Results tagged ‘ Chris Davis ’

Baltimore Orioles: Is Chris Davis starting to return to form?

Baltimore Orioles’ first baseman Chris Davis is hitting .263 in his past seven games. That might sound lackluster for a guy who led the league in homers just a few short years ago, but this is Davis about whom we’re talking – his struggles have been well-documented. Certainly Orioles’ starter John Means appreciates his effort this afternoon – especially after a two hour and 45 minute rain delay to even get the game started. Means’ line: 6.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 3 BB, 4 K.

For the record, Means is a keeper for the Orioles in the midst of this rebuild. Granted he’s still inexperienced, however speaking for myself I’m seeing something in him that’s an intangible and hard to find. He has grit, and he doesn’t give in. He’s not afraid to have the ball put in play, which is a quality Orioles fans haven’t seen in a young starter for some time. If he plays his cards right, Means could be the organization’s next great pitcher.

Chris Davis got the Birds started this afternoon with a solo homer in the second inning. Later in the inning Stevie Wilkerson followed suit, and the Birds held a 2-1 lead. The only mistake that Means made was in the third, as Trout smacked a solo homer to cut the Orioles’ lead to 2-1. However Trout is a once in a generation talent, so you all but give him a pass on that. However as I said, Means isn’t afraid to have the ball put in play. His attitude is I’m going to give you everything I have; if you beat me, you beat me.

The good news was that the Orioles as a team didn’t allow that solo home run to beat them. I put it like that because while the O’s never trailed in this game, sometimes something like that can swing a game. The Birds had the intestinal fortitude not to let that happen. They got a two-run homer from Dwight Smith Jr. in the last of the third, and a two-run shot from Pedro Severino in the sixth. This capped off a 5-1 Orioles’ win, salvaging two victories on a tough home stand.

It is noteworthy that Chris Davis is starting to get his stroke back. The fact that he fell as far as he did is still tough to explain. But somehow he seems to be coming out of that elongated slump, which lasted over several seasons. A lot least for now, it appears that’s the case.

I’m not sure that it’s feasible to think that Davis could ever be the feared hitter he was a few years ago once again. Anything’s possible, however that comment has as much to do with age as anything else. But Davis hit cleanup this afternoon for the first time in 2019, and as I said he’s trending upwards. If he can simply be a solid hitter who’s capable of hitting-for-power here and there, that would help the Birds’ offense leaps and bounds.

The O’s now head out on the road and will open a three-game set against New York in Yankee Stadium tomorrow evening. David Hess gets the start for the Orioles, and he’ll be opposed by New York’s Jonathan Loaisiga. Game time is set for just after 6:30 PM.

Baltimore Orioles: Fifth inning sinks the Birds

The Baltimore Orioles were unable to stay out of the big inning last night. They were already trailing the Anaheim Angels, but the fifth inning chased starter Dan Straily, and cemented Anaheim’s spot in the driver’s seat in this game. Straily’s line: 4.1 IP, 5 H, 6 R, 2 BB, 4 K.

Straily was throwing strikes last night. And that in essence was the problem. His pitches were coming in high and square down the middle. This is why it’s so important to employ late movement in the strike zone on your pitches. If they have little pizzazz, they’re going to fly a long way.

Things looked good at first, however. Trey Mancini smacked a solo homer in the first inning, and the O’s led 1-0. However Calhoun’s RBI-triple in the second inning tied the game at one. The O’s would never lead again in the game.

One inning later Trout smacked a two-run homer, and Anaheim led 3-1. But the Orioles tried to battle back an inning later in the fourth. Chris Davis dumped an RBI-single into left field, cutting the lead to 3-2. But that was as close as the Birds would get.

Anaheim our five runs on the board in the fifth inning. Staying out of the big inning is a major theme in MLB. The O’s couldn’t do it last night, and Anaheim feasted on what they left behind. A big part of that rally came with two outs, which is another area in which we’ve seen the Orioles struggle. It’s unclear why that is, but obviously opponents are seeing something with two outs.

