Results tagged ‘ Trey Mancini ’

Baltimore Orioles victimizing themselves by giving up homers

Baltimore Orioles’ fans got their first dose of starting pitcher Dan Straily this evening. And I suspect that many of them came always wondering why the organization signed him. However keep in mind that he was thrust into this starting role this evening due to injuries, and only signed with the O’s last week. Straily’s line: 3.1 IP, 8 H, 5 R, 0 BB, 0 K.

Straily pitched to contact – and it showed. Oakland hitters didn’t miss much. And much of what they didn’t miss ended up in the seats.

Ponder smacked a solo homer in the second inning, which was followed up by an RBI-double in the third by Chapman. Later in the inning Davis would single Chapman home, giving Oakland a 3-0 lead.

Those were the only two Oakland runs of the game which didn’t come off the long ball. Profar would smack a two-run home run in the fourth, and Chapman another two-run shot in the fifth. The runs seemed to come in two’s, in the form of two-run homers tonight for Oakland.

The Orioles did get a brief respite in a sense come the last of the fifth. The Birds’ first hit of the game came in the form of a Trey Mancini home run – of the solo variety. Later in the inning Rio Ruiz would hit a two-run homer of his own, cutting the Oakland lead to 7-2.

Chapman and Davis would however homer for the second time in the seventh inning. Chapman with a two-run shot, and Davis with a solo shot.

The Orioles cannot continue to give up the number of home runs they’re surrendering. People can talk all they want about how the Orioles aren’t “trying to win” this year and so forth. I don’t believe for one moment that the players and coaches are buying into that mentality. They’re trying to win every time they’re putting their uniforms on.

Which is why something has to be done about the homers. This Oriole offense can get guys on base and get them home. But if they’re already too far behind to have a few runs make a difference, there’s not much we can say or do. If you continually give up the long ball, especially with guys on base, that makes it all the more difficult to function as a team with the goal of winning games.

One bright spot for the Orioles was reliever Mike Wright, who pitched the eighth and ninth innings. He gave up one hit in that period, closing out the game for the O’s. Critics will point out that coming in with the team already trailing by seven certainly isn’t a high-yield situation. However the fact is that the guy looked good, and he probably saved the O’s from having to use an additional reliever in the ninth inning.

The series with Oakland (and the home stand) concludes tomorrow afternoon at Camden Yards. Dylan Bundy gets the start for the O’s, and he’ll be opposed by Oakland’s Aaron Brooks. Game time is set for just after 12:30 PM.

Baltimore Orioles: Nibbling causes walks which costs you games

The Baltimore Orioles were unable to muster much in the Bronx this afternoon on Opening Day. Andrew Cashner got the start of course, and was ambushed early. And I mean early. Cashner’s line: 4.0 IP, 6 H, 6 R, 4 BB, 3 K.

New York didn’t take long to get the lead. With two on in the first inning Voit smacked a three-run home run. And that shouldn’t come as a surprise to the Orioles or Orioles fans. Voit tore up the Birds in Spring Training the past two seasons. That’s not to say that the Orioles should be expecting to fail when Voit’s at the plate, but he seems to thrive against Oriole pitching.

If there’s a silver lining it’s that the Orioles seemed to minimize the damage after that…for the most part. New York would load the bases against Cashner in the third, but he induced a ground ball double-play. That surrendered another run, however it also recorded two outs for the O’s. That’s a win for Cashner.

The Birds did at various points look like the offense was going to do something. They cut the lead to 4-1 in the fourth on Rio Ruiz‘s RBI-single. However New York came right back in the last of the fifth and loaded the bases yet again – once again with nobody down. That brought Voit back to the plate, and Cashner promptly hit him with a pitch. A sac fly-RBI later, and New York had extended it’s lead to 6-1.

Trey Mancini sacked an RBI-double in the eighth to cut the lead to 6-2. Mancini had a great game on Opening Day, going 3-for-4 with an RBI. He immediately cemented himself as a “veteran” leader on this team at the beginning of the spring, and that seems to have continued right into the regular season. However Bird’s solo homer in the eighth extended the lead to 7-2, which was the eventual final. It certainly wasn’t the Opening Day that the Orioles wanted, but it left them with a few tough lessons.

