Game 73: Orioles 7, Nationals 6

The Good:

* Corey Patterson brought the sparkplug act back, walking to lead-off the game and finishing with 3 hits plus a couple of stolen bases (including one on a pitch-out – against Pudge Rodriguez, no less). He would have had a home run too, but Nyjer Morgan went way over the fence in center to rob him.

* Nick Markakis also went 3-4 with a walk (of the intentional variety).

* Scott Moore pinch-hit for Garrett Atkins in the 8th inning, and crushed a two-run home run over the scoreboard in right. First home runs by a first-baseman for the O’s this year*. Then he added a single the following inning as part of the game winning rally. All of which raises the question; if Moore is pinch hitting for Atkins, then why wasn’t Moore starting instead of Atkins?

* As my very knowledgeable friend Sheldon pointed out to me – and Baseball Reference confirmed – the home run actually counted towards pinch-hitters and not first-basemen, even though Moore came in to play first. That means the O’s still don’t have a homer from that “power” position this year.

* Matt Wieters singled (and nice hit to the opposite field) and worked a couple of walks.

* The much maligned Orioles’ bullpen pitched 4.2 scoreless innings, letting the offense get the team back into the game. Weird.

The Bad:

* Jake Arrieta didn’t look that bad, but he still got roughed up. 4.1 IP, 8 H, 6 R (5 ER), 3 BB, 2 K. The 9 groundouts to 6 flyouts is nice though.

The Final:

A game that started so slowly and painfully (the Birds were down 6-0 in the 4th) turned out to have a pretty exciting finish. The O’s win their second in a row, 7-6, and move to 21-52 on the season. I’ll ignore the part about the winning run coming in on an error (one of four for the Nationals); a win’s a win.