The seventh inning brought a long rain delay. However after the delay the Orioles did manage one more run – on a solo homer by Davis. After such a bad start at the plate, Davis is starting to come on. His average is currently .193, which means he’s creeping towards the Mendoza Line. It sounds like I’m saying that sarcastically, but I’m not. First off what I said was factually true. But for a guy that started the season so poorly, that’s a feat. You have to start somewhere.

The series continues today at Camden Yards. Dylan Bundy. He’ll be opposed by Anaheim’s Matt Harvey. Game time is set for just after 4 PM.

Baltimore Orioles: Opponents get fat on your negligence

The Baltimore Orioles dropped the nightcap of a twin bill last night in Chicago in walk off fashion. Andrew Cashner got the start, and became only the most recent Orioles’ starter to not go deep in a game. Cashner’s line: 4.0 IP, 6 H, 5 R (earned), 2 BB, 8 K.

The O’s had the lead at various points in this game, including early on. Dwight Smith Jr’s RBI-single in the first gave the Birds a 1-0 lead. One inning later however, Chicago would tie the game thanks in part to Oriole negligence. Catcher Austin Wynns threw to second base after a strikeout with two outs (when all he had to do was make the play at first base), allowing a base runner to go to third. Wynns apparently forgot how many outs there were. That led to an RBI-single by Engel, tying the game at two.

Abreu’s solo homer one inning later gave Chicago a 2-1 lead. However the O’s would take the lead right back in the fourth inning on Stevie Wilkerson‘s three-run homer. That should have been kind of a big blow in the game, however the O’s gave the lead right back in the bottom of the inning. Chicago loaded the bases with two outs following a triple and two walks. That brought Chicago’s heavy hitter (Abreu) to the plate, and he sent a bases-clearing single into center.

In reality, the game only should have been tied. However Joey Rickard seemingly took his time in getting the ball back in from center field. In fact, Stevie Wilkerson did the same in getting the ball over to first base on Engel’s second inning infield RBI-single. He took his time getting the ball to first base, and Engel best the throw out. Keep that in mind.

A sixth inning homer by Anthony Santander and a seventh inning fielder’s choice-RBI by Chris Davis however gave the Orioles the lead back at 6-5. However one-run leads are tough to protect in the ninth inning. Especially in the last of the ninth, when you lead off the inning with a walk. Alonso’s two-RBI single with the bases loaded lifted Chicago to victory.

It’s always easy to point to one or two things and say “all things being the same, things would have been different if not for this.” But that’s an unfair thing to say given that you can’t simply assume that all things would be the same. Furthermore it’s always a team effort – win or lose.

That aside, we saw Stevie Wilkerson taking his time getting the ball to first base in the second, resulting in a run. Later in the game we saw Joey Rickard doing the same in getting the ball back in from centerfield. That allowed a third run to score (from first), giving Chicago the lead.

In both instances the O’s overcame the Chicago lead. However the defense needs to tighten up in those situations. Chicago was literally gifted two runs on those two plays. Other teams aren’t letting the Orioles off the hook – they just aren’t. In fact, they’re getting fat on the Orioles’ negligence at times.

The Birds now come home after an off day today to open up a three-game set with Tampa starting tomorrow at Camden Yards. Dan Straily gets the fall for the O’s, and he’ll be opposed by Tampa’s Tyler Glasnow. Game time is set for 7 PM tomorrow night.

Baltimore Orioles: Long ball bombs Birds away again

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.

The series continues tonight at Guaranteed Rate Field. Andrew Cashner gets the call for the Birds, and he’ll be opposed by Chicago’s Ivan Nova. Game time is set for just after 8 PM.

Baltimore Orioles swept in Minnesota

The Baltimore Orioles found themselves not only swept in Minnesota this weekend, but they were swept by Minnesota in the season series. It’s interesting how it seems that no matter what the O’s did, Minnesota wasn’t going to be stopped. Dylan Bundy got the start for the Orioles, and while he gave up all four of the Birds’ runs he also in theory put the O’s in a spot to win. Bundy’s line: 5.0 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 3 BB, 8 K.

Bundy gave up a solo homer to Kepler in the first – because of course he did. The Orioles continue to give up homers, especially to Minnesota. He gave up another one to Buxton’s in the third, and the Orioles trailed 2-0.