And one of those lessons was that pitchers shouldn’t nibble. Both Cashner and Mike Wright (who followed Cashner in the game) seemed to want to nibble on the corners. That’s a textbook symptom of an inexperienced team playing a team with a lot of power. It shows a certain hesitation, and a certain angst. Can it work on occasion? Sure. And on occasion it’s something that pitchers should do.

But nibbling shouldn’t be the way that you think you’re going to get guys out. In effect, you’re relying on the home plate umpire to give you the call. And you never want to rely on someone else when you can take matters into your own hands. Oriole pitching walked eight hitters today, which isn’t conducive to winning games.

Here’s an example; Voit’s first inning home run came on a 3-1 count. The 2-1 pitch was a low slider, which according to replays did in fact catch the bottom of the strike zone. In an ideal world, the next pitch would have come on a 2-2 count and would have then been a pitcher’s pitch. (In fairness, Jesus Sucre probably also could have brought that ball up just a bit, and framed it in the strike zone.)

Instead Cashner ended up with a 3-1 count on the next pitch, and with two runners on base knew that he needed to throw a strike. Voit knew it also, and came up swinging – the ball ended up in the seats. Now ironically that’s a situation in which Cashner in theory nibbled successfully. However again when you decide to nibble intead of pitching, you’re relying on ol’ blue to give you the call. It should have happened in that instance, but it didn’t.

The O’s of course are off tomorrow, which would have been a rain date for Opening Day had there been foul weather in NY today. But they’re back at it Saturday afternoon.

Balimore Orioles: 2019 is big for Trey Mancini

One of the more unsung Baltimore Orioles this off season has been Trey Mancini. And quite frankly I think most players would prefer that. Like most of the 2018 Orioles, Mancini had a down year last year. However he’s still young enough to where he can rebound and recapture some of his 2017 season in which he hit .293.

Mancini however is in a bit of an odd position of still perhaps being considered a young player, but also being a veteran. At Orioles’ FanFest he mentioned that he had some of the younger pups asking him how to handle aspects of professional life, such as 401K. Mancini joked that last year it was him asking those types of questions.

Mancini of course came up first in 2016 – for five games. He then made the team out of spring training in 2017, and over the course of the season hit 24 homers and 78 RBI. Most people forget this, however he had a great spring training last season as well. However in the first week of the season he injured his leg crashing into the wall chasing a foul ball at Camden Yards. While he only hit .242, he still managed to smack the same amount of homers (24), but his strikeouts were up.

So this shapes up to hopefully be a bounce back year for Mancini. However it’s more than just his on the field production that will be scrutinized. As I said above, Mancini’s going to need to be though of as a leader in this year’s clubhouse. While he’s still young himself, he has a plethora of experience as opposed to some of the other guys who’ll find themselves on the roster. And it’ll be part of his job to help all of those guys along this year.

Baltimore Orioles could be struggling for starters

Here’s an interesting question: who’s going to be starting games for the Baltimore Orioles moving forward? Any team in the Orioles’ situation should be looking at the future; and the O’s are trying to do just that. But it didn’t help matters when Luis Ortiz had to leave in the second inning with a tweaked hamstring. Ortiz’s line: 1.2 IP, 4 H, 3 R (1 earned), 1 BB, 0 K.

Ortiz gave up three RBI-singles in that span giving Chicago a 3-0 lead. The second RBI-single was of the infield variety, and came because Ortiz didn’t break to cover first base in time. Those are the mistakes that young teams make. But they’re still tough to watch.

And it may have been in that sequence when Ortiz injured himself. He broke too late off the mound to cover first base, and had to hurry over. Replays showed him wincing in pain. Starters Cobb and Cashner are both potentially injured as well. So again…exactly who are the Orioles going to use to start games the rest of the way? Injuries happen all the time, this much we know. But somehow it doesn’t seem fair that a team would readily admit that they’re not going to make it, sell their pieces off, and then have the prospects they get back in return start getting hurt.

