No matter how you spin things, the Baltimore Orioles got a decent start this afternoon out of Dylan Bundy. He put the Orioles in a spot to win the game, and as I’ve said many times that’s all you can ask of a starter. Bundy’s line: 6.0 IP, 7 H, 4 R (two earned), 1 BB, 4 K.
The Orioles in theory should have sent Minnesota down 1-2-3 in the first. Polanco led off the game, and a few seconds later had induced a pop up to left field. Routine play, right? Not so much.
Dwight Smith Jr dropped the ball. Just a lazy routine pop up, and he dropped it. Mistakes do happen, and while Smith has given the team a shot in the arm since getting here, that error allowed a runner to get to third base. Astudillo proceeded to turn in an RBI-double, and Cron an RBI-single.
Those two runs while charged to Bundy, were unearned. It’s tough for a starting pitcher to know he did almost everything right, but still got charged with two runs. It’s usually more than just one thing which tells the overall game story, but that one blip on the radar loomed large all afternoon.
Cave would smack an RBI-single in the third to give Minnesota a 3-0 lead. However the Birds has a run in them. Dwight Smith would take those two unearned runs back with a two-RBI single. That cut the Minnesota lead to 3-2 l, however they tacked on an additional run of n the fourth on a sac fly-RBI by Astudillo.
Again, it’s more than just one moment which tells the story of a game. The Orioles would load the bases in the last of the eighth, attempting to make a run at taking the lead or tying. But Minnesota pitched their way out of that jam, not allowing the Orioles to score even one additional run that inning.
However the Orioles did mount a rally in the last of the ninth. With runners at the corners and two outs, Jonathan Villar‘s RBI-double cut the lead to 4-3. Following an intentional walk, the Orioles has the bases loaded, and bought up Pedro Severino as a pinch hitter.
Severino worked the count to 3-0. He then got a fastball on the fourth pitch, and took a slight step towards first base. Ironically, Oriole pitchers had been trying to get that pitch location called a strike all day long – and with no luck at that. However Minnesota got the call, and Severino would later pop out to end the game.
Again, one thing doesn’t make or break the ballgame. But the Dwight Smith Jr error, and that ball call on the 3-0 pitch in the ninth sticks out. The pitch was a good inch-and-a-half off the plate. It has to be frustrating from the Orioles’ perspective however, as they had been throwing to that location all afternoon. And the only time it was called a strike was that final time with the Orioles at the plate. Dwight Smith Jr had to leave the game after coming up lame on the base paths, and the Orioles will update his status as soon as they are able.
The Orioles will open up a series with the Chicago White Sox tomorrow evening at Camden Yards. David Hess gets the start for the Orioles, and he’ll be opposed by Chicago’s Manny Banuelos. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.