Baltimore Orioles fans seemed to almost be waiting for the shoe to drop in tonight’s gAme against Toronto. Starter John Means May have given up a first inning home run (to the game’s first hitter), but he ended up putting the O’s in a spot to win the game. And that’s the goal for any starting pitcher. Means’ line: 5.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 3 BB, 7 K.
Means had a semi-tough first inning, giving up a solo homer to Sogard, and ultimately throwing 30 pitches. However that merely affected Means’ ability to pitch deep into the game. The Orioles’ pen was fairly rested after limited use on Sunday, and a day off yesterday.
However the fact is that Means pitched out of it. And instead of hanging his head, he got stronger. As did the rest of the team.
The Birds evened things up in the last of the third on Trey Mancini‘s RBI-double. Later in the inning Chance Sisco‘s bloop RBI-double down the left field line gave the O’s the lead. One inning later they extended the lead to 3-1 on yet another RBI-double, this one by Anthony Santander.
The O’s couldn’t push any further runs across until later, however Toronto did make a push late in the game. Grichuk sent a bloop towards shallow right field with two outs and a runner on first. By virtue of the fact that there were two outs, the runner was able to score and cut the Orioles’ lead to 3-2.
That was a moment in the game when the O’s could have become unglued. But they didn’t. They stood pat and actually got stronger in a sense by extending their lead. Jonathan Villar‘s RBI-double extended the lead to 4-2.
And I think that’s important. Often times it’s been a small thing such as a late run that’s set the Orioles off, and the opponent has been able to come back. Not tonight. The Birds and their ‘pen closed the door, and the Orioles ended up with a win in game one of three against Toronto.