Tyler Wilson was as dominant as dominant can be in the Baltimore Orioles’ 9-2 victory over Minnesota yesterday. The O’s used homers to score their runs.
You’re going to find it tough to be much more dominant than Tyler Wilson was yesterday afternoon in Minneapolis. The Orioles’ offense did what it was designed to do in the series finale in the Twin Cities, and Wilson took care of the rest as the O’s defeated Minnesota 9-2. Wilson’s line: 7.0 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 2 K.
One of the hidden takeaways from that stat line is the fact that Wilson was pitching-to-contact all afternoon long. And that seems to be his modus operandi for the most part. He keeps the ball on the ground, and records outs by having opposing hitters put the ball in play. That’s a great way to keep your pitch count down, and to get through innings quickly. Wilson did both of those things yesterday.
The Orioles took an early 2-0 lead on Mark Trumbo‘s two-run homer in the second, however Minnesota got to within one on a home run by Sano in the last of the inning. However that was only a warm-up in a sense. Chris Davis added a two-run blast of his own in the fourth, followed by another Trumbo home run – this one a solo shot. In the last of that same fifth inning Minnesota would net one more run on a ground out, but at the end of the day this game belonged to the orange and black.
The Birds closed out the game with an RBI-double by Chris Davis in the sixth, an RBI-ground out
by Davis in the seventh, and the coup de grace…a two-run Adam Jones homer in the eighth. And that’s your ballgame in a sense. Coming into what ended up being a truncated (two-game) series, there were a few Minnesota players who claimed they were hunting for “payback” after the Orioles swept them in the first series of the season at Camden Yards. In reality it was the Orioles who were looking for payback – from a team that swept them in seven games last season. That sweep in and of itself may well have prevented the Orioles from going to the postseason.
However while the bats of Jones and Davis heated up and that of Trumbo stayed strong, the story of this game to me was Tyler Wilson. I’m not sure there was a more dominant pitching performance in major league baseball yesterday overall – short of Scherzer’s effort in Washington. I’ve said for quite some time that Wilson really earned his way onto the roster in spring training. However we’ve often seen guys rightfully earn their roster spots, but then lose them early on. That hasn’t been the case with Tyler Wilson to this point.
Wilson has truly proven that he belongs at the big league level, and often times that’s tougher to do than it is to get there in the first place. My personal opinion is that he gave the best start of his career yesterday in Minnesota. Whether it remains the best start of his career is something that remains to be seen. But needless to say he appears to have turned a corner.
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The Orioles will make up Monday’s game on July 28th at Target Field – on what was previously an off day. They also announced that the rained out game against Tampa from last month will be made up as part of a split-doubleheader on Saturday June 25th. The makeup game will be at 1 PM, and the previously scheduled game against Tampa will be moved to 7 PM as the second part of the twin bill.
The O’s now head home following this short “road trip,” and they’ll welcome Detroit in for four games. Ubaldo Jimenez will get the start tonight, and he’ll be opposed by Detroit’s Mike Pelfrey. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.