Game 40: Orioles 7, Red Sox 8

The Good:

  • The O’s batters had a good approach at the plate, walking 8 times (4 by Luke Scott, and one each by Nick Markakis, Adam Jones, Matt Wieters, and JJ Hardy). Scott’s four free passes were a new career high, and give him as many unintentional walks on the day as Vlad has on the year.
  • They also took advantage of an easy battery to run on by stealing bases left and right (two for Brian Roberts, and one each by Nick Markakis and Mark Reynolds).
  • Reynolds also hit his 5th home run of the season, a shot to dead center.
  • Vlad didn’t walk (shocker!), but he did go 3-5 with a pair of doubles.

The Bad:

  • You know, despite 5 shutout innings, Chris Tillman did not pitch well. He had some trouble throwing strikes and was up in the zone quite a bit. He walked 3 compared to just 2 K’s. And he didn’t even hit 91 mph with the fastball. He had a nice change-up, at least, but I think it’s obvious that if the O’s are going by current production then Tillman is the guy losing his rotation spot when Brian Matusz comes back. Sending Britton down for a bit to get an extra year of team control would be great, but there’s virtually no way they’ll do that, I think.
  • Mike Gonzalez’s tough season continued, as he gave up 4 runs on 3 hits while getting only one out. Three of them were unearned, thanks to a couple errors, but people are still going to be clamoring for him to be cut. Gonzalez isn’t really as bad as his near 8 ERA would suggest – .351 BABIP and 18.3% HR/FB rate coming into this game overpower his decent strike-out (8.8 K/9) and walk (3.6 BB/9) numbers – and there’s not much point in cutting bait given the lack of a great replacement.
  • Jeremy Accardo followed Gonzalez, allowed two of Mike’s baserunners to score (the third charged to the lefty), and then got only one out himself in between allowing a run on two hits.
  • Kevin Gregg got an out before blowing the save in the 9th, giving up two runs on two hits and a walk.
  • Derrek Lee had to leave the game with an oblique strain, and he might be out a while with the injury.

The Final:

Welp, at least this isn’t new. O’s take an early lead in Boston, and then the bullpen blows it. Sucks. But as soon as it went from 6-0 to 6-1, you could kind of feel it coming.