Baltimore Orioles: A bludgeoning win before hitting the coast

Detroit didn’t really stand much of a chance against a Baltimore Orioles team bent on victory yesterday afternoon. When you hit back-to-back-to-back homers in the first inning and Ubaldo Jimenez is already dealing strong, you immediately put the opponent on notice that it’s not their day. Jimenez’s line: 5.2 IP, 9 H, 1 R, 3 BB, 6 K.

Jonathan Schoop smacked a two-run homer in the first, followed in sequence by solo shots off the bats of Chris Davis and Trey Mancini. Before the crowd had even settled, the Birds led 4-0. One inning later they got an RBI-double by Manny Machado, followed by a solo homer by Rickard two innings later. And the rout was on.

Machado would add a two-run homer in that fourth inning – and again, the rout was on. The Birds would add numerous other runs until they hit twelve. That included a Beckham RBI-single, which means that he stayed hot since becoming an Oriole. Detroit would put two meaningless runs across in the top of the ninth, but the colors of this day were most certainly orange and black.

The Orioles finished the home stand with a 5-2 record, which is about all you can ask of any team. The issue of course is that they now head out on a ten-game road trip. Not only is it the longest road swing of the season, but it’s to the west coast. The Orioles will be on the road out on the coast for basically a week-and-a-half. And they won’t have a day off until they return home.

Manager Buck Showalter is well aware of how important this road trip coming up is, which he indicated in his comments after the game (quote courtesy of Roch Kubatko, MASNsports):

So, is the season over if we don’t do well on the West Coast? No. Our guys know what’s at the stake the rest of the season and that road trip includes that.

In a sense, the O’s actually lucked out this year. In 2016 they were out on the west coast on three different occasions due to playing the NL West in interleague play. However there’s little doubt that the distance, time change, etc. make this the toughest road trip of the season. The other issue is that the O’s will be light years away from their minor league system. If a roster move ends up having to be made, it might take awhile for a guy to join the team.

The road trip opens tonight in Anaehim. Dylan Bundy will be on the mound for the Birds, and he’ll be opposed by Anaheim’s JC Ramirez. Game time is set for just after 10 PM.

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