The Baltimore Orioles fell to the Toronto Blue Jays, 5-1, in game one of three. The Birds need to win the next two in order to keep pace in the AL East.
The Baltimore Orioles fell 5-1 to Toronto in game one of a three-game set which opened last night at Camden Yards. In effect, this game was a pitcher’s duel which got away from the Orioles at the end a bit. The difference was that Toronto kept the pressure up and got a few bounces – the Orioles didn’t.
Wade Miley turned in another quality start which resulted in a loss. Miley’s line: 7.0 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 2 BB, 9 K. Both Miley and Toronto starter Estrada benefited from an incredibly wide strike zone over the course of the game, which had hitters looking back towards home plate umpire Alan Porter early and often.
The Orioles took a 1-0 lead in the last of the third on J.J. Hardy‘s solo homer to left. The ball seemed to barely clear the wall and was caught by a fan. The Toronto fielder didn’t seem to think the fan interfered with his ability to catch the ball, he just seemed miffed that he couldn’t rob the fan. Unfortunately or them however, that was the Orioles’ lone run of the night.
One inning later Toronto would equalize the game at one on Donaldson’s solo home run. Later in the inning Encarnacion’s RBI-single gave them a 2-1 lead. Now in my mind Toronto might have deaked the Orioles into surrendering that run. The Birds might have had a potential play at the plate, however Martin decided to try to go from first to third and was thrown out.
If Martin stops at second base there’s a potential play at home plate. It would have take a perfect throw and perhaps a small amount of luck. However by virtue of Martin deciding to give away an out on the base paths, the Orioles allowed Toronto to take the lead. In general one would say that’s a bone headed base running play. But was it that, or just outside-the-box thinking? (For the record, regardless of the methodology the Orioles did the right thing by taking the out on the base paths.)
Bautista would add a solo homer in the sixth, and Toronto would also tack on two runs in the ninth to close the game out at 5-1. Keep in mind folks, if the Orioles win the final two games of this series it’s no harm no foul. However they still have to win the final two games of the series – against a Toronto team that’s been hell-bent on standing in their way for years.
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On another front, the Orioles have been trying all month to make trades through waiers to bolster their roster for the stretch run. However according to Michael Bradburg of SB Nation, the NY Yankees are foiling them at every step of the way. When a player is placed on revocable waivers, that player must first pass through every team lower than the Orioles in the standings before the Orioles can claim him. New York being lower than the Orioles, are able to have their say in these matters.
According to the report, they’ve literally blocked every move the Orioles have tried to make this month – as is their right, mind you. It’s just unfortunate because while it’s all in accordance with the rules, the Orioles are trying to make their team better and they’re being blocked from doing so. Call it gamesmanship I suppose. The Orioles and the rest of the league have until 4 PM on Wednesday to make trades through waivers. After that any player aquired would not be eligible for a post season roster.