What has gotten into the Birds? They either really want to play spoiler to any wild card race team they play or they want to end the season with some dignity or…what? I really don’t know.
It’s not even that they’re playing better. They’re playing with more energy, they’re trying really hard every day, they don’t give up even when they’re down by a few runs, they play with passion. Showalter has been ejected twice in the past like week and a half! I mean really, where’s this team been all season?
Last night was no different as they beat the Red Sox 6-4, taking 3 of the 4 games at Fenway and winning their third straight series, which is the first time they’ve won 3 straight series all year. Tommy Hunter was on the mound for probably the last time this season because he left in the 7th with what looked like a groin injury. He was walking fine so it’s probably just a strain of some sort but my guess is he doesn’t make another appearance. He didn’t have a great outing, giving up 9 hits and 4 runs in 6 2/3 innings, but it was just enough thanks to the offense. The bullpen pitched another perfect outing thanks to Rapada, Willie Eyre (who’s really coming along nicely), and the save by Jim Johnson.
The offense is what did it. Mark Reynolds started things off with his 35th home run of the season. The Red Sox tied it up after Crawford hit a lead-off triple and Scutaro was walked followed by an RBI ground-out from Varitek. Hunter gave up a single and it looked like this inning could get out of hand when he got Aviles to ground into a double play. The ball went to Hunter who then threw it almost just out of the reach of Hardy at 2nd who threw to Reynolds at first, who made a great play.
Crawford hit a 2-run double in the 4th, making it 3-1. In the next inning, Ortiz added to that with an RBI of his own. At 4-1, I didn’t think the Orioles would be able to come back from this one. Hardy hit an RBI single the next inning to make it 4-2. Then, Mark Reynolds hits his second home run of the night, a 2-run homer, to tie it up at 4. He killed it up over the Green Monster and out of Fenway. It was beautiful. It wasn’t long until the O’s took the lead with Guerrero’s 2-run single. I may have some new opinions on this guy, which I’ll write about sometime in the off season.
It was a great game. Unfortunately, the Rays were swept by the Yankees in their double header so they didn’t make up any ground BUT the Angels also won so they’re tied with the Rays, 2 games back from the Red Sox. What would be even better than the Rays stealing a playoff appearance from the Sox would be if the Angels did it. This wild card race is so unbelievably tight and guess what O’s fans? It may be the Orioles that have the final say as the season wraps up with a 3-game series in Baltimore against none other but the Boston Red Sox.