Chris Davis had been scuffling, and with lefty Chris Sale on the mound, it was a perfect night for the Orioles first baseman to ride the pine. He didn't get the entire night off, however. Manager Buck Showalter called his number in the bottom of the ninth, and Davis delivered a walk-off three-run homer:
Davis has had a tough time following up last year's 53-homer campaign. He hit just two homers in 22 April games before going on the disabled list for an oblique strain. Then, of the five dingers he hit in May, three came in one game. Though he hit five homers in June prior to Monday, he was in a 4-for-36 tailspin, and hitting just .187/.274/.413 for the month.
The Orioles soldiered on gamely without him, with Adam Jones hitting a two-run homer off Sale in the first inning, but Jose Abreu drove in three runs against starter Wei-Yin Chen and reliever Ryan Webb via a third-inning groundout, a sixth-inning solo homer (his 22nd) and a seventh-inning RBI double, running the score to 4-2. Caleb Joseph trimmed the margin to 4-3 with a solo homer off Zach Putnam in the eighth. Ronald Belisario came on to close out the game, but allowed a single to Steven Pearce and then hit Jones with a pitch. He struck out Nelson Cruz, and then Showalter sent Davis to pinch-hit for Delmon Young.
On the seventh pitch of the at-bat, Belisario hung a slider, and Davis turned it into a souvenir for the Camden Yards faithful.
The win pushed the Orioles (40-35) ahead of the Yankees into second place in the AL East, 2 1/2 games behind the Blue Jays. The loss dropped the White Sox (35-42) further into last place in the AL Central, 7 1/2 games behind the Tigers.