Norris finding stride, pitches solid seven innings

Despite loss, right-hander turns in second consecutive quality start vs. Mets

Norris finding stride, pitches solid seven innings

NEW YORK -- After a rocky start to the season, Bud Norris is finding some consistency. The right-hander tossed his second consecutive quality start in Tuesday's 3-2 loss, a solid seven-inning outing.

"I'm really finding my stride," said Norris, who didn't record an out past the fifth inning in his first three starts. "I didn't have a great camp, but I feel strong, and I'm right where I want to be mentally. This is a tough game, got to keep making pitches. Once the ball leaves my hand, I have no control over it. But I felt good. Our rotation has been very good. We know what we can do. We kind of build off each other."

Norris' outing is the O's seventh consecutive quality start, though it wasn't all smooth sailing. The Mets snapped an 21 1/3-innings offensive drought by scoring three fourth-inning runs, including Kevin Plawecki's one-out, two-run double. Norris went on to retire the next 11 straight.

Plawecki's two-run double

"He pitched well for the most part. But we've been giving up some 0-2 base hits we shouldn't, but I can't fault him," manager Buck Showalter said. "He gave us a chance to win."

Norris allowed seven hits and a walk and struck out four in the 92-pitch outing and was happy that the rotation is starting to find its footing.

"We work hard, Sometimes the numbers don't really depict what's going on for us, and we understand that," Norris said. "It's a tough job. This isn't always a glamorous job, and we understand where we are, we are just getting into May. We have a lot of season left. We are playing .500 ball. We kind of did the same thing last year. We just got pick up our stride and keep going."

Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.