The Baltimore Orioles are a team that’ll beat your brains in on the scoreboard. That’s how they play, and that’s how they attempt to win games. This would be the reason that so many Orioles swing such heavy bats, because they’re literally swinging for the fences on every pitch. Then you have a team like Tampa, who’s happy as a clam with one run, or even one base.
The O’s got a quality start out of Wade Miley last night, and he more than put the team in a spot to win. Miley’s line: 7.0 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 6 BB, 8 K. The six walks aren’t stellar of course, but the game was played in various states of rain, and on top of that, the strike zone was far from consistent. There were several times where Miley, various Tampa pitchers, and various hitters on both sides found themselves glaring at the home plate umpire.
Tampa got an RBI-single by Beckham in the fourth inning to take a 1-0 lead. This came on the heels of a Miley-issued walk, on which he thought he got squeezed. Later in the inning Norris’ sac fly-RBI gave Tampa a 2-0 lead, which ended up being the final.
Tampa in essence forced the Orioles to play their game. Again, the O’s are swinging for the fences every time. Due in part to the weather of course, that just wasn’t happening last night. As I said, Tampa’s happy as a clam with one run here and one run there. And that’s what they got.
Their attitude is probably very frustrating for a team like the Orioles, who seemingly think big on every at-bat. How could one or two runs do the job?! But Tampa’s vision of the world is that if you score one run, that means the opponent has to score two to beat you – and so on.
Another area of concern is that Mark Trumbo is only hitting .203 on the year. Does he need a day off? Manager Buck Showalter is confident that he’ll get it together on his own (quote courtesy of Roch Kubatko, MASNsports):
If we knew exactly … Mark is a very good student of the game, a student of hitting. I trust him. He’ll figure it out. I know it’s frustrating for him. But you know, he’s not the only one who hasn’t been at the level he’s spoiled us with. We’ve got some other guys that (are struggling). Somebody will pay down the line.
I would agree with Showalter. Slumps happen to the best players across the board. Eventually Trumbo will get it together. The good ones always do.
The series with Tampa concludes this evening at Camden Yards, along with the home stand. Dylan Bundy will make the start for the Orioles, and he’ll be opposed by Tampa’s Alex Cobb. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.