- The Washington Times - Saturday, October 3, 2009

BALTIMORE | For all the misery he endured this season as manager of the last-place Baltimore Orioles, Dave Trembley deserved to have a day in which virtually everything went right.

Hours after the Orioles exercised the 2010 option on his contract Friday, assuring his return next season, Trembley watched the Orioles hit three home runs in a 13-7 rout of the Toronto Blue Jays.

It was the most runs Baltimore had scored in a game since August and quite a contrast from Aug. 22, 2007, when the Orioles gave up 30 runs hours after the team announced Trembley would return in 2008.

“That topic was brought up,” Trembley acknowledged.

Michael Aubrey hit a two-run homer and his first career grand slam, and Matt Wieters added a three-run shot for the Orioles, who have won two in a row following a 13-game skid.

And, in his final outing of the season, rookie Jason Berken (6-12) allowed four runs in five innings. He went 4-1 in his last eight starts after starting 2-11.

“Well, today was probably one of the more pleasant days we’ve all had in a long time. That’s great,” Trembley said. “Aubrey with a career day, Berken ends with a win as a rookie. … It’s one for the books, and a big day for everybody.”

Especially Aubrey. Playing in his 44th major league game, the rookie hit multiple homers for the first time. His six RBI doubled his previous career high and were the most by an Orioles player since Luke Scott had seven on July 7.

Knowing Trembley is coming back, Aubrey can consider it to be an audition for next year.

“It’s good to know what you are going to be dealing with in the future. Having uncertainty leaves everyone tiptoeing around,” he said. “But now everyone knows, everyone is comfortable with the way things have been run and handled.”

Cesar Izturis and Nick Markakis each had three hits for the Orioles, who need to win one of their final two games to avoid the third 100-loss season since moving from St. Louis before the 1954 season.

Edwin Encarnacion, Randy Ruiz and Jose Bautista homered for the Blue Jays, whose six-game winning streak ended. Before the game, several players expressed the desire to have a team meeting to address their concern over the fashion in which manager Cito Gaston is running the club.

Gaston said the faction is a minority, and he dismissed the idea he has to regain favor in his own clubhouse.

“The guys are fine. I talked about it early, so there isn’t a lot of need to go into it now,” Gaston said afterward.

John McDonald, who tied a season high with three hits, said, “We have two games left in the season. We need to just focus on playing baseball for three more days. We’re professionals. We need to just go out and play the game, like we’re supposed to.”

The 13 runs were the most allowed by Toronto this season.

This game was a disaster for the Blue Jays from the outset, when David Purcey (1-3) gave up three first-inning runs, including a two-run double by Markakis.

After an RBI single by Melvin Mora made it 4-0 in the third, Encarnacion hit a three-run shot and Ruiz added a solo drive to tie it in the fourth. In the bottom half, however, Wieters homered with two on to put the Orioles ahead for good.

Aubrey hit his first homer in the fifth to chase Purcey, and his grand slam came in the sixth off Dirk Hayhurst.

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