Game 13: Tampa Bay Rays 1 (7-7) Baltimore Orioles 7 (6-7) F
W: Wei-Yin Chen (2-1)
L: Chris Archer (1-1)
MVP: J.J. Hardy ¾, 2 R, 1 RBI, 2 2B, 3 DP turned,
The GOOD: A lot. First, let’s start with the Orioles’ defense, which was spectacular behind Wei-Yin Chen. Chen deserves a lot of credit. He had a tough spring, and the 2014 season had not started out very promising. But he looked very good in this one, not allowing a hit until the fifth inning and also making sure that after the Orioles scored, he kept the Rays off the scoreboard. The offense also was cooking. The Orioles were a combined 13/37, with five doubles, four 2-out RBIs and went 6-13 with runners in scoring position. And to think this all came with no home runs! The Orioles didn’t see a ton of pitches, in fact Matt Wieters had three hits in four at bats and only saw six pitches. But, they were more patient and had a much better approach in this game. Reportedly Jim Presley noticed a few things while he was home ill and was able to talk to the players about it. I’d say it already is paying dividends.
The BAD: The Orioles OF is very good defensively, but hitting-wise, it was quite ugly on Monday night. Between David Lough, Adam Jones and Nick Markakis they went 0-13 with four strikeouts and left five of the Orioles seven runners on base. Otherwise, nothing to complain about from this fine game!
What’s NEXT: The Orioles are scheduled to send Miguel Gonzalez (0-1) to the mound against young Rays right-hander Jake Odorizzi (1-1). However, Mother Nature may dictate whether this game gets played, as rain is expected throughout the day. The Orioles will try to get back to .500 if they can play, but that is a big if. Miguel Gonzalez is another pitcher who has struggled so far, but he has a chance to right the ship in this game. Let’s see if he can be as successful as Wei-Yin Chen was on Monday!