Game 2: Orioles 3, Rays 1

The Good:

  • Chris Tillman was smiled upon by the BABIP gods in this one. He pitched up in the strike-zone a lot* and didn’t have the best control, but every ball in play was converted into an out. Because he threw 101 pitches, Tillman was taken out after six innings despite having a no-no going. But hey, sometimes it’s better to be lucky than good. It looks like he mixed in at least a few distinct cutters, which is something to keep an eye on going forward. Final line; 6 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 5 K.

* He did get some swings and misses on that high fastball, but living up there are 88-91 is not going to go so well in the long run. Floor for HR/9 is probably 1.2 with that style.

  • Brian Roberts went 2-4 and delivered the O’s big blow of the game – a three-run homer in the top of the eighth inning.

The Bad:

  • The bullpen was hit or miss; 3 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 4 BB, 2 K. Mike Gonzalez especially was tough to watch (flashbacks to last year), coming out with a three-run lead and walking the first two hitters he faced. Luckily Koji was able to bail him out (fireman!). Much like Nick Markakis bailed out Kevin Gregg with a great jumping catch at the wall to end the game with a couple runners aboard.
  • Not much offense overall, with just 6 hits and 2 walks (another one from Hardy!) to 9 K’s.

The Final:

I told a friend during the latter innings (while it was still 0-0) that this is the kind of game an 82 win Orioles team would win even though they didn’t really deserve to. A minute later Roberts homered. Then the pen bent but didn’t break. I’ll certainly take it though. Day two, and the Orioles are still undefeated and in first place.