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Oriole Blunder Revives Rangers

May 23, 1999|From Associated Press

BALTIMORE — On a day when Mike Timlin threw plenty of poor pitches, his worst toss of the afternoon was one that didn't go to the plate.

After Timlin inexplicably threw wildly to third base on a potential double-play ball in the ninth inning, Juan Gonzalez hit a three-run home run Saturday to give the Texas Rangers an 8-7 victory over the Baltimore Orioles.

The Rangers trailed, 6-4, entering the ninth but scored four runs before the Orioles got an out.

Roberto Kelly led off with a double against Timlin (1-4) and Mark McLemore walked. Rusty Greer then hit a comebacker to Timlin, who passed up an easy 1-4-3 double play and threw wide of third baseman Cal Ripken, allowing Kelly to score.

"Bad decision. My first thought was to get the lead runner," Timlin said. "I blew it. I screwed up. I bet you guys are tired of writing that."

On Wednesday, Timlin gave up two ninth-inning runs in a 5-4 loss to the Angels. He has blown three of his last four save opportunities.

"It's to the point where I'm embarrassed," he said. "I'm better than that."

Ricky Bones replaced Timlin and gave up an opposite-field homer to right by Gonzalez, who was playing his second game after sitting out seven in a row because of a strained hamstring.

"I'm just looking for a pitch to hit hard," Gonzalez said. "I mean, a long fly ball ties the game with a guy on third base. But when the ball jumped out of the yard, it's great."

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