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Put a bird on it!

Updated: 2017-08-20T17:49:20-04:00


Orioles fall to Angels 5-4 in Tillman’s return to rotation


Chris Tillman returned to the starting rotation today, and he was just as bad as when he left. The O’s couldn’t complete a comeback, and ultimately lost 5-4 on Sunday afternoon. Despite a close-looking score of 5-4, the Orioles actually got walloped on Sunday afternoon. Chris Tillman came back into the starting rotation presumably so that Dylan Bundy can get some extra rest between starts, and the outcome was not pretty. With today’s loss, the Orioles fall to 60-64 on the 2017 season. For those with relatively short memories, Chris Tillman was finally yanked from the O’s starting rotation after a disastrous start against Detroit on August 3rd where he surrendered seven runs in two innings pitched. Since then he’d only thrown 2.1IP out of the bullpen across two scoreless appearances. Starting opposite Chris Tillman today was Paker Bridwell, who despite similar outcomes, far out-pitched Tillman. Neither pitcher earned a decision in the game, because ultimately the winning run was scored off of the bullpen that blinked first—that of the Orioles. Tillmaaaannnn *sigh* So, Chris Tillman actually came out and threw a clean first inning. Weird, right? Any early optimism that may have inspired was quickly erased in the second. Kole Calhoun led off the second with a home run, and suddenly things were back to normal. Tillman was missing his spots and issuing walks in between hard-hit balls. C.J. Cron hit a two-out drive that looked like another homer off the bat, but ended up being caught by AJ on the warning track. The Angels kept chugging in the third. Ben Revere picked-up a one out walk, and stole second base on a pitch that struck out Mike Trout. Who knows if CaJo would’ve had a shot at cutting down Revere, because the ball actually popped out of his hand on the transfer. With two down, Albert Pujols reached for a low and outside pitch, pulling it sharply into left, and scoring Revere. After issuing another walk, Tillman escaped the inning with the score still only 2-0 at that point. Tillman threw passable fourth and fith innings, aided by GiDPs in both. He didn’t look dominant by any stretch of the imagination, but kept the Angels off of the scoreboard. Through the end of fifth, the Angles and Orioles had combined to ground into four double plays on the afternoon. In the sixth inning, with one down, Chris Tillman issued a walk to Kole Calhoun. This was good for Chris’s fifth walk of the game. Andrelton Simmons followed by crushing the 17th home run of the three game series. Suddenly a game that had been close for more than half of the affair didn’t look it any longer. 4-1 Angels. Following the big blow, Tillman made good by issuing his sixth walk of the game to Luis Valbuena, and Buck Showalter cried “mercy!” Darren O’Day came on to pitch in favor of Tillman and got two quick outs to end the inning, This sealed Tillman’s final line at a cringe-worthy 5.1IP, 4H 4ER, 6BB, 2SO. Honestly, it really could have been much worse as far as results. 10 base runners allowed over just-over half those many innings. That’s like, what? A ~2 WHIP? Nothing seems to have changed in Tillmanland. A growing sample size for a growing boy Up until this point, any discussion of Parker Bridwell’s success has come with a caveat of small sample size. With each passing start, that caveat becomes less and less relevant. Bridwell is now sporting a 2.92 ERA over 12 starts for the Angels—and his team is 11-1 in those games. The Orioles scored their only pre-sixth inning run off of Bridwell in the third when Chris Davis led off with a display of his signature opposite field power. Also of interest in the third, CaJo struck out on what replays proved to be a foul tip into the ground. Eric Cooper, today’s home plate umpire, didn’t agree and Caleb was sort of lucky to not get tossed when he angrily turned around and pointed to the exact spot where the ball made a mark in the dirt. He was right, but as a general rule, it’s not okay to show up an umpire like that. There was a brief int[...]

Sunday afternoon Orioles game thread: vs. Angels, 1:35



Chris Tillman got sent to the bullpen because he was bad. Now, he’s back in the rotation, pitching against the Angels on Sunday.