Trey Mancini did all he could in this game to bring the Orioles back. He smacked a solo homer in the second, which unfortunately for the Birds was followed by a two-run shot by Narvaez to give Chicago a 5-1 lead. But Mancini smacked a second homer in the fourth, cutting the lead to 4-2. Yet, no team apparently is going to be outdone by the O’s this year. Garcia’s two-run shot in the fifth ran the lead to 7-2.

The O’s did however make a push in the seventh. Corban Joseph‘s two-RBI single brought them to within 7-4, and Mullins would later reach on an error that netted another run. The Birds would close to within one at 7-6 on a sac fly-RBI by Adam Jones, only to have Chicago tack on an insurance run on Cordell’s solo homer in the eighth.

Ortiz is going to potentially undergo an MRI on his hamstring. Again, injuries do happen. But there’s a hint of unfairness seeing the Orioles now have to deal with injuries occuring to some of the pieces that they received in trades. Them’s the breaks though.

The series continues tonight at Camden Yards. Yefry Ramirez gets the start for the Orioles, and he’ll be opposed by Chicago’s Reynaldo Lopez. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.

Baltimore Orioles: Trey Mancini helps Birds break losing streak

For once this year, it all seemed to come together for the Baltimore Orioles. And that’s due in large part to Trey Mancini. His five RBI helped the Orioles to break an eight-game loss streak, and got starter David Hess the win tonight. Hess’ line: 6.0 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 5 K.

Hess pitched a great game this evening. It was much like his previous outing, against these very same Toronto Blue Jays last week at Rogers Centre. However in that instance the O’s couldn’t back his outing up with any runs. This time looked to be much of the same – at first.

Hess’ tank was getting empty as the game went into the sixth inning. He was able to get out of the inning without surrendering a run, however it appeared that his night was done. And if the last of the sixth was to be as the rest of the game had gone, it probably meant that Hess was looking at a no-decision. In fact, the game had Toronto getting a two-run homer to break a scoreless tie in the ninth inning for the win written all over it.

But the Orioles loaded the bases with nobody out in the last of the sixth. Chris Davis grounded into a fielder’s choice at second, which scored a run and gave the O’s a 1-0 lead. However we all know how precarious leads like that can be in the AL East. In fact, that one run (combined with an out) almost felt like a win for the defense.

But Mancini changed all of that. His three-run homer broke the game wide open and gave the Birds a 4-0 lead. He would add a two-RBI double in the seventh, and Tim Beckham‘s RBI-single later in the inning would round out the Orioles’ 7-0 victory over Toronto.

As I said, this win broke an eight-game losing streak. The previous game that the Orioles had won was last Saturday in Cleveland. That feels like an eternity ago. However for once, the pitching and the offense finally complimented one another. Which is exactly what’s been missing on this team for the entire season. Both before and since the sell off.

The series continues tomorrow at Camden Yards. While the O’s haven’t formally announced a starter, the expectation is that they’ll call prospect Josh Rogers up from triple-A; a prospect which came back in the Britton trade. So Rogers is the presumed starter for the O’s, and he’ll be opposed by Toronto’s Thomas Pannone. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.

Baltimore Orioles: Trey Mancini’s homer not enough to lift the Birds

The Baltimore Orioles fought as hard as they could last night against New York on ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball. But in the end they came up short yet again and ended up getting swept at the hands of their division rivals. Dylan Bundy struggled through five innings, although the Orioles ate at New York’s Severino as well. Bundy’s line: 5.0 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 2 BB, 7 K.

Voit got things started for New York in the second inning with a two run homer. I said this the other day, but I’m not sure what it was about the Orioles that got this guy going. He was traded to New York in the end of July from St. Louis, in what’s best mentioned as a “low level trade.” Basically, nobody’s ever heard of the guy. Yet he tore up Orioles pitching all weekend. If he retired right now, he’d always have that.

Andujar added a two-RBI double in the third, putting New York out to a 4-0 lead. But the O’s started to claw their way back in come the fifth inning. Jonathan Villar‘s sac fly-RBI cut the lead to 4-1. However an inning later New York was able to get their four-run margin back as Voit scored on a wild pitch. Even when a hit (off his bat or off that of someone else) wasn’t involved, he still scored!

