If you went to stubhub last night, you could have bought a ticket for tonight's game for a buck seventy nine. And maybe, just maybe, you could have gotten a major league baseball from an Oriole pitcher.
Tonight started off for Zach Britton like the previous two...after six batters, the Orioles were down 3 runs. In fairness only one was earned, thanks in large measure to an error by the pitcher himself. But Britton would battle back, and for a time make you almost believe again. From the second through the fifth, Britton would scatter six hits without allowing a run. And the bats would score single runs in the third, fourth, fifth and sixth to take a 4-3 lead heading into the bottom of the sixth. And then, it didn't go so well.
Alicides Escobar led off the inning with a fly out. And then Britton gave up a one out double. Then a single to a Royal you've probably heard of, Alex Gordon. Then an RBI single off the bat of former Brave Melky Cabrera. And out goes Britton, and in comes JJ Johnson. Then a run scoring single off the bat of Billy Butler. JJ managed to get a strikeout! But the hits just kept on coming. Jeff Francoeur got his second infield single of the night. Then a "double" that involved some hilarity involving Mark Reynolds running into an umpire. And then a two run single off the bat of Chris Getz. And then another single, with a throwing error tossed in, as JJ threw the ball to heavens knows. It was at this point that the Royals play by play guy chimed in: "and the sky is falling on the Baltimore Orioles." It wouldn't cost the Orioles anything other than pride though, as the 11th Royal to bat in the inning would ground out to the third. So 1 inning, 2 pitchers, 8 hits, 1 error and six runs.
The Orioles went quietly into that good night after that and are presumably looking forward to going back home. For some reason, in the bottom of the 8th, Fred Manfra started thanking Oriole fans for listening to the Orioles this season despite 'many nights like these.'
The Orioles had a chance to win their first road series in two months but figured to continue the suspense for a little while longer. You're welcome Oriole fans!
JJ Hardy hit his 100th career home run. And injured his ankle; the severity is not known at this point.