Sorry for the obnoxious title but it feels like forever since I’ve been able to type those words and man does it feel good. An 8-game losing streak is snapped tonight. And not just snapped, but shredded into parts and stomped on as the O’s win 11-0 over the Twins in the 2nd game of their 4 game series. I am just so filled with glee over this, I even did some jumping around the room. Everything was on for the O’s tonight: the starting pitching, the bullpen pitching, and, most importantly, the hitting. Let’s break this gem of a game down.
Jake Arrieta: what a start. He went 6 innings with 0, that’s right ZERO, runs, 4 hits, 3 walks, and 4 strike outs. This was his first game this season where he didn’t allow any runs.
He’s retired 75% of every lead-off batter he’s faced. In the 4th, he threw 30 pitches, bringing hit total to 75 so early in the game. When he’s pitching, after he reaches 75+ pitches in a game, the batters he faces’ batting average is .455. Ouch. But, tonight that was not the case. He went two more innings and gave up only one hit.
At the end of the 5th, he walked 2 batters, but then got the 3rd out by striking out the batter on 3 pitches, including a beautiful 76 mph curveball that curved beautifully on the last pitch to get the looking strikeout.
Jason Berken: pitched 2 innings with no hits and no runs and striking out 2.
In the 7th, he retired the side in order. In the 8th, he had the bases loaded but got out of it with a strikeout.
Josh Rupe: came in the 9th inning and retired the side in order to secure the win for Arrieta and the shut-out of the Twins.
Matt Wieters: He is now 5 for 5 with RISP, the best in the league. In the 2nd, he got an RBI single to score Adam Jones. With the bases loaded in the 5th, he hits a base-clearing double giving him 4 RBIs on the night and putting the O’s up 7-0.
Robert Andino: In the 2nd, he put the team up 3-0 with a 2 RBI single. In the 3rd, he made an amazing defensive play that’s worthy of a web gem/top-10 on ESPN. He went 3 for 3 and got a walk, getting him on base at every at-bat he faced. That’s clutch to get the number 9 hitter on base every time.
Mark Reynolds: Last season, he struck out every 2.8 plate appearances; this season, he has struck out every 3.7 appearances. That’s getting almost a whole extra plate appearance without striking out. This could be really good for the team if this keeps up.
Brian Roberts: He had an RBI double in the 4th, upping his hitting streak to 8. He also had a 3 RBI night, helped by Andino getting on at every at-bat.
Vladimir Guerrero: Hits a 3-run homerun in the 9th and went 2 for 5 for the night.
Nick Markakis: He went 0 for 4 at the plate with a walk. He was really the only Oriole tonight that didn’t do anything. He has yet to really do anything all season. His bat still needs to heat up.
Finally, a beautiful game put together by our O’s. They were on fire tonight and let’s just hope this was the game they needed to get their confidence back. This could not have come at a better time seeing as the game tomorrow night is being televised on ESPN. Maybe the nation will be able to see them win one. Go O’s!