O is for offense as Birds bash Jays

O is for offense as Birds bash Jays

BALTIMORE -- First there was the vote of confidence, and then came the 13-run referendum.

Baltimore manager Dave Trembley learned that the Orioles would pick up the 2010 option in his contract Friday afternoon, and then he watched as his batting order mauled the Blue Jays en route to a 13-7 victory. It was all a cause for celebration for Trembley, whose job status had been bandied about for weeks on end.

"It's been tough. I tried not to show it, and I know I have sometimes," said Trembley, one of the league's most gregarious and media-friendly managers. "I know I've come across as a little short with some people, somewhat disgusted. But today for me was a day that reinforces, on a personal level, all the things I believed in all along -- loyalty, work hard, don't put yourself in front of anybody else, do things right and don't make excuses."

Trembley, who had been on the ropes for much of the past two weeks with his team plummeting in the standings, met the media before the game to discuss his glee at coming back for another season. And his merriment only grew as the night wore on, thanks to a full-scale offensive attack led by first baseman Michael Aubrey.

Aubrey hit two home runs -- one a two-run job to make it a five-run game and the latter a grand slam to put the game away -- in Baltimore's one-sided rout. The Orioles (62-98) managed to score in five of the first six innings, and Matt Wieters put them ahead for good with a three-run homer in the fourth.

But it was Aubrey, who doubled his season output in home runs, who stood out as the offensive hero. The former first-round Draft pick could appreciate the timing of his heroics, especially in relation to Trembley.

"I think guys were excited," Aubrey said. "It's good to know what you are going to be dealing with in the future. Having uncertainty leaves everyone tip-toeing around. But now everyone knows, everyone is comfortable with the way things have been run [and] handled. I think it is going to be a positive for the rest of the season."

And for Trembley, the win helped exorcise some old demons. The last time that he had learned of a contract extension, the Orioles had gone out and dropped a 30-3 decision to the Rangers. Baltimore wound up going 11-28 down the stretch that year, and Trembley was reminded of that outcome twice on Friday.

The first reminder came in his meeting with president Andy MacPhail, and the other came in his postgame media briefing.

"When I was up in Andy's office, that topic was brought up," said Trembley. "'Make sure you don't repeat that performance tonight, Mr. Trembley.' But it wasn't said so gingerly by Andy. ... And we got it done."

Baltimore starter Jason Berken faced the minimum amount of batters in the first three innings before stumbling in the fourth. Edwin Encarnacion reached Berken (6-12) for a three-run homer, and Randy Ruiz tied the game with a solo shot. Wieters answered immediately, though, and Toronto (75-85) didn't score again until the ninth.

Aubrey set a career high with six RBIs in his first multihomer game, and Brian Roberts set a new career high for runs scored (108). Baltimore scored seven runs off Toronto starter David Purcey, who had held it to one run 10 days ago. Purcey (1-3) was knocked out after Wieters hit his game-changing homer in the fourth.

The Orioles can avoid their first 100-loss season in two decades with a victory in one of their final two games, and they've now put together back-to-back victories for the first time since Sept. 15-16. Baltimore snapped a 13-game losing streak on Thursday and will hope to continue its modest momentum.

"Everybody knows about the 100 losses," said Berken. "You just want to go out there and end the season on a good note. Obviously, losing 13 in a row is tough. ... Everybody wants to go in the offseason on a positive note."

Toronto put together a late charge with three runs in the ninth inning off former closer Chris Ray, and Alberto Castillo was able to halt the rally before it got out of control. Trembley was able to get out of Camden Yards with his positive moment intact, and he said that he knows he'll have to manage differently next season.

"I know very clearly after talking to him up there what the parameters are now," he said of MacPhail. "The parameters are that we have to do a better job of winning baseball games going forward. The stage of developing players and being patient and putting your arm around them and all that, coddling them, that's fine, but that's been adequately conveyed to me that I'm now judged on winning according to the level of talent we have here."

Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.