Later in that third inning Gonzalez blooped a single into shallow center. That scored an additional two runs, giving Minnesota a 4-0 lead. In that case it’s either a homer of a softly hit ball that drops. Either way the Orioles lose out.

Chris Davis smacked a solo homer in the seventh for the Orioles, cutting the lead and the final score to 4-1. Again however, the issue continues to be the number of home runs Oriole pitching is giving up. I’m not sure what to say, as opposing teams are just feasting on Oriole pitching. How that stops is beyond me.

The Oriole bullpen did pitch four scoreless innings yesterday, which was a big bright spot. Again, the O’s were swept in the season series with Minnesota, 6-0. So they aren’t upset that they won’t see Minnesota again until spring training next year.

The Orioles now head to Chicago to open a three-game set with the ChiSox at Guaranteed Rate Field. John Means gets the start for the Birds, and he’ll be opposed by Chicago’s Manny Banuelos. Game time is set for just after 8 PM.

Baltimore Orioles to ChiSox: Turnabout is fair play

Andrew Cashner turned in one of the better starts for the Baltimore Orioles this far in 2019. However the O’s could have gotten away with “just an okay” start this evening, as their bats finally came alive. But nevertheless, Cashner pitched a good game. Cashner’s line:

The ChiSox, you’ll remember, took the Orioles to the woodshed last night. However the O’s has a certain look in their eye out of the gate tonight. You felt that they were ready to break out, and ready to make someone lay for their struggles of late. That “someone” was the Chicago White Sox.

Chris Davis singled up the middle in the on second inning with Joey Rickard already on first base. Rickard was able to score on an errant throw, and the O’s took a 1-0 lead. For what it’s worth, while that’s a run-scoring single it isn’t an RBI for Davis – if you’re keeping score at home.

Little did we know at that moment that the Orioles were off to the races. Renato Nunez would smack a two-run homer in the third to extend the lead to 4-0. Later in the inning none other than Chris Davis would smack his first Camden Yards home run of the year – this of the two-run variety.

But the O’s wanted more. After all, tonight was all about purging the memory of the past few games, and showing the ChiSox that turnabout was in fact fair play. They weren’t the only team who could pile runs on against a hapless opponent. And Dwight Smith Jr. drove that point home with a three-rum homer in the fourth. As did Joey Rickard, who smacked a two-run shot later in the inning.

Chicago would net a token run on a sixth inning RBI-single by Anderson. But this was the Orioles’ night. The Birds has really taken it on the chin the past few games – especially last night and Saturday night (game two of the doubleheader). But tonight they flipped the script and really took it to Chicago.

And for a group of young guys, that’s good to see. This isn’t to say that they won this game and it’s going to be smooth sailing the rest of the way. It may be for all I know. But the Birds served notice this evening that they’ll only take so much.

The series concludes tomorrow night at Camden Yards. John Means gets the start for the O’s, and he’ll be opposed by Chicago’s Ervin Santana. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.

Baltimore Orioles: A character win

Baltimore Orioles’ manager Brandon Hyde called this evening’s 6-5 win in Tampa a heart attack type of game. He also called it a character win. It didn’t need to go to Extra Innings, as Andrew Cashner pitched well enough to win. The Birds just couldn’t get the job done in nine. Cashner’s line: 5.0 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 6 K.

One of those runs came in the first inning ON AN RBI-single by Pham. However Renato Nunez got the Orioles on the board in the third with an RBI-single of his own. Later in the inning Joey Rickard would leg out an infield hit, allowing another run to score and giving the Orioles the lead.

However Tampa would immediately tie the game back up in the last of the third on a solo homer by Phan. That said, last night belonged to the O’s. It may have taken extra time, but it belonged to the Orioles. The O’s took the lead back in the fourth on Pedro Severino‘s solo home run.

And the Birds extended their lead from there. Richie Martin‘s RBI-single in the seventh Gabe them a 4-2 lead (Martin was tagged out on the base paths). Dwight Smith Jr.’s sac fly-RBI in the eighth gave the Birds a 5-2 lead, which one would have thought was safe.

