Fox on the run in 12th inning heroics

BALTIMORE -- Orioles backup catcher Jake Fox is not used to pinch-running, but that was exactly what he was asked to do on Thursday against Seattle.

With the Orioles trailing by a run in the 12th inning, Fox replaced Vladimir Guerrero on second base with shortstop J.J. Hardy at the plate and the bases loaded. Hardy hit a ball up the middle and Fox was waved around by third-base coach John Russell. Fox scored the winning run in the 2-1 victory.

"I was sitting on the bench and [manager] Buck [Showalter] said, 'Fox, get in there.' I said, 'To hit?' and he said, 'No, get in there and run.' I'm like, 'Really?' So I grabbed my helmet, did a little stretch and told myself I'm going to have to score on a base hit," Fox said. "So, I saw the ball go down on the ground and I took off. I ran hard because I knew JR was going to send me, and I looked up and he was waving me in."

Fox made a deft move to avoid catcher Miguel Olivo's tag and was mobbed by teammates.

"I just knew I had to get my body out of the way and touch the plate," Fox said. "I slid in and jumped up and I was pumped."

It was the second comeback victory in three games for Baltimore. The Orioles also scored two runs in the bottom of the 13th to beat Seattle, 7-6, on Tuesday.

"I think it shows a lot about this team" Fox said. "Obviously, the start we've had isn't the best start we wanted to have, but it shows you what this team is capable of doing. It shows you the character this team has, just staying after it every day. We show up, we work hard, we play hard, and I think in the end of this we're going to like the results."

Markakis feeling better, starts in finale

BALTIMORE -- After missing Wednesday's game with what he called a "stomach virus," Baltimore right fielder Nick Markakis was in Thursday's starting lineup against the Mariners.

Markakis went 0-for-5 in the Orioles' 2-1 win in 12 innings as the Baltimore swept the three-game set.

"I couldn't hold anything down," Markakis said. "Now, I'm eating and drinking and feel fine. I woke up [Thursday] morning and felt sort of weak. But I've been eating and moving around and feel fine now."

Markakis is batting .231 with three home runs and 13 RBIs.

Uehara gets extra work against Mariners

BALTIMORE -- Orioles reliever Koji Uehara threw in back-to-back games for the first time this season in the Seattle series and has been one of manager Buck Showalter's best options out of the bullpen.

However, Uehara has uncharacteristically struggled with his control recently.

He walked four batters over his last 10 appearances after not allowing a free pass in any of his 43 appearances last season. Uehara has never walked two batters in a game at Camden Yards.

Uehara said he feels strong despite the extra work in the past few days. He continues to rely on his fastball and splitter to keep opponents off-balance.

"I feel really good," Uehara said through his interpreter. "There have been no burdens and it felt good."

The Orioles' bullpen allowed one run in three innings in Wednesday's 4-2 victory over Seattle -- a homer surrendered by Jason Berken. Uehara said the key is making sure everyone understands their role. Uehara said closer Kevin Gregg, who has converted seven of nine save opportunities, has been especially effective.

"I think everybody knows what their roles are and we have a great closer in Kevin," Uehara said. "What we need to do is keep passing the baton. We feel good about ourselves."

Tidbits

Orioles starter Brian Matusz, who is recovering from a left intercostal muscle strain, is scheduled to throw a bullpen session on Friday in St. Petersburg, Fla. He will then fly back to Baltimore on Sunday and make his first rehab start for Class A Frederick the following day. Manager Buck Showalter expects Matusz to make his start for Triple-A Norfolk on May 21. ... Reliever Josh Rupe, who had been designated for assignment on Tuesday to make room for shortstop J.J. Hardy, has cleared waivers and accepted his assignment to Triple-A Norfolk. ... The Orioles are 9-0 this season when scoring four or more runs. ... The O's will be without pitching coach Mark Connor for the next two games while he attends his son's graduation at the University of Tennessee law school. Bullpen coach Rick Adair will step in as pitching coach, and Minor League pitching coordinator Alan Dunn will serve as bullpen coach.