The Baltimore Orioles had a shot to snap their losing steak this afternoon. It just didn’t happen. Jorge Lopez was actually a bright spot for the Birds, pitching six really solid innings. Lopez’s line: 6.0 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 7 K.
Lopez’s lone run surrendered was in the third inning on a force out. And that was it. The O’s allowed him to tire just a bit, and when the team needed him to get out of the sixth inning he was able to do so. Pitching tired is “a thing,” and Lopez was forced to do it today. And he pitched through.
Ryan Mountcastle’s solo homer in the last of the fifth tied the game at one. Keep in mind, the Orioles really battled in this game. That doesn’t mean anything when you’ve lost 13 straight and are just trying to snap the streak, but they battled hard.
One thing that’s different from a week ago when they played Minnesota is that their pitching is better. Starting pitching seems to have gotten a bit of a grip, and that’s streamlined the bullpen just a little.
The game went to extra innings, which of course meant that a runner started every inning at second base. Minnesota’s runner was Refsnyder, and after moving to third he scored on a wild pitch. Of course it was going to be a fluky play like that which would send the Orioles to defeat once again. To add insult to injury, Polanco added a solo homer, giving Minnesota a 3-1 lead.
But again, the Orioles fought. With a runner on second, DJ Stewart’s RBI-double cut the lead to 3-2. The Birds appeared poised to at least tie the game, but Minnesota pitched out of it, sending the Birds down to defeat once again, 3-2.
The series continues tomorrow night at Camden Yards. Bruce Zimmermann gets the start for the Birds, and he’ll be opposed by Minnesota’s Michael Pineda. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.