But Tampa put two runs on the board in the last of the eighth on Zunino’s two-RBI double. One-run leads in the last of the ninth are the worst types of leads to have. Especially against a team like Tampa that utterly refuses to quit. Sure enough, Garcia smacked a solo homer in the ninth, sending the game to extra innings.

Chris Davis smacked a two-out single in the 11th. However the key play of the game was Davis going from first-to-third on Ruiz’s subsequent single. As beleaguered as Davis has been, he’s starting to find ways to contribute. That bit of good base running all but won the game for the O’s.

Especially seeing that Joey Rickard would later double Rickard home, giving the Birds a 6-5 lead – which turned into a 6-5 victory. It’s often things that don’t show up on the line score that can be the difference between winning and losing. Chris Davis’ clutch base running in the eleventh inning last night is a prime example.

The O’s now head home to open up a three game series with Minnesota tomorrow night at Camden Yards (weather permitting). Alex Cobb will come off the DL and makes the start for the Orioles, and he’ll be opposed by Minnesota’s Jose Berrios. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.

Baltimore Orioles, Chris Davis spoil Patriot’s Day in Boston

Today is Patriot’s Day throughout New England, and the Baltimore Orioles were simply the opponent. The Boston Red Sox always play a special 11 AM home game on this holiday, and again the Orioles were supposed to just be the opponent. Dan Straily got the start, and effectively dominated Boston – on their day, no less. Straily’s line: 5.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 2 K.

This was the second year in a row that the Orioles were scheduled to be the opponent on Patriot’s Day in Boston, although last year’s game was rained out and rescheduled. I suspect that Boston is wishing that the same had happened today. On their holiday and in front of their fans, they were taken to task by the Birds.

The Orioles got on the board early on an RBI-single by Renato Nunez in the second inning. And in reality, they never looked back. The fifth inning was where the big damage was done however, as the O’s put up three runs and busted the game wide open. Jonathan Villar smacked an RBI-single of his own, and Dwight Smith Jr.’s two-run homer gave the Orioles a 4-0 lead.

Boston’s lone run on the morning/afternoon came in the last of the fifth on a controversial play in which Pearce grounded into a fielder’s choice, allowing a run to score. However Orioles’ manager Brandon Hyde challenged the play, claiming that a Boston runner had overshot the base. While replays were inconclusive, Hyde had a decent argument. The problem was that he continued to argue after the play was upheld by instant replay – earning him his first ejection as a big league manager.

So on a very early day, Hyde was sent for his first early shower. But it didn’t make the Orioles fold by any means. If anything, it emboldened them. In the finale of a series in which Chris Davis got his first hit of the season, he also recorded his first homer of the year. This of the two-run variety in the top of the eighth. One inning later Dwight Smith would add a two-RBI double, giving the O’s an 8-1 victory.

Make no mistake that while this goes down as a series split, it might as well be a series win for the Orioles. There are very few circumstances in which a rebuilding team would expect to do anything less than lose or get swept in a series by the defending World Series champions. Especially at their place, and with the series finale being on a special holiday (to the home team).

Perhaps more importantly, Chris Davis broke out this weekend in Boston. Granted Boston’s pitching hasn’t been the greatest, and this weekend was no exception. But if Davis can somehow use this series as a launching point to becoming some sort of force on offense once again, the Orioles will be in great shape.

The O’s now head south to Tampa for a three-game set at Tropicana Field starting tomorrow. Dylan Bundy gets the start for the Orioles, and he’ll be opposed by Tampa’s Tyler Glasnow. Game time is set for just after 7 PM tomorrow night.

Baltimore Orioles: Chris Davis back with a vengeance as Birds defeat Boston

Chris Davis‘ struggles for the Baltimore Orioles have been well-documented. That seemed to end this afternoon as Davis finally got himself on the board with a base hit. And not just any base hit, a two-RBI single. In total, Davis drove in four runs and recorded three hits this afternoon, much to the delight of starter Andrew Cashner. Cashner’s line: 5.0 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 3 BB, 2 K.

That aforementioned two-RBI single came right off the bat in the first inning. The Birds had two on and one out, and Davis clubbed the second pitch he saw into right field, scoring two. The Orioles’ bench flooded onto the field and applauded, and Davis appeared to be trying not to laugh. To their credit, the Fenway crowd applauded for Davis.