However in the last of the sixth Trey Mancini‘s solo homer slugged the Orioles back into the game. But it wasn’t to be. Jace Peterson would add an RBI-single later in the inning, but that’s as close as the Orioles got. And they fell 5-3 before a national television audience.

It’s worth mentioning that the game wasn’t the blood bath that a lot of people probably expected. The Orioles atoned for themselves fairly well on national television. They battled against a post season-bound team, and fell short. And quite frankly it’s good experience for the young players on the team to play under the bright lights of ESPN on Sunday night. That’s a courtesy that the team’s former starts (the Machado’s and Schoop’s of the world) rarely got when they first arrived on the scene.

The Orioles will now open a three-game set at home with the Toronto Blue Jays starting tonight. David Hess gets the start for the O’s, and he’ll be opposed by Toronto’s Sam Gaviglio. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.

Baltimore Orioles: Is baseball logic biting the Birds?

The Baltimore Orioles couldn’t stay out of the big inning last night against Texas. Namely, the big inning was the second inning, which in fact basically ended the game. Andrew Cashner gave up seven runs – again, ending the competitive portion of the night. Cashner’s line: 1.2 IP, 7 H, 10 R, 3 BB, 1 K. Cashner was pitching-to-contact; and the Texas hitters certainly were making contact.

The O’s actually had an early lead when Mark Trumbo grounded out to yield a run in the first inning. However Profar’s three-run homer in the last of the first gave Texas the lead for good. Then came the second inning – where Texas put seven runs on the board. if you’re going to win games, that’s not a good way to do it. And unfortunately, there will probably be more games like this during the rebuilding process.

The third and fourth innings brought three more Texas runs, as the hits with runners in scoring position just kept coming. It’s tough to come back from 13-1 down. But to their credit, the Orioles tried. Trumbo smacked a two-run homer in the fifth. One inning later the Birds also got a solo shot off the bat of Caleb Joseph. Granted however, it didn’t help matters when Texas decided to put four more runs on the board in the wake of that.

The O’s would round out the night with an RBI-single by Chris Davis, and a two-run homer by Trey Mancini. When the game ended, the score was an ugly 17-8. The sad part is that if you remove the seven-run second inning, all things being equal the O’s still lose this game by two.

Obviously the pitching itself wasn’t up to snuff last night – both Cashner and subsequent relievers. However there was one play that really struck me about this game – Profar’s RBI-single in that big second inning. Let me preface this by saying that the Orioles are a pretty by the book team. And apparently that’s fairly well known across the league.

In the aforementioned sequence, Cashner threw a low-and-away curve ball to Profar on an 0-2 count. Incidentally there were also two outs. Traditionally, teams will in essence waste a pitch on an 0-2 count because the pitcher’s already ahead and so forth. Why not try to get the guy to chase a pitch out of the zone as opposed to throwing a pitch directly in the zone?

In effect, you’re trying to outdo the hitter. The problem here is that Profar seemed to know that low-and-away curve was coming. And for the record, Cashner didn’t throw a bad curve ball. But Profar seemed ready and willing to go down and get it. And he clubbed it into the outfield for an RBI-single.

I’m not accusing Texas of stealing signs. What I’m saying is that the book on the Orioles is that they’re by the book. In trying to outdo the hitter at that moment, Cashner and the Orioles were outdone themselves because the hitter anticipated that they were going to throw a pitch exactly where they did. And ironically, had Cashner thrown a fastball right down broadway on that pitch, it would have been strike three.

The sad thing is that the manner in which the Orioles do things (in this regard) is old school baseball logic. But it’s almost biting them in the behind at times. Again, because if you want to beat the Orioles, just read the book. For what it’s worth, the Orioles became the latest team to use a position player as a pitcher last night. Danny Valencia struck out a batter to end the eight.

The series continues this evening in Texas. David Hess gets the start for the Orioles, and he’ll be opposed by Texas’ Ariel Jurado. Game time is set for just after 8 PM.

