Baltimore Orioles: Season on the brink

The Baltimore Orioles need to get it together quickly if they aren’t going to quietly slip out of contention for what’s left of the season. Last night Ubaldo Jimenez probably pitched well enough to put the O’s in a spot to win. However Jimenez was eventually let down by the defense behind him, of all things. Jimenez’s line: 5.0 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 2 BB, 5 K.

Toronto took a 1-0 lead in the second inning on an RBI-groundout by Goins. However while that went as an earned run, in reality it shouldn’t have been. Previous to that Hernandez had smacked a double, however he advanced to third on a Mark Trumbo error. All things being the same, that’s a run that probably wouldn’t have scored.

Urena’s RBI-double scored Barney later in the inning to give Toronto a 2-0 lead. Now while that run would have scored anyways, Barney had gotten aboard with a double but took third on an Adam Jones error. So again in fairness to Jimenez, those are two runs that came about as a direct result of errors.

Jones atoned for his mistake in the fourth inning with an RBI-double which cut the lead to 2-1. However opposing teams know that the Orioles have to be pushing at this point trying to stay in the race. And they’re using that edge against them. Goins certainly did when he smacked a solo homer against Jimenez in the last of the fourth, giving Toronto a 3-1 lead. But then again one inning later, Trumbo countered back with a solo homer of his own.

But when things aren’t going your way (as they aren’t for the O’s right now), the breaks go to the other side – always. Hernandez managed to get aboard with an infield single in the last of the sixth following a HBP. With Machado guarding the line, Hernandez provided a swinging bunt. It was smart of Machado to guard the line. However had he done the wrong thing and played in, that would have been at least one out. Barney later hit an infield single of his own, which scored a run and ran the score to 4-2.

The O’s managed to get one more back on Mancini’s RBI-single in the seventh, but that was all she wrote. As I said, the Birds need to get themselves back on track, and quick. The will to do it is definitely there, and neither that nor the effort should never be questioned. However I think there are some very tired bats in the lineup right now; bats that have noble intentions to do good mind you, but bats that are just tired.

The series continues tonight at Rogers Center. Dylan Bundy gets the start for the O’s, and he’ll be opposed by Joe Biagini. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.

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