Orioles' Waters one-hits explosive Angels in major league debut

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) -- Chris Waters couldn't have asked for a better major league debut.

The Baltimore Orioles rookie held the team with baseball's best record to one hit over eight innings, beating the Los Angeles Angels 3-0 on Tuesday night.

"It's a great feeling," Waters said. "I just went out there and tried to focus on the mitt as much as possible and keep my mind down in the zone. I came in here knowing that they were probably going to take pitches on me because I'm a rookie coming into a big stadium. So I really tried to pound the zone."

The 27-year-old left-hander, who began his professional career in 2000, had the best big-league debut of any Orioles pitcher since Sept. 18, 1988, when right-hander Bob Milacki beat Detroit 2-0 with eight innings of one-hit ball, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

Waters' teammates were ecstatic about his performance against Angels veteran Jon Garland.

"That's great. Nine years of frustration, and he took it out on the best team in baseball," designated hitter Aubrey Huff said.

The AL West-leading Angels totaled 23 runs in Garland's previous two starts, including an 11-6 win at Camden Yards. But all they could muster against Waters (1-0) was a leadoff single in the second inning by Vladimir Guerrero on a changeup low and away.

"You can't expect the team to go out and put up five or 10 runs every game. You've got to get a break in there at some point," Garland said.

Waters, who turns 28 on Aug. 17, was promoted from Triple-A Norfolk and inserted into the rotation due to the ineffectiveness of Radhames Liz -- demoted to the minors on July 27. Waters threw 104 pitches, striking out three, walking three and hitting a batter. He retired 14 of his last 15 batters.

"I don't care how much of a scouting report you have. When you step in the box the ball is moving, it's different than words," Torii Hunter said. "He didn't throw the offspeed stuff until the second time around. He threw all fastballs and one changeup the first time around. ... He knew what he was doing."

Waters began the season at Double-A Bowie, going 8-6 with a 4.65 ERA in 24 games. Then he went 3-1 with a 3.60 ERA in six starts for Norfolk. To make room for him on the roster, the Orioles optioned infielder Brandon Fahey to the Tides.

"Yesterday we were kind of trying to hide Chris in the hotel," manager Dave Trembley said. "I told him to just stay in the hotel and don't come to the ballpark because I've got to make a move after the game and I really don't want people to start looking over their shoulder seeing which guy's going to go."

The original plan for Baltimore was to call up righty Hayden Penn, whose career has taken several detours because of injuries the past 1 1/2 seasons after he went 0-4 with a bloated 15.10 ERA in six starts with the Orioles in 2006.

Trembley wanted Penn -- who went on the disabled list in May with a shoulder ailment -- to throw two innings and 35 pitches in his final tuneup with Triple-A Norfolk. But he lasted only two-thirds of an inning against Richmond, allowing three runs and three hits on 31 pitches.

"I think the consensus of opinion was that he wasn't given an adequate opportunity to prepare himself to come here," Trembley said.

The Orioles' player development people recommended Waters.

When asked if Waters was going to get another start, Trembley said: "That's like asking if on Halloween, they're going to have Trick or Treat."

All-Star closer George Sherrill earned his 31st save in 37 chances, allowing a leadoff single in the ninth by Erick Aybar.

The Angels were shut out for the fifth time this season, and first time at home. The only time they got a runner past first base was in the third inning, when Aybar grounded out to shortstop with runners at second and third. Hunter's hitting streak ended at 15 games, as did Garret Anderson's 12-game streak.

Garland (10-7) allowed three runs and nine hits over seven innings, including Luke Scott's 19th homer in the seventh. The right-hander did not record a strikeout or a walk. Baltimore opened the game with four consecutive hits, including an RBI double by Nick Markakis and a run-scoring single by Melvin Mora.

Game notes
Orioles CF Adam Jones, who was sent back to Baltimore after Monday night's 6-5 loss to get an MRI on his left foot, learned that it was broken. He was placed on the 15-day disabled list and will not have any baseball activity for at least three weeks. Jones was injured when he fouled a ball off his instep on Saturday at Seattle.