The Baltimore Orioles got a good outing last night out of Dylan Bundy in Cleveland. Remember folks, it begins and ends with starting pitching. While Bundy came one out shy of a quality start last night, he did put the O’s in a spot to win. That’s all you can ask of a starting pitcher. Bundy’a line: 5.2 IP, 3 H, 1 R (0 earned), 3 BB, 7 K.
Bundy was cruising along in this game until he had one out in the second inning. Ramirez reached base on an error by second baseman Jonathan Villar; it was a routine ground ball, which simply went between the wickets. Ramirez would then steal second, and score on Bauers’ run-scoring single. (Because of the error that’s not an RBI-single – the run was unearned.)
That’s the type of play that’s often snowballed on the Orioles this year (and last). However Bundy and the Birds buckled down and refused to allow that one mishap to define who they were in this game. And that’s kind of a big deal. First off they got out of the inning without further damage, and that ended up being the only run the Birds surrendered in the entire game. They put that error behind them and moved on.
And they weren’t trailing for long. Jonathan Villar, who committed the aforementioned error, smacked a three-run homer one inning later in the top of the third. Again, this is a good sign – and not just for the obvious. It showed that Villar himself didn’t let that one mistake define him in this game. Look at it this way; his error led to a run being surrendered. He then directly drove in three runs. That’s a net gain of two!
Stevie Wilkerson‘s solo home run in the fourth extended the Orioles’ lead to 4-1. And the game remained at that score for almost the rest of the way. Wilkerson came up again in the eighth, and smacked an RBI-single to the gap in right center. Wilkerson was later thrown out at second as he tried to advance to second base (on a play that was challenged by Cleveland). However the damage always done, and the O’s had an insurance run…
…an insurance run they in essence didn’t need, however. Oriole pitching was superb last night. And that began with Dylan Bundy. He set the tone, and the bats picked him up also. However had the O’s hung their head after that error early in the game, I suspect things would have ended quite differently.
The series continues this afternoon at Progressive Field. John Means gets the start for the Orioles, and he’ll be opposed by Cleveland’s Adam Plutko. Game time is set for just after 4 PM.