The Orioles are three games out of a wild card spot with 39 games to play. That doesn’t sound like all that much, and it’s really not - although they would have to win 60% of their remaining games just to get to 84 wins, and it’s still a big question whether that will even be enough.

And here we are this afternoon and at least one of those remaining games will be started by Chris Tillman, whose absolute mess of a 2017 season is one reason why the Orioles are in this situation. He’s hardly the only one, but geez. Are we supposed to think that a bullpen exile that saw him pitch to six live batters was the solution to everything that ailed him? Maybe there will be a miracle.

More likely, the Orioles will get shut down by former Oriole Parker Bridwell, now pitching for the Angels, and we will all have to endure the chorus of people who like to line up to take whacks at Dan Duquette for some of his worst decisions.

Today's Lineups

Ben Revere - LF Tim Beckham - SS
Mike Trout - CF Manny Machado - 3B
Albert Pujols - DH Jonathan Schoop - 2B
Kole Calhoun - RF Adam Jones - CF
Andrelton Simmons - SS Trey Mancini - LF
Luis Valbuena - 3B Mark Trumbo - RF
C.J. Cron - 1B Chris Davis - 1B
Juan Graterol - C Seth Smith - DH
Cliff Pennington - 2B Caleb Joseph - C
Parker Bridwell - RHP Chris Tillman - RHP

Orioles prospects 8/19: Runs come easy for Bowie, Frederick


Three of the five Orioles affiliates were winners on Friday night, with Austin Hays and Ryan Mountcastle coming up big for Bowie. Norfolk Tides 4, Toledo (Tigers) 3 (12 innings) It took them a while, but the Tides were eventually able to convert a leadoff double from Drew Dosch in the 12th inning into a walkoff sacrifice fly for a win. The Tides used just four pitchers over the 12 innings of the game, with starter Gabriel Ynoa going seven. Ynoa allowed three runs on five hits and struck out five without walking a batter. Relievers Andrew Faulkner, Donnie Hart, and Jimmy Yacabonis combined to hold the Mud Hens scoreless for the rest of the game. Hart and Yacabonis each pitched two innings and struck out three batters apiece. There wasn’t a whole lot going on at the plate for the Tides, as they only had nine hits in the game’s 12 innings. Three of those nine were hit by Dosch. That included a pair of doubles, of which Dosch now has 32 this season. The 2013 seventh round pick has a respectable, if not exciting, .751 OPS in 105 games with Norfolk. Bowie Baysox 9, Erie (Tigers) 0 The Bowie offense came alive with 15 hits in the game, six of which went for extra bases. That included a 3-4 night for third baseman Ryan Mountcastle, all three of which were doubles. Outfield sensation Austin Hays had a three hit night as well, though only one of his went for extra bases. Stacey’s cousin Lucas Long (not actually Stacey’s cousin) needed just 65 pitches to clear five innings against the SeaWolves, scattering five hits and a walk while striking out four batters. Long has a 2.77 ERA in a swingman kind of role for the Baysox this season. He’s pitched 110.2 innings with a 1.20 WHIP. Frederick Keys 9, Carolina (Brewers) 4 If you looked at the hit column, where Carolina led 17-9, you might think that it would be the Mudcats who scored nine runs in the game. However, it was the Keys, who were able to generate their offense with efficiency. Three Carolina errors ultimately led to just one unearned run out of the nine they scored. Starting pitcher Reid Love scattered nine hits and a walk over six innings, giving up just one run while striking out six batters. Not too bad. Lakewood (Phillies) 4, Delmarva Shorebirds 3 (11 innings) Delmarva gave up three in the eighth to fall behind, scored two in the ninth to send it to extra frames, then lost in a walkoff in the eleventh. Both teams had eight hits apiece. Starter Travis Seabrooke started the game with six scoreless for Delmarva, allowing just two hits and two walks. That’s a good night. Four different Shorebirds batters had two hit nights. Nobody else had a hit, though, and they only drew one walk. Tough to score runs when things are like that. Hudson Valley (Rays) 2, Aberdeen IronBirds 1 These two teams combined for just nine hits in the game. Snoozer or pitcher’s duel? I couldn’t tell you. What I can tell you is that Tobias Myers, the player traded to the Rays for Tim Beckham, struck out eight Aberdeen batters in 5.2 innings, giving up a run on just three hits and a walk. IronBirds pitcher Cameron Bishop, the 26th round pick whose signing had to be approved after the deadline, wasn’t too shabby himself. Though Bishop allowed two runs and took the loss, only one of the runs was earned. He went six innings, giving up five hits and two walks while striking out four. Complete box scores from Saturday’s games, including the adventures of the GCL and DSL Orioles, can be found here. Sunday’s Scheduled Games Norfolk: vs. Toledo, 4:05. Starter: Alec Asher Bowie: vs. Erie, 2:05. Starter: David Hess Frederick: at Carolina, 2:00. Starter: TBD Delmarva: at Lakewood, 1:05 (doubleheader). Starters: Matthias Dietz, Alex Wells Aberdeen: at Hudson Valley, 5:05. Starter: A different TBD [...]

