Baltimore Orioles: Snatching Defeat from the Jaws of Victory


Apr 26, 2015; Baltimore, MD, USA; Boston Red Sox third baseman Pablo Sandoval (48) hits a three run home run during the seventh inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Baltimore Orioles defeated Boston Red Sox 18-7. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

It is very difficult for many fans of the Baltimore Orioles to be optimistic even when things go well, because surely such is a total fluke or aberration. And since Sunday’s game with the Red Sox did not (on the surface) provide much fodder for pessimism, I will see it as my job today to help feed the negativity … someone has to do it before encouragement morphs fully into all-out euphoria.

After finally showing some offensive life by getting hits in five straight games, Manny Machado officially registered an 0-for-4 on Sunday. His average right now is only .224.

It is going to be difficult for the Orioles to win games when their lineup has the top three hitters – Everth Cabrera, Machado, and Adam Jones – only combine for 3-for-14 (.214). Jones saw his average drop nine points on Sunday.

Steve Pearce still mired in an early-season slump with his average not yet breaking the Mendoza line at .196 – even after a 2-for-3 day with a walk and sac-fly RBI.

With two hits today, Everth Cabrera is still only batting .211 over his past 10 games, while word is that J.J. Hardy got a cortisone shot in his ailing shoulder and is shut down until Wednesday.

What in the world are the Orioles going to do with Jimmy Paredes? Where is there a place for him? They put him in at third base for one inning and he commits an error.

Though it did not catch up with him until the seventh inning, Bud Norris was missing his spots all day. Jim Palmer pointed it out several times. His ERA is a hefty 12.18.  

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How are the Orioles going to keep a Rule 5 Draftee? Jason Garcia was only in the game on Sunday because he was performing meaningless duty. And sure enough, he allows four runs to score on a pair of Hanley Ramirez homers. That is four homers this season already for Ramirez against the Orioles, and we’re not even out of April.

An unusual number of Orioles hits on Sunday were balls that dropped between outfielders, ground balls that made it through the infield, and fly outs that Mookie Betts played into a pair of doubles. It would be great to have seen some stronger contact in these at-bats.

Chris Davis managed to not strike out for only the fifth time in 18 games this year. It was the first time he avoided it in two consecutive games, but he still leads the league with 27 on the season.

The Orioles pitching staff – the one with the worst ERA in the American League – allowed the Red Sox to cross the plate seven times in the final three innings!  How can a team possibly win games when that is happening? Two words: Andrew Miller.

So, putting this all together, how can the Orioles score runs and win? It’s all Dan Duquette’s fault for not re-signing Cruz and Markakis in the offseason. The O’s are in last place in the AL East.

Next: Little things that win and lose games