Baltimore Orioles: Trey Mancini and friends ensure that big wheels keep on turning

The Baltimore Orioles are thinking about petitioning MLB to play Tampa for the rest of the season. They put up 15 runs last night, and 11 in this evening’s ballgame on Trey Mancini bobble head night behind Kevin Gausman, who gave a great starting effort. Gausman’s line: 7.0 IP, 9 H, 2 R, 2 BB, 5 K.

Similar to last night, Tampa actually had an early 1-0 lead in this game – on Sucre’s first inning RBI-single. But that didn’t last long, as Mancini’s two-run homer in the second inning gave the Orioles the lead for good at 2-1. Joey Rickard followed suit with a solo shot, giving the Orioles back-to-back homers, and a 3-1 lead.

Tampa’s Kiermaier would smack a solo homer of his own in the third, cutting the Orioles’ lead to 3-2. And at that singular moment it appeared that this would be a game. That notion didn’t last long. The Birds loaded the bases with nobody out in the fourth, and Rickard’s bases-clearing double extended the Orioles’ lead to 6-2. That ended the competitive portion of the evening.

The game ballooned further and further out of control (from Tampa’s perspective at least) from there. Caleb Joseph‘s RBI-single later in that fourth inning gave the O’s a 7-2 lead, and two innings later in the sixth Rickard netted the Birds an additional run with an RBI-double. Add in another RBI-single by Joseph, an RBI-double by Adam Jones, and a sac fly-RBI by Mark Trumbo, and when the smoke cleared the O’s had themselves an 11-2 victory over Tampa.

It’s either been feast or famine for this team thus far in 2018 – and in saying that, I mean mostly famine. So this has been a special two games for the Orioles, who have tried in vain to date to re-capture the form they showed from 2012-2016 or so. But needless to say, for at least two nights in July we saw the Orioles of old.

I think perhaps the biggest thing was that the O’s came back this evening after a big win on Friday night and won again. Not only that, but they won with ease once again. This is a team that’s struggled to put back-to-back wins or even good performances together this year. But they did it tonight.

I’m not one who buys into the idea that players have struggled on the field because of uncertainty regarding the direction of the franchise. It just seems to me that players are paid to play regardless of anything else. The ownership/leadership issues should bear no relevance to how hard guys play on the field.

However you’d be remiss not to recognize that since the Machado trade when the Orioles committed to a rebuild, there’s been a skip in guys’ steps once again. And I’m a guy who likes to know the reasons for things, or at least knowing that reasons exist. So it kind of baffles my mind that something like that could have been such a big deal. But it’s a lot easier to justify than by saying it’s mere coincidence that the team is playing slightly better.

The series with Tampa concludes tomorrow afternoon at Camden Yards. Dylan Bundy gets the start for the Orioles, and Tampa hasn’t yet announced a starter. Game time is set for just after 1 PM.

Baltimore Orioles: Death by 1,000 paper cuts

Tonight was supposed to be an off night for the Baltimore Orioles. However Philadelphia trekked into town for a one-shot makeup game for a previously rained out affair. Kevin Gausman got the start, and he labored through five rough innings. Gausman’s line: 5.0 IP, 12 H, 5 R, 1 BB, 2 K.

Of the five runs that were charged to Gausman and the five runs they scored overall in the game, I’m not sure that any of them (save perhaps for a solo homer) didn’t come off of or after a ball that was squared up. The Orioles were dipped and dunked to death, bled by 1,000 paper cuts, and chiseled to death. One the flip side, the Birds consistently square balls up and hit them into the outfield – only to find fielders.

Philadelphia took a 1-0 lead on a soft bloop RBI-single by Santana in the third inning. Later in the inning Williams would ground into a force out which scored a run, and the O’s trailed 2-0. And Alfaro’s two-RBI double in the fourth would give Philadelphia a 4-0 lead. Toss in a solo homer two innings later the next time Alfaro came up to bat, and the Birds had dug themselves a 5-0 hole.

However the O’s got their bats going in the sixth. Manny Machado‘s RBI-single got them on the board, cutting the Philadelphia lead to to 5-1. Trey Mancini would cut the lead to 5-3 in the seventh with a two-run homer, followed by a solo shot by Jace Peterson. However while a valiant effort to come back, the Birds wouldn’t get any closer and fell 5-4. For what it’s worth, Philadelphia also swept the season series with the Birds with this win. The two teams won’t face each other again until the 2021 season – unless of course you count Grapefruit League play next spring.

