Chris Tillman won his 15th game as the Baltimore Orioles returned to their winning ways and held on to beat Oakland by the score of 9-6.
It appeared that the Baltimore Orioles had a big lead, and that Chris Tillman was going to coast to his 15th victory of the season. At the end of the day however, Oakland mounted a rally and made a comeback attempt. However the bottom line is that the Birds were able to close them out, snapping a three-game skid – leaving them a half game out of first.
Tillman turned in the Orioles’ seventh straight quality start, pitching a strong seven innings. Tillman’s line: 7 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 0 BB, 4 K. The zero waks and four strikeouts are incredibly telling in my view. Tillman pitched-to-contact all afternoon, and it paid off.
The O’s got on the board first in the fourth inning on Mark Trumbo‘s RBI-single which was followed by an Alvarez two-RBI double. That gave the Birds a 3-0 lead, and we were off to the races. One inning later Trumbo opened the game wide open with a grand slam, although Oakland countered with a Healy two-run homer in the bottom of the inning.
Come the seventh inning it was Adam Jones‘ turn – his solo homer ran the score to 8-2, which soon became 9-2 on an additional RBI-single off the bat of Alvarez. Speaking for myself, I would have thought that lead was safe (and it was). But you don’t stop playing until the final out, and Oakland proved to the Orioles that they weren’t the only team who viewed things that way.
Oakland smacked a homer, a two-RBI double, and an RBI-single in the last of the eighth. Needless to say, given the way things had gone in the first three games of the series, it put the fear of God into the Orioles. The last thing they wanted to do was blow a seven-run lead in the later innings. However they got out of the inning, and Britton retired the side in the ninth to win it for the Birds.
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15 wins is a career high for Chris Tillman, however more importantly this victory got the Orioles off the skids. I’d say that they can now get the heck out of town, and technically that would be true. However the O’s of course are in the Bay Area for an entire week, and will head to San Francisco starting tonight. For what it’s worth, that’s a ballpark that’s suited a bit more to the type of game the O’s generally play!