The Orioles came into tonight’s game on a bit of a roll. They had won three in a row, which is basically unheard of for them on the road, and they were looking to win their second consecutive series. Well, those things didn’t happen thanks to an offense that couldn’t figure out Marcus Stroman to save their lives and another bad performance from Wade Miley.
The end result was a 4-0 loss thanks to Miley’s continued erratic pitching and an offense that didn’t get a runner to second base until the eighth inning.
Wade Miley Walks the World
Raise your hand if you find it enjoyable to watch Wade Miley pitch? Me neither! Historically he has not walked as many as he is walking this year, so it’s a bit of a mystery. But it’s just brutal.
There has been some talk about how the strike zone is a bit different these days with the lower strikes not getting called, and maybe that’s what is getting Miley. But you gotta adjust, man!
Tonight Miley slogged through five innings and left with 109 pitches. He walked four batters and went to a three-ball count on 11 of the 24 batters he faced. That’s like, a lot.
The very first batter of the game that Miley faced was Jose Bautista, who hit a fly ball that just kept carrying until it landed just on the other side of the outfield wall. We didn’t know then, but they could have just stopped the game there because that was the only run the Blue Jays would need.
Miley didn’t allow any runs in the second or third inning, but that’s not because he pitched well. Both innings he allowed the leadoff batter to reach and then wiped him out on a double play ball, then immediately let the next batter reach! That’s some frustrating pitching.
The Jays finally made Miley pay in the fourth inning. There was a wonky play that got everyone excited, but I am still blaming Miley. But first things first, he allowed another home run, this one to Justin Smoak. That gave the Jays a 2-0 lead.
After striking out Troy Tulowitzki, who looks just awful at the plate these days, Miley loaded the bases on a walk and two singles. Because of course he did. He got the second out on fly ball, but then Jose Bautista completely smoked a ball toward Paul Janish at shortstop. Janish was able to get a glove on it on a hop, but it was hit so hard that it seems a credit to him that he was able to keep it in the infield, not that it mattered.
Janish tried to get the ball to Jonathan Schoop at second, but Kevin Pillar beat the throw. Schoop quickly fired to first in an effort to get the final out, but the throw was off line. Trey Mancini fell down trying to stretch for it and the ball couldn’t stay in his glove. Could Chris Davis have made that play? I think so. Schoop was charged with an error on the play.
At any rate, when the smoke cleared the Jays had scored two more runs as a result of the zaniness in the infield. If any one thing had happened just a bit differently, the Orioles may have saved two runs. But I think the real thing to do here is not allow so many damn base runners, Wade.
Miley got out of the fifth inning without allowing any more runs, but he didn’t do so without walking one last guy because of course not. He left with a pitching line of 5 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 4 BB, 5 K. His ERA on the season is now 4.54. That actually sounds respectable compared to some other ERAs in the O’s rotation, but keep in mind that on June 1st Miley’s ERA was 2.82. Seriously.
Miley’s replacement was Alec Asher, who pitched the final three innings with just one hit allowed. Not bad, Asher! Why can’t he ever do that when he’s in the rotation?
Not that it mattered, because Stroman
For all the shenanigans that Miley threw our way tonight, it’s not as though the offense did anything that would have mattered if he had been able to keep the Blue Jays off the board.
Marcus Stroman dominated the Orioles for 7 2⁄3 innings tonight, it wasn’t even a contest. He also threw his fair share of balls, but the Orioles didn’t bother working him for more than one walk. Stroman had just two 1-2-3 innings, but he didn’t allow more than one runner in any of his innings and he didn’t allow anyone to reach second. It’s kind of hard to score runs that way.
In the eighth inning Stroman seemed to be tiring, so with two outs and a runner on first he was pulled for Danny Barnes. Barnes immediately walked Manny Machado (which put a runner on second, yay!) but before we could get any ideas of a rally, Schoop struck out to end the inning.
Roberto Osuna came on to pitch the ninth and and even though it wasn’t a save situation, he struck out the side to end the game.
Tomorrow the Orioles will try to take their second consecutive road series, but Ubaldo Jimenez is starting to don’t hold your breath. A win will give them a 4-2 road trip and put two games between them and the Blue Jays. A loss will put them in a tie for last.