The general drift of this story is that Kevin Millwood pitches a solid game and the bullpen blows it. So much for Buck going undefeated for the rest of the season.
Fresh off four straight wins, the Orioles looked to win a fifth game against the Chicago White Sox.
1st Inning: Apparently, Mentor wanted to continue the great run of starting pitching and did just that by not giving up a run in the inning.
2nd Inning: The O's struck first in the bottom of the inning when Adam Jones crushed a pretty poor breaking ball from Gavin Floyd into the left field seats to give Millwood and the Orioles a 1-0 lead to work with.
3rd Inning: The Orioles offense got at it again starting with Nick Markakis. Nicky drilled a pitch sky high (or catwalk high if you're from Tampa........) that ended up bouncing off the top of the scoreboard in right field. Just missing his 9th home run of the year, Markakis scooted into second with a double. The next batter, Ty Wigginton, knocked a single into left field, scoring Markakis easily from second. Gary Thorne spelled it out best with "Nick will make the turn, Pierre has no arm, and a run will score!" He didn't even pause at "Pierre has no arm." Awesome.
4th Inning: With the O's leading 2-0, Millwood got his one blemish of the game letting Carlos Quentin go yard for a solo shot. O's lead 2-1.
7th Inning: With Millwood out the game, Buck turns to the ever-reliable Jason Berken to bring it home. Berken responds to all of this responsibility by promptly giving up a massive double to A.J. Pierzynski, scoring Alexei Ramirez.
8th Inning: In attempt to ensure that Buck would lose his first game, Berken gives up another run to put the Sox up 3-2. Juan Pierre led off the inning with a single to left and advanced to second on an Omar Vizquel sacrifice. Alex Rios put the finishing touches on that with a single to score Pierre.
9th Inning: Matt Albers relieved Jason Berken and didn't fare any better, giving up a run of his own.
Poor Mentor. He really deserved a win in this game, but got nothing from the bullpen beyond a few poorly placed sliders from Berken. Maybe he'll win Nick Markakis' 5K run tomorrow or something to redeem himself. O's and White Sox are back at it tomorrow afternoon. Jeremy Guthrie takes the hill versus Mark Buehrle for the Sunday matinee.Five Game Notes:
1) Mentor really deserved to win. Five ERs in each of his last five starts and then he joins the club as the most recent Oriole starter to pitch an outstanding game (1 ER over 6 innings). Millwood's last win dates back to June 24th.
2) Run on Nick Markakis. Try it, I dare you. See how far you get.
3) While we're at it, don't bother running on Wieters either. Okay, Alex Rios was probably safe, but Gordon Beckham wasn't even close. Matt's defense has been absolutely outstanding of late. Now if only we could get him hitting a little bit......
4) Speaking of hitting, with two on and nobody out (back to back singles by Jones and Pie), Wieters grounds into the double play. C'mon man! That's clearly not the reason we lost this game, but stuff like that doesn't help the cause.
5) I see why Josh Bell is batting 9th.