Baltimore Orioles complete a Boston Massacre


A 10-6 victory is hardly worthy of being referred to as the Boston Massacre. But anyone who saw yesterday’s game knows that the score is probably not indicative of how the game unfolded. Some folks will probably say that the slight hiccup by the Baltimore Orioles’ bullpen in the ninth inning could signify problems down the road – and this is not to say that it might not. However Joe Saunders was the pitcher who came on to close out the game, and he was the one who gave up the lion’s share of the runs late. As soon as Darren O’Day came out of the bullpen, the game was quickly over. O’Day almost certainly will be on the post season roster; Saunders probably will not.

Wei-Yin Chen gave the Orioles a strong effort in a starting role yesterday, in a game which featured 5.1 innings of perfect baseball before Chen allowed a double. Chen’s line: 7 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 4 K. While the ‘pen ended up playing a larger role in the end, that’s certainly not Chen’s doing; having a starter going deep at this point in the season where the Orioles are in the standings is huge. Especially when you have a bullpen as strong as that of the Orioles. The fresher they are for those crisp October evenings, the better.

The Boston Massacre moniker probably comes from the third inning, when the O’s did much of their damage. Alejandro De Aza continued his dominance over Boston pitching with an RBI-single, and he would come into score on Adam Jones‘ two-RBI double. Later in the inning, Steve Pearce would draw a bases loaded walk, which gave the Baltimore Orioles a 4-0 lead. Caleb Joseph and Ryan Flaherty would each add RBI-singles, as the O’s batted around in the inning and gave themselves a 6-0 cushion.

Througout this series, the Orioles seemed to be playing for a purpose where as Boston seemed to be “mailing it in” (this according to ESPN’s Sportscenter last night). And I say that as someone who knows what it looks like to mail it in come September. To draw a comparison, the O’s never really stopped playing for the post season last September. The ended up with lots of tired bats and lots of guys who just ran out of gas. But I’m not sure they ever faced a mismatch similar to what we saw from Boston in this series.

In his next turn at the plate in the fifth inning, Caleb Joseph would add a two-run homer to run the lead to 8-0 in the Orioles’ favor.

Courtesy of Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

Boston’s Xavier Bogaert’s would add a solo homer in the seventh to get the BoSox on the board, but two RBI-doubles (one from Flaherty and one from Kelly Johnson) in the top of the ninth would run the lead to 10-1. Boston would push out the aforementioned rally in the last of the ninth with a two-RBI double by Daniel Nava and a Rivero three-run homer off of Joe Saunders. However again, Darren O’Day ended the game when it needed to be ended, sending the Orioles home.

The Birds will now head home where they’ll have a day off today, and one in which several of the players will attend tonight’s Ravens/ Steelers game. Of course on the other end of that day off the Birds will open up a grudge match with the NY Yankees, and they’ll pick up a fight that they started in 1996. But more on that tomorrow. The O’s swept Boston in convincing fashion this week, as the clock ticks down even further.

On a side note, we at Birds Watcher join all Americans in taking pause today to remember the events of September 11, 2001. It was a day that will never be forgotten, and a day when our country found herself in the depths of strife. However one where we also saw the bravery and honor of our fellow countrymen – from the fields of Pennsylvannia to the streets of Manhattan. May we never forget the victims of those heinous acts, and may we always remember that we live in perpetual freedom due in part to those who took the initiative to defend it that day. May God rest the victims in peace, and continue to bless America.