The Baltimore Orioles gave starter Andrew Cashner a great deal of run support this afternoon in Lakeland against Detroit. At first however, it appeared to be similar to a great deal of Cashner’s starts with the Orioles last year. One bad pitch and no run support. But that changed eventually – and it did so in a fast and furious manner. Cashner’s line: 5.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 5 K.
Cashner gave up a solo homer in the first inning to Castellanos, the second batter of the game. And that was it in terms of runs surrendered by Cashner. He buckled down and pitched to a dazzling start. In fact, it could well have been the best outing by an Oriole starter thus far in the spring. Cashner on his outing:
I thought it kind of finally all came together today. I thought I slowed my pace down a little bit. Thought the biggest thing was made an adjustment out of the bullpen, keeping my chin quiet.
Quote courtesy of Roch Kubatko, MASNsports
I thought I spun the ball a lot better today. Kind of made some tweaks with my curveball. Kind of got a little late start on the curveball. Just didn’t feel right in the beginning. Hadn’t thrown it much and I thought today was big progress with that.
Last season Cashner had several starts where he had no run support, as I said above. Through four innings, it appeared that this one might be similar. Then the donnybrook that was the fifth inning happened.
The Orioles managed to load the bases with one down in the fifth. Jonathan Villar then smacked a bases-clearing double, giving the O’s a 3-1 lead. Trey Mancini would tack on another run with an RBI-triple, and the Birds led 4-1.
The Orioles would also get an RBI-single from Ryan Mountcastle, and a sac fly-RBI by Joey Rickard. This all in the fifth, and it left the Orioles and Cashner with a 6-1 lead. Mancini had a good day as well, on his 27th birthday. Mancini went 1-for-3 with a walk.
The Orioles kept the pressure on in the later innings. Dwight Smith smacked a two-run homer in the seventh to run the Birds’ lead to 8-1. Zach Vincej would add an RBI-single later in the inning, giving them a 9-1 lead. That Vincej RBI-single also came on the heels of a Detroit fielding error which extended the inning.
Another mark of last year’s Orioles’ team was that they often allowed teams off the hook when they made mistakes. Thus far in the spring, that hasn’t been the case. The Birds were able to tack on several more late runs, taking this game 14-1. One of the more runaway victories if you will this spring – hence the term donnybrook.
The Orioles return home to Ed Smith Stadium tomorrow as Minnesota comes to Sarasota for what feels like the 100th time this spring. Dylan Bundy gets the start for the Birds, and he’ll be opposed by Minnesota’s Martin Perez. Game time is set for just after 1 PM.