Game 12: Toronto Blue Jays (7-6) 11 Baltimore Orioles (5-7) 3 F
W: Mark Buehrle (3-0)
L: Ubaldo Jimenez (0-3)
MVP: Colby Rasmus 3-4, 2 R, 3 RBI, a solo HR in the first and another great job in center field
The GOOD: Again, not much. The Orioles did get a decent amount of hits, with 8 of them. However, the problem is they struggled with runners in scoring position, and some of them also came after the game was out of hand. Chris Davis hit his first homer of the year, followed by Matt Wieters who made it back-to-back. But by that point the game was far gone. Brian Matusz and Ryan Webb also came in and didn’t leave up any runs, or hits for that matter. Delmon Young also looked very good in left field. Running down a deep fly ball in the gap and throwing out runners at both second and third base.
The BAD: Ubaldo Jimenez struggled mightily, yet again. O’s fans are concerned as to whether this is the normal from Jimenez. I feel like it isn’t, but part of that is being optimistic I know. In addition, the lack of hitting with runners in scoring position (0-8) is atrocious. The Orioles hitting approach is concerning. Far too many at-bats feature them either hitting the first pitch, watching the third strike or hacking at everything thrown at them. Josh Stinson also struggled mightily. He came in with the Orioles still with a fighting chance, but by the time he exited the game was out of reach.
What’s NEXT: The Orioles will stay at home as they send struggling lefty Wei-Yin Chen (1-1, 6.75 ERA) to the mound against the Tampa Bay Rays and young righty Chris Archer (1-0 1.38 ERA). The Orioles are going to need a great start with their long man in the bullpen depleted. Chen has struggled mightily lately. The O’s will try to get their hitting jump started against one of the best pitching staffs in the majors.
As for Saturday’s game, I planned to post but had no internet access. Tommy Hunter’s blown save wasn’t quite as bad as it looked. He pitched well, Rasmus just swung at a pitch near his head. The Orioles had several clutch hits and Bud Norris did a very, very good job. That is the type of pitching Orioles fans would love to see from their entire rotation. And it is even more magnified after the start turned in by the pitcher they paid $50 million dollars to this offseason.