Game 73: Orioles 5, Reds 4

The Good:

  • Adam Jones hit his 12th home run on the season.
  • Matt Wieters had a couple doubles at the plate and also threw a runner out on the bases. He’s now back over 40% on the year, and it’s the second straight year he’s seen a nice jump in his rate of nabbing runners (24% to 32% to 40% now).
  • Blake Davis picked up his first (and second) career hit and RBI with a triple, and then later added a bunt single. And no errors (though he did run into Nick Markakis on a pop-up that the outfielder was calling for)!
  • JJ Hardy singled, doubled, and drew a walk.
  • So did Derrek Lee, who also added a walk-off home run in the bottom of the 13th. Exciting!
  • Jim Johnson pitched two shutout innings in a tie game, generating a whole bunch of groundballs and K’ing a batter. He passed Koji Uehara for the lowest ERA out of the pen – now just 2.40.
  • Kevin Gregg looked pretty good too, pitching a perfect 9th including striking out Joey Votto despite falling behind in the count to him 3-0.
  • Koji wouldn’t let JJ one-up him, so he pitched a pair of scoreless inning with 3 K’s, to drop his ERA to 2.31. I’m constantly amazed how he’s able to throw his 88-90 mph fastball by people – his whiff rate on the pitch this year is around 30%, which is amazing.

The Bad:

  • Chris Jakubuaskas wasn’t particularly good; 5 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 BB, 3 K. I’m still a bit confused why he’s in the rotation while Brad Bergesen is in the bullpen. The latter is much younger and almost unambiguously the better pitcher – shouldn’t he be the one getting regular starts?

The Final:

Enough offense and good relief work got it done for the O’s tonight. The Birds take the first game of their series with the Reds, and avoid 40 losses for the time being.