Baltimore Orioles finding it tough to put together


On one had you have to look at Chris Tillman‘s outing last night as one in which the Baltimore Orioles were put in a position to win the game. Tillman’s line: 5.2 IP, 10 H, 4 R, 3 BB, 3 K. However Tillman lacked that “special finish” that we’ve often seen on his pitches in past seasons. However make no mistake about the fact that Tillman had the Birds in a position where they had an opportunity to win.

Point being, it’s not all on one player – the starting pitcher or otherwise. Wins and losses are a team effort, and players and coaches alike would be the first to tell you that. So if a starter does his job, which is to put his team in a position to win, that might in theory be all one can ask. The Orioles had chances in this game, however they also make mistakes. And New York capitalized on those mistakes.

Things looks promising early for the Orioles, as Jimmy Paredes his a solo homer in the first inning to give the Orioles a 1-0 lead. However it was short lived, as New York put a couple of runners on base in the last of the first and later tied the game on Alex Rodriguez‘s sac fly-RBI. Mark Texeira would add an RBI-single, and the O’s trailed 2-1 after one.

Courtesy of Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

However more good news for Orioles fans is that Caleb Joseph stayed hot last night – by hitting a solo home run of his own in the third, tying the game at two. But this was a night that the Bombers weren’t looking to be outdone, as they took the lead back at 3-2 on ARod’s solo home run. Again, Joseph’s bat is continually staying hot, which is good news for the Orioles. He would add an RBI-double in the fifth to tie the game at three, however Texeira would put an RBI-double across in the last of the inning to close out the scoring in New York’s 4-3 victory.

It’s easy enough to say this is mostly on Chris Tillman, but the O’s had runners at first and second with one down in the sixth and were unable to convert.  One inning prior to that, Jimmy Paredes drew a walk after a lengthy at-bat, and proceeded to get picked off of first base. It’s always tough to suggest that every runner as such would have scored, however mistakes like that are tough to overlook – especially for a manager who pays such close attention to detail like Buck Showalter.

Prior to the game the O’s got the services of J.J. Hardy back for the first time this season, and Everth Cabrera went to the 15-day DL after being hit by a pitch last night on his foot. Ryan Flaherty is expected to re-join the team from the DL tomorrow, with Rey Navarro being the candidate that seems to be marked for the minors.

The aforementioned Alex Rodriguez home run of course was a milestone homer for the New York slugger, as he formally passed the great Willie Mays with the 661st homer of his career. The crowd in the Bronx gave him a nice ovation for the feat, and he obliged with a short curtain call – however make no mistake about the fact that this feat is tainted. It’s fair to suggest that there are other players who’s feats are just as tainted, as there’s no doubt about that. However I would submit that there’s a big difference between someone like Bartolo Colon bein dinged for PED’s, and someone like ARod. While both cheated, Colon hasn’t reached and now passed a mark held by one of the most beloved players of all time.

The series continues tonight in the Bronx, with Miguel Gonzalez getting the start for the O’s. He’ll be opposed by Adam Warren, with game time being set for just after 7 PM.