Dylan Bundy of the Baltimore Orioles needs to be able to find a way to win games when his “good stuff” suddenly isn’t at his disposal.
Dylan Bundy of the Baltimore Orioles is going to have to find a way to win games without his good stuf if he’s going to be a successful pitcher at the big league level. It’s understood that you’re going to have starts where your good pitchers just aren’t gettin over, or that added finish or polish just isn’t there. As a big league pitcher you have to find ways to work around that here and there, which Bundy wasn’t able to do yesterday in Tampa. Bundy’s line: 3.2 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 2 BB, 7 K.
Bundy put the Orioles in an early hole when Kevin Kiermaier smacked a solo homer in the first inning. However one inning later in the second, the Birds had the lead on J.J. Hardy’s two-RBI double – only to find themselves trailing again in the botto of the second on Nick Franklin’s two-run homer. Even at a diminished power level, Tampa is still that classic anything you can do I can do better type of team. Odds are they were tired of being pushed around by the Orioles for two days.
Bundy was never able to get a shutdown inning after Oriole bats would either tie the game or give him a lead. The Birds tied the game again on a Michael Bourn solo homer, and then took the lead in the third when Manny Machado scored on a passed ball. The Birds were able to expand that lead to 5-3 on Jonathan Schoop’s sac fly-RBI, and it appeared that the Orioles were planning on scoring big for Bundy.
And they were – scoring big for Bundy, that is. However as I said above, Bundy was never able to get that shutdown inning. In the last of the fourth he had Kiermaier down to his final strike with two outs and the bases loaded, and Kiermaier uncorked a two-RBI single to tie the game. That also chased Bundy, as Buck Showalter made a pitching change.
The Orioles would briefly get the lead back, but again – Tampa’s attitude is anything you can do I can do better. Corey Dickerson drove in two additional runs for homestanding Tampa, and the Orioles fell in the series finale. The good news for the O’s however is that they took two-of-three from their division rivals, which is really all you can ask.
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The O’s now have a day off before they play perhaps the biggest game of the season – to this point at least. They’ll have three games in Detroit starting tomorrow evening. People know the standings, so I don’t have to remind anyone that Detroit is right on the Orioles’ heels in the wild card race. So the Orioles’ goal has to be to get at least two-of-three in this series.
Let’s put it this way; the O’s have what Detroit wants, which is a playoff spot. Detroit is coming for that spot, and it’s up to the Orioles to defend it. Furthermore Detroit has several teams nipping at their heels as well -so the pressure is on them to a degree.
But it’s also on the O’s. They need to do everything in their power to ensure that they hold onto their lead in the wild card race. No pressure or anything…! However the good news is that if they just keep winning, they’ll put space between themselves and Detroit. Especially this weekend.