Guthrie guides O's to sweep of Phillies

Guthrie guides O's to sweep of Phillies

PHILADELPHIA -- PHILADELPHIA -- After a dramatic win Saturday, Orioles manager Dave Trembley was doling out high fives and somehow missed Jeremy Guthrie. So the Orioles' Sunday starter promised his manager he'd earn an extra handshake after the series finale.

He did.

Guthrie pitched seven brilliant innings, outdueling Cole Hamels in a 2-1 win and picking up his first victory since May 25 to cap an Orioles sweep of the Phillies. After giving up a homer to Greg Dobbs in the second, Guthrie did not allow a runner to reach second base.

"He told me [Saturday] he was going to pitch good,'' Trembley said. "Knowing how competitive he is, he knew every pitch was going to be important. He knew he'd have to be at his best -- and he was."

Guthrie said he wasn't boasting and wasn't making predictions. He just wanted a handshake.

"[Trembley] gave everybody a high five [Saturday], but he inadvertently skipped me,'' Guthrie said. "After the game, I just asked what I had to do to get a handshake. I told him I'd make sure I got my handshake today."

Guthrie had struggled on the road this season, with a 1-3 record and an 8.53 ERA. Asked a question that began by noting his issues on the road had been "well-documented," Guthrie laughed and said: "Yes, you have documented them very well."

"You make mistakes against this team, they make you pay,'' Guthrie said. "It was a good outing. But I felt very strong the last couple outings as well. Hopefully things are going in a good direction."

Early in Sunday's game, Trembley said he made a note on his scorecard after one pitch, thinking this was going to be a good one.

"He had late movement, down and in, the pitch had finish,'' Trembley said. "That's how he pitches -- aggressive and keeping the ball down."

The Orioles have won seven of eight games, and they're 16-12 since a four-game losing skid ended May 21. Even in that, they've been weirdly streaky -- a five-game winning streak, a five-game losing streak, and now seven wins in eight games. However, the O's believe something good is happening here.

"We've really battled,'' Guthrie said. "That's the type of baseball you need."

"I feel like we've improved,'' Trembley said. "There are a lot of things going on. We're getting contributions from everybody, our bench has contributed, our situational hitting has improved. We're getting key hits when it counts. We're playing with confidence and we're having a lot of fun. That's what happens when everybody plays as a team."

This marked just the second time this season Baltimore won a pitchers' duel, prevailing when it scored fewer than three runs. The other was May 23 at Washington.

The Orioles struck out 10 times against Hamels -- the most strikeouts by an opposing starter against Baltimore this season. But Brian Roberts -- who won Saturday's game with a two-run homer in the ninth -- delivered an RBI single to break a 1-1 tie in the eighth. Robert Andino led off with a double. Oscar Salazar pinch hit and drove a grounder to the right side, advancing Andino to third.

"The play of the game, for me,'' Roberts said. "To come off the bench against Hamels, with two strikes, and get the ball to right side and move the runner over, that was huge."

Roberts then delivered a single that gave the Orioles a 2-1 lead.

In the eighth, Baltimore may have been the beneficiary of good fortune. Jimmy Rollins grounded softly to first, and Ty Wigginton grabbed it and rushed to tag him. Rollins avoided the tag and dove in safely. But first-base umpire Larry Vanover called Rollins out -- not because he was ruled out of the baseline, but because Vanover felt Wigginton made the tag.

Phillies manager Charlie Manuel was ejected in the ensuing argument. Manuel might have felt worse after watching the next hitter, Shane Victorino, hit a double. But reliever Jim Johnson, who has allowed just one earned run in his last 14 1/3 innings, got Chase Utley to ground out to end the threat. George Sherrill finished it for his 15th save.

"It's a tremendous Father's Day -- and what a weekend,'' Trembley said. "I thought [Saturday] was one of the best games we've played all year, and to come back and play like this was really something. Hamels was lights-out, and he had all his pitches. But we found a way to get it done again."

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