Sunday Bird Droppings – Orioles fall short against Angels


Saturday Baltimore celebrated 25 years at Camden Yards. Sunday is a significant game to try and gain ground on Los Angeles. Home runs hound Orioles again in 5-1 loss – MASN Sports “Kevin Gausman lowered his head tonight and slapped his right hand against his thigh as he made the slow walk toward the home dugout. He was working on a three-hitter through three innings. Frustration came from the three home runs that accounted for those hits.” Kevin Gausman allows career high four homers as Orioles fall to Angels, 5-1 – Baltimore Sun “Gausman’s start marked the fourth straight game in which an Orioles starting pitcher failed to get through five innings. Over that stretch, the club’s rotation owns a 10.70 ERA.” Kevin Gausman struggles as Orioles lose to Angels – Camden Chat “Last night Jeremy Hellickson gave up five runs on four homers in the first two innings and eventually the Orioles came back and won the game. Tonight, it felt like Kevin Gausman looked at that road map and thought, “Hey, it worked for him!” Sadly, giving up a boat load of dingers isn’t actually the way to win a game, which Gausman learned tonight.” Buck Showalter shares memories of O’s ’92 skipper Johnny Oates as mentor, colleague – Baltimore Sun “Showalter often talks of the lessons he learned from Oates, who managed him in 1982 at Double-A Nashville and in 1983 at Triple-A Columbus. The Nashville team won a Southern League championship. Showalter has spoken several times about how Oates kept him on the Triple-A rosters for an extra day so he could receive a $500 incentive bonus that Showalter said he used to by a microwave.” The numbers behind Tim Beckham’s sensational start – Baltimore Wire “Beckham, 27, leads Major League Baseball in numerous major statistical categories for the month of Aug., including hits, doubles, triples, runs, and a batting average that sits at .500 entering Thursday’s play. He hit safely in 12 straight games to begin his Orioles career and is in the midst of a jaw-dropping streak of three consecutive games with a lead-off home run.” History and birthdays Speaking of the 1992 Orioles, on August 20 of that year, the Birds defeated the Seattle Mariners 2-1 in 10 innings. Rick Sutcliffe went 7.2 innings, giving up only one run. On August 20, 1982, the Orioles defeated the Texas Rangers 4-2 in Arlington, Texas. The game lasted 12 innings and took the O’s record to 62-57. Eddie Murray hit a home run, his 20th of the season, in the fourth inning. Happy birthday to some former old-time Orioles, including: Gene Kingsale, George Zuverink, Sig Jakucki, Beau Bell. Among other events in history, August 20 brought some news over the years. · 2010 - The last American combat brigade exited Iraq after more than seven years after the U.S. led invasion began. · 1991 - A rally of more than 100,000 people occurred outside the Russian parliament building to protest the coup that removed Gorbachev from power. · 1964 - A $1 billion anti-poverty measure was signed by U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson. · 1948 – The Cleveland Indians and Chicago White Sox played at Municipal Stadium in Cleveland before a crowd of 78,382 people. It was the largest crowd to see a nighttime major-league baseball game to date. · 1953 - It was announced by the Soviet Union that they had detonated a hydrogen bomb. [...]

