The outing provided for the Baltimore Orioles by Wei-Yin Chen last night should be model for how starts should go in the majors. Or at least one of the models. Some of the snarkier people out there might suggest that the model should be a no-hitter or perfect game; but work with me. Chen’s line: 7.2 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 5 K.
Chen was dealing from the beginning, and he even got a little help from his
Courtesy of Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
friends. Not an immense amount of help, mind you, but a little. Adam Jones gave the Orioles the lead before Chen even took the field with a solo home run in the first inning. As often as Orioles fans seem to find players that could have been haunting them, it has to be fun for them to find the shoe on the other foot at times. Jones, who of course came up through the Seattle farm system, always plays well in Seattle.
Seattle’s lone run of the night came in the last of the first on Franklin Gutierrez‘s solo homer which tied the game. So if you were keeping score at home while trying to stay awake, it looked like we might be in for a dog fight at that point. But looks can often be deceiving – as can early game trends.
Chen was able to settle back in, and we played on to a 1-1 tie. Chris Davis eventually saw fit to break that tie in the fourth with an RBI-single to give the O’s a 2-1 lead. In his next at-bat in the sixth with one out, Davis would put an exclamation point on the game with a solo homer of his own, which gave the O’s a 3-1 lead. Ultimately that would end up being a pretty big run.
Seattle’s Austin Jackson hit a two-out double in the ninth, and then moved to third on a wild pitch by Zach Britton. Jackson would later score from third on a passed ball by Caleb Joseph, which cut the lead to 3-2. However Britton recorded the final out, and the O’s ended up with a 3-2 victory in Seattle.
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As I said above, Adam Jones always seems to have big games when he returns to Seattle. Whether it’s a key home run or a catch in the field, he never ceases to remind Seattle fans that their former GM Bill Bavasi made perhaps the worst trade in their franchise’s history when he dealt Jones to the Orioles. At this point of course Jones is viewed as an Oriole, and aside from his big league debut almost all of his big moments in baseball have come in the orange and black. However it still have to be nice to return to where it started for him and play well.
The series continues tonight from Seattle with Chris Tillman on the mound for the Birds. Tillman of course has had some injury problems, although he avoided the DL due to just being skipped once or twice in the rotation – due to off days. So it’ll be interesting to see how long a leash is on him tonight. Luckily the bullpen is well rested after last night’s game. Tillman will be opposed by Seattle’s Taijuan Walker. Game time is set for just after 10 PM.