Baltimore Orioles: Chris Tillman Island is the place to be!
The Baltimore Orioles got exactly what they needed out of Chris Tillman last night, who helped them onto victory against Seattle in game two of three.
The Baltimore Orioles needed a strong start out of Chris Tillman last night. The bullpen of course had been used in lon relief on Tuesday, and with an early-afternoon start today before heading out to L.A., it was important that Tillman was able to perform last night.
Luckily for the BIrds, he did just that. Tillman’s line: 6.1 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 3 BB, 6 K. Tillman for the most part shut Seattle’s offense down all night, and mowed most of their hitters down. I think the best pitch he threw was his final one, which was a strike three – Tillman pulled a string and threw an 83 MPH change. He’s always at his best when he’s gettin his off speed pitches over for strikes. He was doing that last night.
The O’s got off to a 2-0 lead when Mark Trumbo and Matt Wieters hit back-to-back solo homers in the last of the second. However Seattle would come to within one on a homer by Martin in the third. They would tie the game at two on an Iannetta sac fly-RBI in the fourth. At that time it appeared that Tillman had his work cut out for him – but those were the only two runs he or any Oriole pitcher would surrender.
Call to the Pen
However in the last of the fourth Wieters would put the Birds back in the driver’s seat. His RBI-double scored Mark Trumbo, and the O’s took a 3-2 lead. One inning later with Trumbo at the plate again, the O’s would add on a fourth run as a result of a wild pitch. Schoop would also add a sac fly-RBI in the last of the eighth, as the O’s went onto victory last night by the score of 5-2.
The Orioles called on closer Zach Britton for a five-out save last night, and Britton inherited the bases loaded with one gone in the eighth. However he struck one batter out, and induced a groundout to first base on the second one to get out of the inning. That was as huge a moment in the game as anything else, as with the bases loaded Seattle easily could have taken the lead.
However the story of the game was Tillman, who moved to 5-0 at home this year. Showalter was fairly complimentary of his ace after the game, as he discussed his outing (quote courtesy of Roch Kubatko, MASNsports):
"Chris was good. That’s a good offensive team. A lot of left-handed hitters. The changeup was good for him. He was solid again. What’s he got, 6-1? He was good. Carried stuff the whole outing."
As I said, Tillman’s at his best when his off speed pitchers are getting over for strikes. That was his issue earlier in his career; he’s always had a good fastball, however it was the only pitch he really got over for a strike. All guys had to do was sit on it. Not so anymore.
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Today and tomorrow end up being fairly difficult days for the O’s, as they finish up this series at home with an aforementioned early afternoon affair. On these quick mid-week tunarounds, Showalter always likes to say sleep fast.
The O’s don’t play many mid-week day games at home, and of course the reason for this one is due to the travel schedule. Immediately following the game they’ll fly out to Anaheim for a three-game weekend set. Of course they don’t get the liberty of a day off after heading to the west coast, but that’s another story.
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So again, a quick turnaround for today’s series finale against Seattle. Tyler Wilson will be on the mound for the Orioles, and he’ll be opposed by Seattle’s Nathan Karns. Game time is set for just after 12:30 PM.