Kevin Gausman struggles as Orioles lose to Angels 5-1


The Orioles celebrated 25 years at Camden Yards tonight but didn’t get any help from the current team. They lost 5-1. Camden Yards first opened in 1992, 25 years ago. Tonight the Orioles honored the 1992 team with a home run derby and a pre-game ceremony to honor the players, including Cal Ripken, Brady Anderson, Chris Hoiles, and more. A full house was on hand to help celebrate and to cheer on the current team to what would hopefully be a second straight win. Well, hopefully the crowd enjoyed the celebration of the 1992 team, because the 2017 team didn’t give them much to enjoy. The offense pretty much disappeared, Kevin Gausman had a very poor outing, and to top it all off there was a rain delay. The end result was a 5-1 loss to the Angels. Gausman Gets Rocked Last night Jeremy Hellickson gave up five runs on four homers in the first two innings and eventually the Orioles came back and won the game. Tonight, it felt like Kevin Gausman looked at that road map and thought, “Hey, it worked for him!” Sadly, giving up a boat load of dingers isn’t actually the way to win a game, which Gausman learned tonight. The first home run that Gausman gave up was to Mike Trout. It was not a great pitch, a mid-90s fast ball up in the strike zone, but I don’t generally look down too much on a home run from the greatest baseball player currently playing. But quickly it became evident that Gausman’s problem was not facing Trout; he was just very much off his game. He gave up another home run to Trout the second time he faced him, because as I’ve mentioned, he was bad tonight. If giving up a home run to Mike Trout can be forgiven, not so much is giving up two home runs to Luis Valbuena. Valbuena did have 13 home runs coming into the game, but he also was hitting .191/.254/.390. He’s not the guy that you let beat you, and yet that is what Gausman did. Twice. The first was a solo shot in the second inning, the second a two-run homer in fourth inning that made the score 5-1. The Angels scored in each of the first four innings and if it were up to Gausman they probably would have scored in the fifth as well. He faced two batters in the inning, the second on his fourth walk of the game. That was finally enough to get Buck Showalter out of the dugout, he pulled Gausman for Miguel Castro. Castro was able to strand both of Gausman’s runners despite a terrible throw by Tim Beckham to botch a double play, followed by a walk of his own. He got all three outs, the third of which was on a long fly ball that looked for a second like it might be a grand slam. Seth Smith caught it just in front of the left field wall. Gausman has been on a good run of late, 1.80 ERA over his last six starts before tonight. But this was his second poor start out of three, the other also against the Angels when he gave up four runs in 5 1⁄3 innings in California. His pitching line tonight was an ugly one: 4 IP, 6 H, 5 R, 4 BB, 3 K, 4 HR. The O’s bullpen put up a very good showing, but the damage was done. Castro, Richard Bleier, and Mychal Givens didn’t allow any runs and only Castro gave up a hit. Givens in particular was great, striking out four of the six batters he faced. Offense Goes Missing While it’s very true that Gausman pitched a poor game, the truth is that he would have had to be nearly perfect to make a difference in this game. Other than one run the first inning the O’s offense wasn’t able to do any more against Angels’ starter JC Ramirez. Things got off to a great start with a lead off double from Tim Beckham and an infield by Manny Machado to put runners on the corners with no outs. Beckham scored on a wild pitch, with Machado moving to second. Machado moved to third on a ground out and Adam Jones walked, but then Trey Mancini hit into an inning-ending double play. And that was about all the excitement we saw. Ramirez had just one 1-2-3 inning in his 5 2⁄3 pitched, but the Orioles couldn’t get[...]

Saturday night Orioles game thread: vs. Angels, 7:05



The Orioles won in just about the most dramatic fashion possible against the Angels on Friday night. Can they stay on the win column tonight?

Following Friday’s exciting walkoff win over the Angels, a reporter asked Buck Showalter one of the standard boring reporter questions along the lines of, “How big was this win?” Buck replied that it was nice enough, but they’ve got to win tomorrow and the next day and the next day and so on.

