Even when things are actually going well for the Baltimore Orioles, all it takes it one mental lapse to send things into a tailspin. This time it was an ever-so-slight mental error by Tim Beckham at third base with the O’s and Anaheim tied at two. And that set off a sequence of events whereby Anaheim ran away with the game.
Many of these columns seem to run similarly – you can just change the names. In this case, it was Andrew Cashner turning in a quality start and having nothing to show for it. Cashner’s line: 6.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 4 K. Now I will say this; it seems that you can pencil almost any Orioles starter in for six innings each game, in what ends up being a quality start. You have to wonder if perhaps some pressure might be taken off the bullpen if starters pitched seven innings…?
The Orioles led this game most of the way. Manny Machado smacked an RBI-single in the first inning. However at that point it was Anaheim committing an error, and the Orioles taking advantage – for once. Jones advanced to third on an Upton error, and he later scored on a Valencia RBI-single.
However those were the only runs that the O’s could muster. And in the first inning at that. Overall, they went 1-for-5 with runners in scoring position, and left seven on base. If even one of those seven came around to score, perhaps the game plays out differently.
Anaheim would put a run across in the fourth in a Simmons RBI-single. And on we played with the Orioles holding a one-run lead until Anaheim put some runners on base in the eighth. Going back to Beckham’s mistake, it’s important to note that the O’s had already surrendered the lead before that. Pujols’ RBI-single tied the game at two. But in theory…
…they actually pitched out of the jam – before they didn’t, that is. With one out and the bases loaded, Young grounded to Beckham at third. He stepped on the bag for the second out of the inning. Then he seemed to get confused, and he hesitated for just a second. Just one short second…before he threw across the diamond. However Young was ruled safe by a hair, allowing a run to score and giving Anaheim a 3-2 lead. They would later put three more across in the inning, taking home a 6-2 win.
It’s tough to say what happened in that moment, however Beckham was definitely confused. I don’t want to be too hard on him, because if you look back to when he joined the team last year he’s done more good than ill as an Oriole. Furthermore he’s not playing his regular position of shortstop – Manny Machado is. However without that small hesitation, Young’s out at first base, the inning’s over, and the game remains tied.
Up to that point, this was a good game for the Orioles for the most part. Yet that one slight mistake cost them the game. But I’ll take it a step further; this game was lost back in December when the Orioles decided to acquiesce to Manny Machado and allow him to play shortstop, moving Beckham to third.
The O’s will attempt to get one game out of three tomorrow afternoon at Camden Yards. Kevin Gausman gets the start for the Birds, and he’ll be opposed by Deck McGuire of Anaheim. Game time is set for just after 1 PM.