Baltimore Orioles slug four homers, improve to 4-0
BALTIMORE — Chris Davis, Manny Machado and the Baltimore Orioles showed Chris Archer exactly how much power they're packing this season.
The Orioles hit four solo homers off Tampa Bay's star pitcher and rolled to a 6-1 victory Friday night, improving to 4-0 for the first time since 2011.
Davis homered in the second inning and three of his teammates went deep in the fifth: Jonathan Schoop, Nolan Reimold and Machado.
"He's one of the best pitchers in the game, and we knew it was going to be a tough one," Machado said. "From the get-go, he was commanding his pitches. We just had to sit him out. He had one bad inning, and we took advantage."
Archer (0-2) allowed six runs and 10 hits over five innings. The Rays' opening day hurler is winless in eight starts since Aug. 31 at Baltimore.
"I made a few mistakes, and they definitely capitalized," Archer said. "Giving up four homers in a game is very, very rare for any pitcher, for me in particular, so I'm not going to dwell upon it too much. I just know that I need to execute better early in the count."
Matt Wieters had two RBIs and Davis scored three runs to help the Orioles build on their season-opening, three-game sweep of Minnesota. The best start in franchise history is 5-0 in 1970.
"We're just trying to get in the groove, trying to get a feel for everybody and a feel for the lineup, and I think we're settling in," Machado said.
Chris Tillman (1-0) gave up one run and four hits in five innings. He retired the last nine batters he faced.
Evan Longoria homered for the Rays, who have gone deep in a club-record 19 consecutive games. It's the longest streak in the majors since Seattle connected in 23 straight games in 2013.
But the Rays were limited to five hits, four of them singles.
Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash gave credit to Tillman, who got off to a rocky start before dominating.
"You could tell he was getting in a groove and just really quieted us down quite a bit," Cash said.
Longoria's first home run of 2016 staked Tampa Bay to a first-inning lead. It was his seventh career homer off Tillman, the most against any pitcher.
Davis tied it in the second with a shot to center, his second homer of the season and 800th career hit.
Wieters put the Orioles ahead with an RBI single in the fourth, and Baltimore pulled away with a four-run fifth. Schoop started the barrage with a drive to center on Archer's first pitch of the inning, and two outs later Reimold and Machado connected in succession.
Wieters made it 6-1 with a liner that struck Archer's glove and bounded away.
The Orioles played a second straight game without center fielder Adam Jones, who is experiencing soreness in his ribcage.
"Take another day and see how it feels," Jones said before the game.
Baltimore shortstop J.J. Hardy also sat out the game with "calf tightness," according to manager Buck Showalter.
To fill the hole, Machado moved from third base to shortstop and Ryan Flaherty stepped in at third for his first action of the season.
Rays: Cash intended to shuffle his lineup this series to prevent some of his starters from pulling muscles in the cold. "We're not looking to risk any additional injury because of the temperatures," he said.
Orioles: LHP Brian Matusz (ribcage) pitched a scoreless inning for Double-A Bowie against Akron and could come off the DL on Sunday.
Rays: Weather permitting, Drew Smyly (0-1) gets his second start of the season Saturday night. Snow is in the forecast.
Orioles: Right-hander Mike Wright is looking to make his 2016 debut Saturday. He went 3-5 in 12 games last season.