As Earl Weaver would say, momentum is your next day’s starting pitcher. And it really won’t mean a whole lot that the Orioles won in such a nice way last night if they don’t win either tonight or tomorrow as well. Preferably, both! But it’s one game at a time, and for tonight they should only worry about tonight.

It’ll be Kevin Gausman on the mound for the Orioles. He’s been good in the second half. If that continues, I will like their chances every time he pitches. Whether it’s going to continue - ah, that’s always the mystery.

O’s hitters will be going up against J.C. Ramirez, against whom they did very well out in Anaheim. Can they do it again? Also a mystery! They’ll have to do it without Chris Davis and Welington Castillo, who are both sick and out of the lineup a second straight game. That means another dose of Anthony Santander, who played a small yet memorable role in yesterday’s big ninth inning rally.

Maybe there will be some good vibes in the stadium for the celebration of the 25th anniversary of Oriole Park at Camden Yards, with many of the 1992 Orioles (who won 89 games) being in the house for festivities that include a miniature replica Camden Yards giveaway. Hopefully it goes a little bit better for the present day Orioles than did last year’s game honoring the 50th anniversary of the 1966 World Series.

Today's Lineups

Ben Revere - LF Tim Beckham - SS
Mike Trout - CF Manny Machado - 3B
Albert Pujols - DH Jonathan Schoop - 2B
Kole Calhoun - RF Adam Jones - CF
Andrelton Simmons - SS Trey Mancini - 1B
Luis Valbuena - 3B Mark Trumbo - DH
C.J. Cron - 1B Seth Smith - LF
Martin Maldonado - C Anthony Santander - RF
Kaleb Cowart - 2B Caleb Joseph - C
JC Ramirez - RHP Kevin Gausman - RHP

Orioles prospects 8/18: When it rains, it pours



Rain delayed or postponed a lot of the action on the Orioles farm on Friday. One bit of good news: Chance Sisco homered for Norfolk.

Toledo (Tigers) 5, Norfolk Tides 2

A four-run seventh inning was what really did in the Tides. Well, that and the fact that they left 11 men on base and went just 1-12 with RISP in the game.

Things went smoothly for starter Mike Wright until that seventh inning. Four of the seven hits he allowed, and both walks, came in the inning. Wright got the hook with the bases loaded and Vidal Nuno allowed two of the runners to score. It added up to a five runs, all earned kind of night for Wright. Oops.

Catcher Chance Sisco was 1-3 for the Tides, hitting his fifth home run of the season. Sisco also threw out the only Mud Hens runner who tried to take a base on him.

Erie (Tigers) 5, Bowie Baysox 2

The Baysox gave up three runs in the top of the first, scored two runs in the bottom of the inning, then didn’t score again. In fact, they didn’t get a hit again after the first inning, which is generally going to be a hard way to win a baseball game.

This was a Tanner Scott night. Scott was not able to finish his standard three innings, as he gave up the three first inning runs and took 46 pitches to get through just two innings. A three-run home run is what did most of the damage, though it didn’t help that Scott gave up three hits and two walks out of 11 batters faced.

Carolina (Brewers) 6, Frederick Keys 2

Not great to look in the box score on the day Cody Sedlock was pitching and see that the Keys gave up six runs. Only one was charged to Sedlock, though - but then again, he gave up eight hits and two walks in just 4.2 innings.

In all, the Keys were out-hit in the game, 14-8. They ended up leaving just five men on base and weren’t able to make much of their limited chances, going 1-7 with RISP.

Delmarva Shorebirds - postponed, rain

Aberdeen IronBirds 10, Brooklyn (Mets) 4

The IronBirds made the most of their 12 hits in this game, scoring runs in bunches: Two in a couple of innings and three in a couple of innings. Catcher Ben Breazeale hit a three-run homer, his fourth of the season. Third baseman Trevor Craport had a 4-5 night, while Mason McCoy went 3-5 in the game. All three of these guys are batting over .300 for the season.

Complete box scores from Friday’s games, including the adventures of the GCL and DSL Orioles, can be found here.

