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GameThread: Orioles (60-90) @ Red Sox (83-67), 7:10pm

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I'm kind of torn on the subject of Clay Buchholz. On one hand, I'd kind of like for him to turn out to be a good pitcher, because that makes that no-hitter against the Orioles in 2007 in his second major-league start so much less embarrassing. On the other hand, he's on the Red Sox, so I hate him. Come to think of it, that's pretty cut and dry after all. To hell with Clay Buchholz.

I'll never forget that no-hitter because that night I was at a wedding celebration for a friend of mine. He got married in a courthouse in Seattle but came back to Maryland so he and his wife could celebrate with all of the MD friends and family, which really meant everybody was getting drunk. Late in the evening, I was being mocked for my steadfast devotion to the Orioles, and drunkenly was ranting about how the Orioles don't suck that bad - so I stumbled to a computer and checked the O's score to see the headline, "Buchholz no-hits O's in second ML start." It was further proof of my theory that the universe likes to make me look stupid.

As for 2010, there are some idiots talking about Buchholz for Cy Young because he has a 2.48 ERA. He's thrown 159.2 innings, so people can get that talk out of here. Not even in the conversation. Although the odds are in favor of him looking like Cy Young tonight, because in his last three career starts against the Orioles he has a 0.41 ERA. For all that, there are four Orioles slugging .500+ against him, so maybe we can actually turn that into some runs.

For the O's, Brad Bergesen is starting. He's coming off a complete game against Toronto and is sporting a 1.74 ERA for September after a 2.72 ERA for August. After a start on July 26 his ERA stood at 6.95 and it is now down to 5.03. I'll admit that I like Bergy and I want him to be serviceable. Even a contending team's going to end up with a guy on the staff with a 4.50 ERA who goes 6-7 innings per start. With a strong finish he can end up in that vicinity, even more impressive considering his early struggles. Tonight, Bergy needs to watch out for Adrian Beltre and J.D. Drew, who each have a pair of home runs off him in 15 and 16 PA respectively. The wind was killing fly balls last night, and if that's the case tonight as well, that's going to be a good sign for Bergy even if he's not getting grounders.

With a win tonight, the O's guarantee a victory in this series, and in the season series against the Red Sox, and probably put the final dagger in the fleeting, irrational hopes of the few Red Sox fans who aren't bandwagoning pink hats and are actually still following the team and believing they might pull off a playoff appearance. I like the sound of that. Go O's!


Lineup

Baltimore Orioles @ Boston Red Sox

09/21/10 7:10 PM EDT

Baltimore Orioles Boston Red Sox
Brian Roberts - 2B Marco Scutaro - 2B
Nick Markakis - RF J.D. Drew - RF
Ty Wigginton - 1B Victor Martinez - C
Luke Scott - DH David Ortiz - DH
Matt Wieters - C Adrian Beltre - 3B
Adam Jones - CF Jed Lowrie - SS
Felix Pie - LF Ryan Kalish - CF
Robert Andino - 3B Daniel Nava - LF
Cesar Izturis - SS Lars Anderson - 1B