John Means pitches a halfway decent game last night for the Baltimore Orioles. He didn’t pitch a quality start, but he put the O’s in a position to win. However it was once again the long ball which doomed the Orioles. Although not necessarily in abundance last night, the Birds surrendered homers once again. Means’ line: 5.0 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 1 BB, 2 K.
The ChiSox took a 2-0 lead in the second inning on a two-run homer by Alonso. However Pedro Severino cut that lead in half one inning later with a solo shot. But the big blow came in the bottom of that third inning, when Anderson smacked Chicago another two-run homer, giving them a 4-1 lead.
The Birds got to within 4-2 on Chris Davis‘ RBI-single. However Davis was thrown out on the base paths, which made it tough to start a real rally. The O’s would walk in a run in the seventh, and Davis would add an additional RBI-single in the eighth. And the O’s never made it closer than that, and they dropped a 5-3 decision on the south side of Chicago.
Obviously the homers continue to be a problem. Heck, Anderson’s two-run homer was literally the difference. But the Orioles also left a decent number of runners in scoring position as well. They were 2-for-9 in the game when hitting with runners in scoring position. They also left the bases loaded in the fourth inning.
You can’t do those types of things if you consistently want to win games at the big league level. You have to take advantage of the opportunities with which you are presented , and limit the opportunities that you give to the other team. The Orioles are doing neither.
In effect, the O’s are letting other teams off the hook by leaving the bases loaded so often. And as we saw last year, opposing teams aren’t returning the favor per se. And why would they? When opportunities as such arise, you have to take advantage.