I’ve had fans tweet and comment on the site how I always throw in that opposing teams score on softly hit balls. The fact is that a hit’s a hit, no matter how you get it. And whether you get aboard with a hit, a hit batsman, a walk, or an error, a base runner’s a base runner. One way or the other, teams are getting them on and getting them in against the Orioles.

The Orioles as I said square up a lot of balls. They’re just hit right to outfielders. Opposing teams seem to have this knack of hitting the ball so softly that it ends up as a hit against the Orioles. And from the Birds’ perspective, it has to be frustrating to see and experience. You’re in position and placed perfectly in accordance with the spray charts, and the guy eases up on the bat just enough to dump it right in front of you. There’s no rhyme or reason to how or why it happens. It just does. And it happens a lot to the Orioles.

The Birds will welcome the Texas Rangers into Camden Yards tomorrow night for a weekend series – the final set before the all-star break. Alex Cobb gets the start for the Orioles, and he’ll be opposed by Texas’ Cole Hamels. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.

Baltimore Orioles: A much-needed win and a possible loss

The Baltimore Orioles can’t catch a break. I bet you didn’t expect to see that sentence leading off a story about the Birds snapping a six-game losing streak. And quite frankly, I didn’t expect to have to write it. However the fact is that as grateful as the O’s were to have won that game last night, they may have lost Trey Mancini for today or possibly longer. More on that later.

Dylan Bundy was his normal solid self, putting the O’s in a spot to win. Bundy’s line: 6.0 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 9 K. That one run shouldn’t have happened, although it was earned. With Kipnis (the second hitter of the game) at the plate and one out, Chance Sisco misplayed a foul pop. That would have been a sure out, however Kipnis stayed alive and ended up getting on base – which given the Orioles’ propensity for being held accountable for all of their mistakes isn’t overly surprising.

The bases would end up being loaded later in the inning, and Bundy grazed Encarnacion’s jersey with a pitch. And when I say grazed, I mean that the ball may not have even touched hard enough to brush lint off of the jersey. But it still goes as a HBP, and in that case it forced in a run to give Cleveland a 1-0 lead.

That aside, Cleveland did the normal routine for Oriole opponents in terms of getting guys on base with seeing-eye singles and by finding holes in the shift. But Bundy never allowed any of those runners to score. The Orioles’ first hit of the game came in the last of the fourth, when Manny Machado went deep and tied the game at one.

One inning later the Birds had two on with nobody out, and Trey Mancini plated those runs with an RBI-double to the gap in left center. That gave the O’s a 3-1 lead, which the bullpen was able to hold. But unfortunately for the Orioles, the news wasn’t all good.

Mancini chased down a foul pop towards the left field line in the eighth, and crashed into the wall. He immediately rolled over in obvious pain, and was lifted from the game. The Orioles announced after the game that he was undergoing an MRI, and his status for today’s game is up in the air. Manager Buck Showalter addressed Mancini’s injury with the media after the game (quote courtesy of Brittany Ghiroli, mlb.com):

X-rays, he’s got a puncture in there, too. We’ll see how he is tomorrow. They’re contemplating a couple of sutures, but we’ll see. For him to come out of the game, he got pretty stiff.

Mancini’s listed as day-to-day, but I wouldn’t expect to see him in today’s game, unless he magically wakes up this morning and everything is healed. He’s not a guy that the Orioles can afford to lose for any extended period of time. As a lead off guy, the offense has really flowed through him of late.

The win snaps the Orioles’ aforementioned six-game losing streak. So the Mancini injury aside, that’s a good thing for this club. Now that the pressure of trying to win one is behind them, for their sake they’re hoping that they’re able to relax just a bit more. Because obviously there’s still a full season ahead, minus about three weeks.

The series continues this afternoon at Camden Yards. Chris Tillman gets the start for the O’s, and he’ll be opposed by Cleveland’s Mike Clevinger. Game time is set for just after 4 PM.

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