Detroit Tigers closer Jose Valverde took the mound in the bottom of the ninth, looking to close out the game and cement a 5-3 victory. However, Baltimore’s offense had other plans on Friday night.
On the third pitch of the inning, Orioles right fielder Nick Markakis launched a solo home run to right field, pulling the Orioles within one run of Detroit.
Adam Jones and Chris Davis would follow with singles, leaving runners on the corners with no outs. Matt Wieters would pop out to first, followed by a a pop up to short by J.J. Hardy, leaving Baltimore down to their final out.
With two outs and a 2-1 count, Orioles designated hitter Chris Dickerson would blast a three-run homer to right field, scoring Jones and Davis en route to a walk-off victory, topping the Tigers by a score of 7-5.
Dickerson had not started since May 23, battling a sore wrist throughout much of the past week. In 20 games this season, Dickerson has produced solid numbers for the Orioles, posting a .313 batting average with four home runs and 11 RBI.
Valverde’s blown save was his second of the season and he gave up his first two home runs of the season. He would see his ERA jump from 0.75 to 3.55, although he has only worked 12.1 innings this season. In those innings of relief, Valverde has saved six games and posted an 11/4 strikeout to walk ratio.
Detroit starter Max Scherzer pitched a solid game, working eight innings and surrendering three runs, while striking out ten batters. Amongst the offensive support for the Tigers was a two-run home run by Miguel Cabrera in the first inning off of Baltimore starter Miguel Gonzalez. Cabrera now sits second in the American League with 16 home runs and first with 61 RBI, cementing his name amongst the best in the game as he typically does perennially.