Baltimore Orioles fall to third in battle with inconsistency
The Baltimore Orioles appear to be once again battling inconsistency at the plate in the wake of their rain-shortened 8-1 loss to Boston. As a result, the Orioles have now fallen to third place in the American League East, and Boston swept the two-game series. Now having said that, fans should keep two things in perspective…
…first off, the O’s would be in the playoffs if the season ended today. They would be the second wild card team, and would play in the Wild Card game – vs. Boston (at Fenway Park). Is that ideal? Not really. But the Orioles would be in the postseason if the season ended today. Secondly, they’re only two games out of first place.
Dylan Bundy strugged against a Boston lineup that seems to have everything going it’s way right now. Bundy’s line: 4.1 IP, 9 H, 5 R, 2 BB, 2 K. Bundy was pitching-to-contact, and Boston was making contact and putting balls in play. While you want a guy to pitch-to-contact, that’s usually a bad combination.
The lone Oriole run was a Chris Davis solo homer with Boston already leading 1-0 in the last of the second. One inning later Boston re-took the lead on a Bradley two-run homer, and then got another two-run homer in the fifth from Leon. They also knotched two RBI-doubles from Ortiz and Bradley (who’s RBI-double scored two) in the sixth to run the lead to 8-1.
The game itself went into a rain delay after the sixth inning, and was never resumed due to some fairly serious storms that passed through the Baltimore area last night. So with that said, should fans be concerned about the course of the season? I mean…it’s fair to say that moving down into third place isn’t what one would want – right?
That goes without saying. However remember what I said above – the O’s are only two games out of first. Boston’s been hot for some time, and that continued when they came into play the Orioles. That’s probably why we saw various players doing chest bumps out on the field following home runs, which is about as non-traditional in a sport like baseball as you can get. However some would also argue that it’s simply Boston rolling into the fact that they’re hot. The alternative I suppose would be to plug along as if it were nothing…which in theory could emotionally induce inconsistency.
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So is that’s what’s going on with the Orioles? They won a huge game on Sunday, had an off day on Monday, and then fell flat. Did they in effect steer away from “Big Mo?” If not celebrating runs by not showing up the opponent is steering away from momentum, then yes I suppose they did. However I’m not going to suggest that it “induced” inconsistency. The O’s came up against a hot team that kind of seems to want to soak it all in right now.
And hopefully for their sake they can just move on. The division race is tight, and I just don’t see the Orioles simply falling out of it. There are probably some crass people out there saying the season’s over, and heck for all I know they may be right. Perhaps it’s all downhill from here and at the end of the day all the people to whom I told they’ll be in it until the end because of their offensive power will revolt against me – because their bats went to sleep. I just don’t see it. This is a pennant race, and sometimes the standings flop around.
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The Houston Astros now come to town for four games starting tonight, as the O’s hope their issues with inconsistency go by the wayside. Kevin Gausman will be on the mound for the Orioles, and he’ll be opposed by Houston’s Joe Musgrove. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.