberts, who had a season-high four RBIs and homered for the first time since May 21. "To come in here in an environment like this and show some resiliency and bounce back like we did is big for us.

"We have a good team. I think people are starting to see that a little bit. Bergie pitched so well, and Danys has pitched so well for us, it would have been a shame to lose this one. We believe in ourselves. We believe we have a good team."

That belief may have seemed hard to come by after eight innings, as the Orioles left a season-high 14 runners on base and had scored just three runs despite 13 hits and 18 baserunners. Baltimore was 2-for-13 with runners in scoring position, and neither hit scored a run. A slim 3-0 lead was washed away when Bergesen, who was brilliant through six innings, faltered in the seventh.

"I left a couple balls up," Bergesen said. "Third time through the lineup, they'd seen me a couple times, and they got me.

"With that momentum shift, 45,000 fans screaming, for us to come back like that in the ninth was unbelievable."

The Phillies chased Bergesen with four hits in a span of five batters. That brought on Baez, who got one out before Ryan Howard came off the bench to pinch-hit with runners on first and third. The slugger promptly smacked a home run to give the Phillies a 5-3 lead.

Orioles manager Dave Trembley had first baseman Aubrey Huff playing behind the runner at first, daring the Phillies to try to steal. If they had, Trembley was set to walk Howard intentionally. As it was, the Orioles were prepared to walk him unintentionally.

"We didn't want to throw him a strike," Trembley said. "It wasn't going to be an intentional walk with a runner on first, but we really didn't want to throw him a good pitch. We made a bad pitch, and he made us pay for it. But it turned out OK."

It did in the ninth when Gregg Zaun hit a one-out homer to right to make it 5-4. Then Oscar Salazar delivered a pinch-hit single, and a ripple went through the Orioles dugout.

"When [Zaun] hit the home run, everybody felt like we'd gotten a second life," Trembley said. "When Salazar got the hit, we felt like we were going to win. That was echoed on the bench rather vigorously."

Felix Pie pinch-ran -- which may have been a bigger factor than you'd think, Trembley said.

"I think he distracted Madson a little bit -- he kept throwing over, and throwing over," Trembley said. "You need little things like that."

Then Roberts drilled a fastball into the seats in right, and the Orioles had the lead again. George Sherill finished it off for his 14th save.

"This is one to enjoy," Trembley said. "This game showed something about fighting back. It doesn't happen if you don't believe, and we believe.

"We're playing hard, and we're starting to feel like we're never going to be out of it. It takes a lot of work a lot of contributions from everybody on the club -- and we got that tonight."

Kevin Roberts is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.