Chris Davis only had one hit this afternoon for the Baltimore Orioles in Atlanta. However it was a big one, a bases-clearing double with the bases loaded. Davis of course was out of the lineup for eight games, only returning last night. But he does seem to be taking a different approach at the plate, being much more patient and taking what the defense gives him. It just so happens that in that span the defense has given him a homer and the aforementioned bases-clearing double.
The O’s got another quality start today, this time from Dylan Bundy. Bundy’s line: 6.1 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 2 BB, 8 K. I’m not sure that there’s been any pitcher for the Orioles in recent years who’s been as consistent as Bundy’s been through the first half of the season to this point. He had a few real clunkers (the Kansas City game comes to mind), but for the most part he’s been consistently solid.
The Orioles caught a break today, as Atlanta’s starter Teheran did not have a good day. He loaded the bases before even recording an out, bringing Mark Trumbo to the plate. Trumbo sent a high drive to right center, which carried all the way over the wall and out of the ballpark, giving the Orioles a 4-0 lead. Atlanta would get one back on a Markakis RBI-single, and before the crowd had even settled in the Birds led 4-1.
Bundy actually led off the fifth inning with a seeing-eye single, the first hit of his career. One thing led to another, and the Birds had the bases loaded again with Davis coming to bat. And Davis’ aforementioned bases-clearing double broke the game open at 7-1.
But keep in mind, Atlanta’s a division-leading team. It was natural that they were going to make a run at things. Albies’ RBI-single in the fifth cut the Orioles’ lead to 7-2, which was the score when the rains came. The delay lasted twenty minutes, after which Markakis once again made the Orioles regret letting him walk with a two-RBI double. Mychal Givens would also make an errant pickoff throw to first in the last of the eighth which plated a run, but the Orioles closed things down after that.
This was only the second series that Atlanta had lost at home this year, as the Orioles took the first two games. However the story of the game to me is Davis’ resurgence. Again, it’s only two games. But he’s been much better and much more patient at the plate. That’s not to say that he isn’t going to strike out, because that’s the type of player that he is. But if his bat could get back on track just a bit along with Mark Trumbo heating up, the Orioles could at least be more competitive moving forward.
The series concludes tomorrow in Atlanta as the O’s go for the sweep. David Hess gets the call for the Birds, and he’ll be opposed by Atlanta’s Brandon McCarthy. Game time is set for just after 1:30 PM.