Aug 31, 2015; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Orioles shortstop Manny Machado (13) celebrates with right fielder Chris Davis (19) after scoring in the seventh inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Tampa Bay Rays defeated Baltimore Orioles 6-3. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
Prior to Wednesday night’s 7-6, 11-inning win of the Baltimore Orioles over the Rays, the O’s had a record of 0-61 when coming into the ninth inning trailing the other team. A two-run homer in the ninth by Jonathan Schoop evened the score at six and set up a dramatic, walk-off, monster shot by Chris Davis to lead off the bottom of the 11th inning. Davis had also earlier tied the game at four with a two-run homer, tallying his 37th and 38th on the season.
The Orioles have been an enigma late in games in 2015. Though they have shown an ability to get runners on base in the ninth inning and even score some runs, they have rather terrible numbers when coming from behind. When trailing as they begin the eighth inning this year, the Orioles have been only 1-59 in such scenarios; and as mentioned above they have been a perfect 0-61 when going into the ninth inning behind.
Last year they were 5-52 and 3-54 in those situations respectively. The 2012 team won nine games in which they trailed when entering the eighth inning, and even four when behind as the ninth inning began.
When Chris Davis gets into a groove, he really can power and carry a team. He also homered for the only two runs from the Orioles on Tuesday night.
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And certainly the Birds are going to need this and a lot more if they are to somehow power their way back into any sort of playoff position.
Most all players go through ups and downs, streaks and slumps. It is when too many players simultaneously go into slumps that a team also falls into a losing streak pattern — the O’s having had two six-game skids over the last 13 games, separated by a single victory. But with so many players who have been down, perhaps they will all cycle back up again for the last month of the season.
The Orioles have a rare day off before facing the Blue Jays in Toronto on Friday. The Jays have been at the other end of the spectrum on streaks. They have won 25 of their past 31 games. For those who like a challenge, this is right up their alley. We’ll be back tomorrow with a series preview, looking at the incredible offensive season the Jays have put together.