BALTIMORE — Manny Machado and Chris Davis hit first-inning homers, Ubaldo Jimenez had a season-high nine strikeouts over seven sharp innings and the Orioles celebrated their return to Baltimore with a 5-2 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday night.
Adam Jones also homered for the Orioles, who had lost five of six to fall into last place in the AL East.
Because of rioting and violence in the city, the Orioles last played in front of their home fans on April 26. Enjoying the comfort of familiar surroundings and fueled by a spirited crowd of 20,468, Baltimore took a quick 3-0 lead and cruised to the finish behind Jimenez (3-2).
Ezequiel Carrera had two doubles and two RBIs for the Blue Jays, who fell to 5-2 against Baltimore this season.
In their previous game at Camden Yards, the Orioles won on April 29 behind closed doors, a decision made for fan safety. Although the atmosphere in the city remains tense, the fans appeared delighted to turn their attention toward baseball.
Wearing “Baltimore” on their home white jerseys instead of the customary “Orioles,” the home team provided many a feel-good moment.
Jimenez gave up two runs, six hits and two walks. His three wins are one more than he had all last season.
Darren O’Day worked the eighth and Zach Britton got three outs for his seventh save.
After Jimenez struck out the side in the first inning, Machado led off the bottom half with an opposite-field drive to right off Marco Estrada (1-2). Then, after Delmon Young drew a two-out walk, Davis hit his team-leading eighth homer.
Jimenez struck out the side again in the fourth but gave up successive doubles to Kevin Pillar and Carrera in the fifth.
The Orioles used a sacrifice fly by Caleb Joseph to make it 4-1 in the sixth.
Carrera doubled in a run in the seventh, and Jones connected off Steve Delabar in the bottom half.
This was the beginning of a stretch in which the Orioles will play 17 of 20 games at home.
“It’s nice to get back here and kind of settle down and get into a nice rhythm, starting tonight,” Britton said before the game. “That’s kind of what we need now, to kind of re-set a little bit.”
Blue Jays: Manager John Gibbons sat OF-DH Jose Bautista Monday, citing both the slugger’s strained shoulder and bad numbers against Jimenez. Bautista came up as a pinch hitter in the ninth and ended the game with a groundout. . IF Jose Reyes (cracked rib) is expected to take batting practice on Wednesday. He has been on the DL since April 28.
Orioles: 2B Ryan Flaherty left in the third inning with an injury. He was activated Friday from the DL (strained groin). … 2B Jonathan Schoop (right knee sprain) could start baseball activities this week. … RHP Kevin Gausman (right shoulder tendinitis) will have an MRI on Tuesday “just to make sure we know what we’re dealing with,” manager Buck Showalter said.
Blue Jays: Mark Buehrle makes his third start of the season against the Orioles, looking for his third win against them.
Orioles: Right-hander Chris Tillman starts for the Orioles. He’s 0-2 against Toronto and has lost three straight decisions overall.
David Ginsburg, The Associated Press
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