BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) -- Tommy Hunter took a big step toward locking up a spot in the Baltimore Orioles ' starting rotation by handcuffing the Pittsburgh Pirates in a 4-1 victory Monday night.
Hunter worked six innings and allowed one hit, walked one and struck out five.
"It was definitely fun," Hunter said. "That was baseball - going out for six innings and still having something left. We'll see what happens when April 6 and the rest of the season comes around."
Hunter was sharp, even though it was only his second Grapefruit League start. He was slowed at the start of camp by a sore back, then tossed five solid innings in his debut March 21 against the Toronto Blue Jays.
"The last time, it was a struggle to locate my fastball," Hunter said. "Tonight, I fell behind the first batter. But after that, I settled in and me and (catcher Matt Wieters ) were in sync pretty much all night."
Wieters had three hits and scored a run. He began the seventh inning with a double and scored on Mark Reynolds ' soft single to right field. Reynolds scored on a throwing error by third baseman Pedro Alvarez .
"Both pitchers looked like they were ready to start the season," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "Tommy had a good look on his face. You could tell he was really focused tonight - a lot of left-handed hitters, the wind was blowing out in right (field). I thought he was effective."
Left-hander Erik Bedard , who will be the Pirates' opening day starter, worked six-plus innings and gave up two runs (one earned) on seven hits and struck out five.
"I did what I try to do every game, change speeds and hopefully they don't hit it," Bedard said. "There was a lot of swing-and-miss early, but that was because of the (setting) sun. I just threw strikes and changed speeds."
Bedard was drafted by the Orioles in 1999 and pitched in 114 games for them from 2002-07.
Bedard held the Orioles hitless until the fifth, when Wieters led off with a single to center. Bedard ran into trouble in the sixth, when the Orioles loaded the bases on two-out singles by Nolan Reimold , J.J. Hardy and Nick Markakis . But Bedard found an escape hatch, blowing strike three past Adam Jones .
"I was throwing a lot of off-speed tonight, trying to make it better for the season," Bedard said. "I know the fastball's there."
Notes: The Orioles put LHP Zach Britton (left elbow soreness) on the 15-day disabled list. .. . 2B Brian Roberts (concussion) will break camp with the Orioles, but he will remain on the 15-day disabled list. Roberts will continue to participate in light pregame activities. ... The Orioles reassigned C John Hester , INF Steve Tolleson , RHP Armando Galarraga , LHP Dontrelle Willis and OF Scott Beerer to minor league camp. RHP Brad Bergesen , INF Matt Antonelli and RHP Jason Berken were optioned to Triple-A Norfolk. ... Alvarez was back in the lineup Monday after sitting out the previous three games due to inflammation in his left knee. He went 0-for-3, including two strikeouts.