Baltimore Orioles: Tick-tock


When I watch football and my team is ahead but the opponent is trying to battle back at the end I have a specific phrase I’ll say after each play (with the clock running):“…tick tock!” This of course is meant to mean that time’s running out, as we count the seconds until the clock says zero. And that’s where fans of the Baltimore Orioles find themselves today; just counting the moment until that magic number, and the clock, says zero.

Chris Tillman had halfway deecnt stuff in last night’s game, however in typical Boston/AL East fashion the BoSox took and fouled off a lot of pitches. Tillman’s line: 5 IP, 6 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 5 K. Boston has always fouled off a lot of pitches, however it’s generally been due to them seeing the ball well. Last night it appeared to be that they were attempting to catch up with many of Tillman’s pitches. As has happened over the course of the season, Tillman’s breaking ball was deadly last night. And it caught a lot of Boston hitters looking over the course of his outing.

Courtesy of Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Following a leadoff walk by Markakis, Alejandro De Aza became the latest Oriole to join the ranks of the players who just showed up and started to produce. De Aza hit his first home run as an Oriole, a two-run shot that gave the Birds a 2-0 lead. Fast-forward to the third inning, and De Aza followed that up with his second homer as an Oriole as his encore, giving the O’s a 3-0 lead. to further the cause, Adam Jones followed that up with a solo shot of his own, and the Birds led 4-0.

Boston would get a run back in the fourth on a Bogaerts homer, however Tillman kept them in check for the most part. They had runners at second and third with two out in the last of the third, and Tillman shut the inning down by striking out David Ortiz. Two innings later in the fifth Ortiz came up again, this time with the bases loaded (following a walk and two base hits). Tillman managed to get himself off the hook that time with a double-play, ending his night.

If you think back to the 14 losing seasons, the Orioles made it their business to leave small armies on base against guys like Ortiz. How often would fans see thee O’s leave the bases loaded after inning-ending double-plays? So there is a bit of irony in the fact that this time around it was Ortiz in a sense letting the O’s off the hook. Andrew Miller would also see some extended action in this game, marking his return to his former hometown park.

With New York losing as well last night, the Orioles’ magic number officially sits at 9 – we’ve reached single digits!

So it’s all but a waiting game for Orioles fans. At some point the O’s will clinch the AL East, and if I know Baltimore…what a celebration it’ll be! The series at Fenway concludes this afternoon with

Wei-Yin Chen

on the mound for the Orioles. He’ll be opposed by

Brandon Workman

, with game time set for just after 1:30 PM. Thus here we remain, with just a little bit of time on the clock for the likes of NY and Toronto, who mathematically still have a shot at the division. So bearing that in mind…

“tick tock.”