Baltimore Orioles: Fair is foul, foul is fair
The Baltimore Orioles fell to Boston once again, although Chris Davis almost had a game-changing home run.
The Baltimore Orioles fell victim to Boston pitching for a second straight game, falling to the BoSox, 6-2. Of course some people will point out that Boston’s pitcher (Rodriguez) was a former Oriole farmhand and that the Birds shouldn’t have let him get away. Keep in mind that Rodriguez has had his his struggles in Boston along with injury problems (in fact last night was his season debut after coming off the DL). He was just good last night.
Kevin Gausman had a rough start to the game, but to his credit he smoothed things out and was able to pitch deeper into the game than one would have initially thought. Gausman’s line: 6.0 IP, 5 H, 5 R, 2 BB, 8 K. Gausman is still winless on the year, and almost predictably the Birds only put two runs on the board for him. Or did they not…?
Betts and Pedroia led the game off with solo homers, putting Boston in the driver’s seat early. Betts would come up to bat again in the second, and he ended up smacking his second homer of the game. However this one was of the three-run variety, and Boston led 5-0.
However one inning later the BIrds got themselves on the board. Nolan Reimold‘s RBI-double cut the lead to 5-1 in the third. Adam Jones would add an RBI-single in the fifth, however in the seventh Betts would smack his third homer of the game to run the lead to 6-2. Betts would come to bat once more in the game, and predictably there were calls on my twitter feed to walk him. However to their credit the Orioles pitched to him, and he grounded out.
So pretty simple…O’s lose 6-2, right? Well, the game should have been a lot different. With two outs and a runner on base in the last of the eighth, Chris Davis hit what appeared to be a two-run homer. And it wasn’t just any home run – it was deep into the night, and it appeared to flirt with the Warehouse in right field. Needless to say, it was a shot that was almost unseen before at Oriole Park at Camden Yards.
It was so high and so deep, that it flew well over the foul pole…prompting first base umpire Doug Eddings to rule it foul. Now keep in mind that these plays happen very quickly, umpires have to make snap decisions, and in this case the ball was so high that it was hard to tell if it was fair or foul. Eddings called it foul. The umpires reviewed it, and they proved to be inconclusive.
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My personal opinion is that it was a fair ball, but I also get the fact that there wasn’t enough evidence to overturn the call on the field as it was made. Having said that, manager Buck Showalter also indicated after the game that the Orioles found a camera angle that proved it was fair beyond a reasonable doubt (quote courtesy of Roch Kubatko, MASNsports):
"Chris hits a home run and we can’t get a camera angle that will show it. We finally got one that showed it was fair. I think everybody knew it was probably fair, but if they had called it fair, they wouldn’t have overturned it. So those are some of those things that you present for yourself that matter a lot when you get into some deficits early."
Mind you, if that’s ruled a home run the O’s are still trailing 6-5 at that moment. However needless to say, they have some momentum and it changes the way that Boston pitches to them moving forward. In effect, Davis’ strength actually worked against him in that instance because he hit the ball so high and so deep that it came across as a foul ball.
Next: Orioles lose to Red Sox on Memorial Day
The Orioles are still seaerching for their first win of this series, and they’ll have that opportunity again tonight. Mike Wright will be on the mound for the Birds, and he’ll be opposed by Boston’s Joe Kelly. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.