Chris Davis‘ struggles for the Baltimore Orioles have been well-documented. That seemed to end this afternoon as Davis finally got himself on the board with a base hit. And not just any base hit, a two-RBI single. In total, Davis drove in four runs and recorded three hits this afternoon, much to the delight of starter Andrew Cashner. Cashner’s line: 5.0 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 3 BB, 2 K.
That aforementioned two-RBI single came right off the bat in the first inning. The Birds had two on and one out, and Davis clubbed the second pitch he saw into right field, scoring two. The Orioles’ bench flooded onto the field and applauded, and Davis appeared to be trying not to laugh. To their credit, the Fenway crowd applauded for Davis.
But they applauded more in the third inning when Vasquez smacked a two-run homer, tying the game at two. And that moment represented a crossroads for the Orioles. It would have been easy to fold up and assume that the defending champions would make quick meat of them from then on out. Granted Boston’s spotty play didn’t allow that to happen, but neither did the Orioles’ mindset. And that mindset was a winning one today.
The O’s would take the lead back two innings later, once again off the bat of Chris Davis. He smacked an RBI-double, and the O’s held a 3-2 lead. They would extend that lead to 4-2 one inning later in the sixth on Renato Nunez‘s RBI-single. Rio Ruiz would add an RBI-single, and the O’s led 7-2.
And the interesting thing about that is that the ball hit off of several Boston players. That happened several times this afternoon, putting Orioles on base on what should have been outs. It looked like the way games have spiraled out of control for the Orioles at times. Except today it worked in their favor.
Boston put a couple on in the last of the sixth, however the Birds induced a run-scoring double-play, which cut the lead to 7-3. However that’s a win for the defense in a sense. When you’re up by five you’ll trade one run for two outs. The O’s would add an additional run on an error in the seventh, and Nunez would ground into a force out which scored a run. The O’s took a 9-3 lead, and appeared to be cruising.
Boston would threaten once more, however. Vasquez’s two-RBI double cut the lead to 9-5. But this was the Orioles’ day, as well as that of Chris Davis. No Boston rally was going to spoil that.
And as I said above, this was a very sloppy game by the Boston Red Sox. Orioles fans know all too well how that feels, although the Orioles will take any advantages that are given to them. Opponents certainly don’t waste their time taking liberties with the O’s when they are able.
And the fact that Davis won’t have to be hounded and/or hound himself due to that hitless streak will hopefully smooth things out for the entire team. When you set a new MLB record for futility, in general it takes on a life of it’s own. This was no exception. And it’s not as if Davis got his hit and recorded outs the rest of the day. He had three hits and four RBI on the day!