But they applauded more in the third inning when Vasquez smacked a two-run homer, tying the game at two. And that moment represented a crossroads for the Orioles. It would have been easy to fold up and assume that the defending champions would make quick meat of them from then on out. Granted Boston’s spotty play didn’t allow that to happen, but neither did the Orioles’ mindset. And that mindset was a winning one today.

The O’s would take the lead back two innings later, once again off the bat of Chris Davis. He smacked an RBI-double, and the O’s held a 3-2 lead. They would extend that lead to 4-2 one inning later in the sixth on Renato Nunez‘s RBI-single. Rio Ruiz would add an RBI-single, and the O’s led 7-2.

And the interesting thing about that is that the ball hit off of several Boston players. That happened several times this afternoon, putting Orioles on base on what should have been outs. It looked like the way games have spiraled out of control for the Orioles at times. Except today it worked in their favor.

Boston put a couple on in the last of the sixth, however the Birds induced a run-scoring double-play, which cut the lead to 7-3. However that’s a win for the defense in a sense. When you’re up by five you’ll trade one run for two outs. The O’s would add an additional run on an error in the seventh, and Nunez would ground into a force out which scored a run. The O’s took a 9-3 lead, and appeared to be cruising.

Boston would threaten once more, however. Vasquez’s two-RBI double cut the lead to 9-5. But this was the Orioles’ day, as well as that of Chris Davis. No Boston rally was going to spoil that.

And as I said above, this was a very sloppy game by the Boston Red Sox. Orioles fans know all too well how that feels, although the Orioles will take any advantages that are given to them. Opponents certainly don’t waste their time taking liberties with the O’s when they are able.

And the fact that Davis won’t have to be hounded and/or hound himself due to that hitless streak will hopefully smooth things out for the entire team. When you set a new MLB record for futility, in general it takes on a life of it’s own. This was no exception. And it’s not as if Davis got his hit and recorded outs the rest of the day. He had three hits and four RBI on the day!

The series continues tomorrow from Fenway Park. John Means gets the start for the Orioles, and he’ll be opposed by Boston’s David Price. Game time is set for just after 1 PM.

Baltimore Orioles: Using position players as pitchers could afford to cease

The Baltimore Orioles used infielder Hanser Alberto as a relief pitcher yesterday. It’s understandable why; the game was out of control, and manager Brandon Hyde wanted to save his bullpen. However whether or not that’s a good idea in general is another story.

Again, I understand the reasoning behind the move. In fact, Hyde indicated after the game that Alberto might have saved the team from having to make a roster move when asked if that was a possibility:

I definitely was thinking that during the game. But then Hanser picked us up, so it’s something we’re going to discuss after this.

Quote courtesy of Roch Kubatko, MASNsports

There’s something to be said for that. It’s also a trend that we’re seeing across the big leagues. Heck, Tampa sometimes uses their pitchers in the field and then swaps them onto the mound. And I’m submitting that perhaps some of these practices need to stop.

Nobody uses a position player as a pitcher in a close game. It’s generally done in the manner that Brandon Hyde did it yes

terday; an out-of-control game so as to save a reliever. But are we really doing a service to the game itself when pulling a stunt like that? Are we really giving people what they paid good money to see?

As bad as it was seeing the Oriole bullpen get lit up time after time yesterday, that beat seeing Alberto messing himself on the mound. And I say that in the sense that Alberto isn’t a pitcher. He doesn’t have the training and practice that pitchers usually have. Never mind the fact that someone could get hurt.

I just feel that there’s a better way to do things than using a position player. However it’s not something that I think should be against the rules. I would submit that the manner in which the Orioles used Chris Davis as a pitcher is a totally different story. If a team’s in extra innings and they’re out of pitchers, obviously someone has to come in. But I’d like to see managers stay away from that in a game such as a blowout.

So let’s put it this way; it should be legal. There should be no reason as per the rules of the game why a position player should be barred from pitching. But it’s something from which I wish managers would stay away unless it’s absolutely necessary.

%d bloggers like this: