How do you lose to Baltimore? You don’t pitch, and you don’t hit.
Kyle Weiland started. He wasn’t the problem. Actually, he was pretty decent. He wasn’t great during the first few innings – he allowed two runs in the second and one in the third – but he settle down after that. In the end, those were the only runs he gave up. He allowed six hits while walking three and striking out two over six innings. He threw exactly one hundred pitches, sixty-one of which were strikes. Once a kid gets past the first start, with all the nerves and pressure that that entails, his stuff shins through a little bit and you actually get to see what he’s working with. Weiland, it turns out, is pretty good.
Aceves was the problem. I don’t even remember the last time when Aceves was even remotely close to a problem. And he had to pick a game against Baltimore to blow it?
It was brief but apparently deadly. He lost all control in the eighth. He issued a four-pitch walk and then gave up two consecutive homers. Baltimore doubled their runs, and we ended up losing, 6-2.
Reddick led off the fifth inning with a double; Salty homered on a cutter. It was his second dinger in as many games. At the time, it brought us within one run. Nobody knew we would turn into an utterly pathetic mass and lose to the Orioles. Those were the only two runs we scored.
Pedroia extended his hitting streak to seventeen games, which ties the career high he reached three seasons ago, and Reddick went three for four with the lineup’s only multi-hit performance and must permanently start, like, immediately. Surprisingly, Gonzalez went hitless yesterday and is only two for twenty-four since returning from the All-Star Game. No, I don’t think the Home Run Derby has anything to do with it. I’m also not willing to be an alarmist about it and say that suddenly he’s no longer the MVP. If there were ever a hitter you don’t need to worry about because he’s smart at the plate and always has a plan, it’s Gonzalez.
Our winning streak against the Orioles has stopped at seven. We left four on base and went only one for four with runners in scoring position. We did almost nothing opposite a team against which we should have been able to do everything and then some. The worst we can do now is wing the series, but it’s so unbelievably frustrating because it should have been an easy sweep.