ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Adam Jones keyed a seventh-inning rally with a two-run, go-ahead double and Chris Davis followed with a three-run homer Tuesday to help the Baltimore Orioles open the season with a 7-4 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays.
Matt Wieters homered early off AL Cy Young Award winner David Price. Wieters later drew an intentional walk from reliever Jake McGee (0-1) before Davis’ towering shot over the right-field wall broke open the game and silenced a sellout crowd of 34,078 at Tropicana Field.
Jason Hammel (1-0) allowed three runs and three hits in six innings. Jim Johnson pitched a scoreless ninth for a save.
Despite giving up a two-run homer to Wieters in the first inning and not being particularly sharp in his second career opening-day start, Price departed with a 3-2 lead after the Rays scored twice in the sixth.
Ben Zobrist hit a solo homer for Tampa Bay in the fourth, then put his team ahead with a sacrifice fly in the sixth. Desmond Jennings drove in the Rays’ other run with a sixth-inning double.
Orioles manager Buck Showalter turned the game over to his bullpen after the five-run seventh. Darren O’Day allowed an unearned run in the eighth before Johnson, last year’s major leagues saves leader, finished the combined six-hitter.
Both teams enter the season with expectations of contending for the AL East title. The Rays have won at least 90 games four of the past five years, while the Orioles stopped a stretch of 14 consecutive losing seasons by winning 93 games and making the playoffs a year ago, when they finished second in the division behind the New York Yankees.
Price is the leader of a deep rotation that kept Tampa Bay in the race despite offensive deficiencies in 2012. The 27-year-old left-hander became the first Ray to win 20 games, going 12-1 with a 2.26 ERA over his last 18 starts to edge Detroit’s Justin Verlander by four points in the Cy Young balloting.
The Orioles hopped on the Rays ace early. Jones doubled with two outs in the first, then scored on the second opening-day homer of Wieters’ career. Baltimore’s two-time All-Star catcher also homered in an opening-day loss to Tampa Bay at Tropicana Field three years ago.
Indians 4, Blue Jays 1
TORONTO — NL Cy Young winner R.A. Dickey and the overhauled Toronto Blue Jays struggled in their opener and lost to Asdrubal Cabrera, Justin Masterson and the Cleveland Indians 4-1 Tuesday night.
Cabrera hit a two-run homer off Dickey, Masterson pitched six innings and the Indians ended their streak of opening day losses at four.
Cleveland won its opener for the first time since beating the Chicago White Sox in 2008. The Indians had dropped eight of their last 10 openers.
Excited by the winter acquisitions of Dickey, Jose Reyes and other All-Stars, fans in Toronto were eager to see the revamped roster in action.
Instead, a disappointed sellout crowd of 48,857 saw Masterson and three relievers combine to hold Toronto to just one hit after newcomer Melky Cabrera’s leadoff single in the third, a two-out double in the ninth by catcher J.P. Arencibia. Colby Rasmus followed by striking out to end the game.
Masterson (1-0) allowed one run and three hits in six innings, ending his night by retiring 11 straight batters.