St. Petersburg, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - Chris Davis smacked a grand slam to highlight a five-run third inning and the Baltimore Orioles defeated the Tampa Bay Rays, 7-5, in the middle test of a three-game set.
Steve Pearce belted a two-run shot and scored two runs, while Miguel Gonzalez (4-4) allowed four runs on eight hits and two walks over five frames for the Orioles, who had dropped three of their last four games coming in.
"I'm getting to the plate pretty often, so it's a lot easier to hit when you're playing," Pearce said of reaching a new career high with five homers.
Zach Britton fired a scoreless ninth to notch his eighth save of the year.
Sean Rodriguez and Desmond Jennings cracked back-to-back homers in the third for Tampa Bay, which had won four of its last five tilts. Erik Bedard (3-5) surrendered five runs on four hits and two walks over four-plus innings to absorb the loss.
"In spite of the loss today, there's a lot of good things that did occur," Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "We were right in that ballgame."
The O's jumped ahead with their five-run third.
Jonathan Schoop singled to begin the frame, Nick Markakis hit a one-out single and Pearce walked to load the bases. A wild pitch during Adam Jones' at-bat allowed Schoop to score before Jones was hit by a pitch.
Davis then sliced a towering fly ball down the left-field line. David DeJesus appeared to be on the verge of tracking it down, but he ran into the wall and Davis stood at second with an apparent double. But the call was overturned following a review after replays showed that the ball hit the foul pole.
The Rays cut into the gap with two runs in the home third and two more in fifth.
Rodriguez and Jennings led off the third with back-to-back solo shots to left. In the fifth, Matt Joyce hit a one-out double, Evan Longoria singled and both scored when James Loney whacked a double into the left-field corner to trim the deficit to 5-4.
Baltimore, however, tacked on a pair of runs in the seventh after Caleb Joseph doubled to start the frame and Pearce launched his two-run blast to left two batters later to stake the O's to a 7-4 cushion.
Yunel Escobar's sacrifice fly in the eighth trimmed the margin to 7-5.
Baltimore was 2-for-7 with runners in scoring position, while Tampa Bay finished 3-for-10 ... Davis' homer was his 12th of the season.