Oh, and Wiggy went 1-for-4, Matusz pitched eight innings of five-hit, six-strikeout ball, and Corey Patterson, Brian Roberts, and Nick Markakis drove in runs in a four-run seventh inning. Orioles 4, Rangers 0.
Thursday, August 19, 2010
Ty Wigginton, 2009 Upper Deck O-Pee-Chee #443
Last night I suggested, somewhat tongue-in-cheek, that Albert Belle was some sort of terrible, hulking creature fueled by his own fury and the fear of mortals. If you watched tonight's Orioles game, you know that the real enforcer is Mister Ty Wigginton. In the top of the sixth inning, with neither team having yet scored, young pitcher Brian Matusz gave up a gapper to right-center field. As Nick Markakis came up with the ball, the hitter (Andres Blanco) tried to stretch it into a triple. Markakis hit his cutoff man, Brian Roberts, who fired a strike to Wigginton at third. It was a bang-bang play, but the hydrant-shaped infielder expertly blocked Blanco's headfirst slide with a well-placed knee. He plucked Roberts' high throw out of the air and slapped the tag down in time for the crucial out. Blanco's momentum caused his head to collide with Wiggy's elbow, adding injury to insult. He popped up from the bag and began jawing at Ty while his third-base coach tried to guide him toward the dugout. Wigginton went chest-to-chest with the Ranger second baseman, shouting back at him and pointing toward the visitor dugout, telling him that he was out and should grab some bench. The bullpens slowly emptied, but the altercation was diffused before it became a fracas. Blanco is a lucky man; if they had come to blows, he might have had to crawl back to the clubhouse afterward.