The Orioles had a chance to go into the All Star break on a high note. A win today would have given them a four-game win streak and their first sweep of the season. Wouldn’t that be nice! Well, yes, it would have been. Instead they lost 6-1 to the Blue Jays.
Asher Wojciechowski made his second Orioles start and while he didn’t get blown up, it’s hard to say that it went well. He gave up two runs in the first inning on a two-run home run to Lourdes Gurriel, an inning in which he walked two batters and threw over 30 pitches. So, not a good start.
He did settle down after that for a bit, putting up two 1-2-3 innings before getting in trouble again in the fourth. Vladimir Guerrero Jr. doubled with one out and Wojciechowski followed that with a walk to Justin Smoak and another double, this one by Danny Jansen. Wojciechowski lucked out that the ball hopped the fence for an automatic double, because that allowed only one run to score. Wojciechowski got the next two batters to get out of trouble.
With one out in the fifth, Freddy Galvis hit a triple down the right field line, which was pretty wide open with Trey Mancini playing well off the foul line. That was it for Wojciechowski, who lasted just 4.1 innings. That’s bad for the Orioles, who have an iffy bullpen, and bad for Wojciechowski, who you know wanted to pitch deeper into game. But it’s pretty good for me, because spelling Wojciechowski over and over is not an easy task!
Shawn Armstrong replaced Wojciechowski and did him a solid, striking out Biggio and getting a fly ball out from Cavan Biggio to strand the runner. Wojciechowski’s final pitching line: 4.1 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 3 BB, 6 K. Six strikeouts isn’t bad at all! (Silver lining, people).
The Jays already had more than enough runs to win this game, but they scored three more in the sixth inning due to that iffy bullpen I mentioned earlier. Armstrong and Richard Bleier combined to allow the runs that took the score from respectable to out of reach.
Gabriel Ynoa and Paul Fry combined to keep the Blue Jays off the board for the rest of the game, but it was too little too late.
Chance Sisco at least kept the team from being shut out with a solo home run in the top of the seventh, making the score 6-1. Sisco also tried to make things interesting in the ninth with a one out single. Renato Núñez followed with a double, but neither Chris Davis nor Hanser Alberto could bring them in.
But hey! It was a pretty good day for Davis, other than that. He started his day at the plate with a double and also contributed a single and a walk. But had just six hits in the game and were 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position. That won’t lead to many wins.
So the final game before the All Star break was kind of a dud. The Orioles will be back in action on Friday, July 12th at home against the Tampa Bay Rays. If you want some Orioles action before then, the MLB Future Game is tonight at 7 p.m. on MLB Network and streaming on MLB.com. O’s prospects Grayson Rodriguez and DL Hall are on the roster.
And of course don’t forget to cheer for John Means in the All Star Game!