CLEARWATER, Fla. – The Orioles’ splendid spring pitching continued Saturday afternoon, and the offense provided just enough firepower for a win.
Left-hander Brian Matusz threw four scoreless innings in a 1-0 Grapefruit League win over the Phillies at Bright House Field, allowing just three hits and striking out four with no walks.
“He threw the ball well,” Showalter said. “His tempo was up. He was throwing the ball downhill. That’s good.
“There was a lot of room for improvement from his last outing,” he added. “We’ll see. Each one is another step for him. It’s a good one for him.”
Right-hander Alfredo Simon followed with three shutout innings in relief, and Oscar Villarreal and Miguel Socolovich tossed scoreless eighth and ninth innings, respectively.
Orioles pitching has allowed just four runs in its past 37 innings.
“We’ve pitched decently in spring training,” Showalter said. “I don’t think anybody’s going to sit here and sign off on that. We’ve got a long road to go. There are so many factors down here that will fool you. You really need to take a step back and take a look at reality.”
The game’s only scoring came on first baseman Chris Davis’ solo homer to right field off Phillies pitcher Scott Elarton for the Orioles’ first home run of the spring.
“I felt like every place we've played, the wind has been blowing in,” Davis said. “Our park was a joke the first few days. And then we get here and it's supposed to be a good place to hit, and we look up and the wind's blowing in. The games I've been in, I've seen a lot of guys hit the ball hard, hit balls low, which is kind of what you want early in spring.”