Saturday’s Scheduled Games

  • Norfolk: vs. Toledo, 7:05. Starter: Gabriel Ynoa
  • Bowie: vs. Erie, 6:35. Starter: Lucas Long
  • Frederick: at Carolina, 5:00. Starter: Reid Love
  • Delmarva: at Lakewood, 7:05. Starter: Travis Seabrooke
  • Aberdeen: at Hudson Valley, 7:05. Starter: TBD

Saturday Bird Droppings - Manny does it again


Just when it looked like the game (and maybe the season) was lost, Manny Machado hit yet another grand slam. This guy’s good. Machado’s third home run a walk-off grand slam as O’s rally to win - The Washington Post"[Manny Machado] hammered a one-out grand slam for his third home run of the night, and the Orioles escaped with a 9-7 victory before 26,185 at Camden Yards. It was his third grand slam in the past 11 games, and it was huge for the Orioles, who were on the verge of falling four games behind in the crowded race for the second American League wild-card slot." Manny Machado on his walk-off grand slam against the Angels - Steve Melewski"What did he think when he made contact? “You know I got it.” he said. “I was looking for a pitch and I made a good swing on it. Off the bat I knew it would go far. Always good to be in situation where you can give the team a W." Orioles notes: Rule 5 pick Santander sees immediate action, Tillman could start Sunday - Baltimore Sun“They’re going to play,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said of Anthony Santander. “Something happens every day, you walk in here and two guys are sick and you’re one of 25. … You can’t [just] carry them (Rule 5 picks). They’re going to play. I was hoping we’d kind of be able to ease him into it, but this is fine, too. Sometimes it works better that way, too.” Kirby on Santander: "He shouldn't be nervous playing the outfield" - School of Roch"He’s probably going to make a hard adjustment paying attention to how the defense moves. That’s probably the hardest thing. Everybody’s got to go through it. Even (Craig) Gentry. He was coming from a Sabermetric-type thing where you play here the whole time, but we don’t do that. It’s a little adjustment they’ve got to make.” - Orioles coach Wayne Kirby A 25th anniversary stroll down memory lane - School of Roch"Glenn Davis admitted today, with tears in his eyes, that it wasn’t easy to come back to Baltimore. But he’s glad that he made the decision, no matter how hard it tugged at him." The 1992 Orioles engage in some trash talk about Saturday's Home Run Derby - Baltimore Sun“Brady’s still hitting in simulated games out here,” Cal Ripken said. “I think Brady is setting the home run thing up so he can win.” Mike Mussina says he had best of both worlds playing for Orioles and Yankees - Baltimore Sun“I played 18 years, so fortunate to be able to do that, and to play 10 of them here and eight of them in New York,” Mike Mussina said. “I can’t say one of them over the other. I’ve got two teams. That’s the way I look at it. I’m not going to choose one over the other. Birthdays and History Happy Birthday to J.J. Hardy and former Orioles Lance Cormier, Rocky Cherry, Luis DeLeon, Jim Lehew, and Jim Finigan. Get well, J.J.! Just, you know, not before Sept. 1. Anyway, they share this day with famous people including airplane co-inventor Orville Wright 1871; fashion maven Coco Chanel 1883; T.V. pioneer Philo Taylor Farnsworth 1906; Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry 1921; Triple Crown jockey Willie Shoemaker 1931; drummer Ginger Baker 1939; Deep Purple singer Ian Gillan 1945; Pres. Bill Clinton 1946; actor Jonathan Frakes 1952; actress Mary Matalin 1953; actor Adam Arkin 1956 (seriously, how is he three years younger than Mary Matalin?); "Full House" heart-throb John Stamos 1963; actress Kyra Sedgwick 1965; former MTV News reporter Tabitha Soren 1967; actor tennis champion Mary Joe Fernandez 1971; and rapper Lil' Romeo 1989. On this day in Baltimore baseball history... 1902 - Baltimore outfielder Kip Selbach sets the post-1900 mark in the American League by making four errors, a mark tied by Braves flychaser Fred Nicholson in 1922. 2016 - The Astros and Orioles engage in a slugfest in Baltimore, with Houston coming out on top, 15 - 8. After George Springer l[...]