Baltimore Orioles back in first; Chris Davis, Parmelee homer


If you looked at the Baltimore Orioles in the month of May, they hardly looked the part of defending AL East Champions. The offense as a whole couldn’t score runs, Chris Davis was struggling, and it was tough to win games. Flip the calendar to June however, and we’re dealing with a different story.

The O’s of late can do no wrong, and they’ve slowly ascended back up the standings. With tonight’s 8-0 win over Cleveland, the Orioles officially reclaimed first place in the AL East (albeit by percentage points) for the first time since mid-April. Keep in mind, this doesn’t mean that they’re guaranteed to repeat as champions and steamroll through the playoffs. However needless to say, they’ve gotten their sea legs underneath them.

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Chris Davis being put on Bobby Bonilla payout plan by the Orioles
Chris Davis being put on Bobby Bonilla payout plan by the Orioles /


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  • Perhaps most notable in this game was the fact that Chris Tillman seemed to regain some of his form from last year. Tillman’s line: 7 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 6 K. Tillman wasn’t only sharp, but he seemed to get stronger as the game went on. In a season that’s been a struggle for Tillman to this point, that’s a great sign.

    The Orioles covered the corners in the last of the second after a fielding error by Jason Kipnis and a J.J. Hardy double. That brought Ryan Flaherty to the plate, and his two-RBI double gave the O’s a 2-0 lead. For the record, those were unearned runs given the error.

    Chris Davis, who’s regained his form along with his team, led off the last of the

    Courtesy of Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

    fourth. And he did so in grand fashion, smacking a solo homer onto the flag court in right field which put the O’s ahead 3-0. Later in the inning with one down, Travis Snider would hit one out to right center to run the score to 4-0. But the inning wasn’t done yet – in terms of scoring, that is. After two walks, Manny Machado would smack a two-RBI double tightly down the third base line, which broke the game wide open. 

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    But still, the inning wasn’t over. With Machado still at second, Chris Parmelee continued his hot streak of late by smacking a two-run home run to give the Orioles an 8-0 lead. At the end of the day, when you’re pitching as well as Tillman was and you have a bullpen as strong as the Orioles do, eight runs probably aren’t necessary. However unnecessary runs are always good to have in one’s back pocket.

    As I said above, the Birds have slowly moved back up the standings and are now in first place in the AL East – even if only by percentage points. There’s no questions that it was tough going for awhile in Birdland, however this team adapted – just as Buck Showalter-led teams always seem to do. By the way, this game also included a Travis Snider gold glove diving catch in the outfield. A little bit of everything this weekend!

    Incidentally the O’s not only swept Cleveland this weekend, but they shut them out in the final 19 innings of the series (two games plus one inning). Throw that in there with sweeping a doubleheader, and needless to say it was a pretty special weekend.

    The Orioles will welcome the Texas Rangers to town for a four-game series starting tomorrow night. Bud Norris will get the start for the Birds, and he’ll be opposed by Texas’ Wandy Rodriguez. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.

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