BRADENTON -- A sloppy fourth inning has things going poorly for the Pirates against the Orioles at McKechnie Field.
After three scoreless innings, former Pittsburgh slugger Steve Pearce crushed a leadoff, solo home run to left field. And that was just the start. Baltimore brought all nine of its batters to the plate during a disastrous fourth inning for relief pitcher Jared Hughes and the Bucs to bust the game open before its midway point.
The O's started off with four straight hits by Pearce, Jimmy Paredes, Delmon Young and Chris Davis and were aided by some poor Pirate defense to push the second run across the plate. Paredes hit was a standard single up the middle, but Young's single was the result of a miscommunication between Jung-ho Kang and Pedro Alvarez. Neither infielder committed to the ball and it blooped in for a single in front of the two fielders. A third consecutive single brought Paredes in from second base.
A Ryan Lavarnway groundout brought Young open before Everth Cabreera and Ryan Flaherty singled to knock Hughes from the game and complete the Orioles' five-run frame.