The Orioles went out tonight and did Oriole things. They didn’t pitch well. Like, at all. It was just incredibly bad. The only pitcher not to allow a run was the position player!
They barely hit. When they did hit, they couldn’t bring in the runners. It was a very Oriole-like performance all around. And the White Sox did what a first place team is supposed to do to a last place team. Just another ugly night at Camden Yards.
Taking the mound for the Orioles was Jorge López, who was just as frustrating as we’ve all come to expect. He struggled a bit in the second inning but came away unscathed. Things got uglier in the third. López only gave up a single run, but needed 32 pitches to get through it.
With one out, Tim Anderson came up for the second time in the game and singled. One out later, José Abreu walked, which set up an RBI chance for Brian Goodwin. Goodwin doubled to knock in Anderson. López retired Adam Engel on a nifty play by Kelvin Gutiérrez to end the inning.
After a scoreless fourth inning whose worst part was a wild pitch that looked to me like Pedro Severino’s fault (he is not fun to watch behind the plate at all), things really fell apart in the fifth inning. Anderson started the inning for the White Sox, which means that López was about to see batters for the third time.
Here is a friendly reminder of what happens to López the third time through the order, from our friend Tyler Young:
López faced three batters in the fifth inning and didn’t retire a single one. He gave up three straight singles to Anderson, Yoán Moncada, and Abreu. The third single knocked in what was, at the time, the go ahead run for the White Sox. Things could have gotten a lot worse, but Brandon Hyde pulled López for Cole Sulser, who got the next three batters without allowing another run. Well done, Cole! But wait, he screwed it up.
Sulser came back for the sixth inning and walked two batters. That was it for him, but Dillon Tate was even worse. Tate was awful. The White Sox gave him an out with a sac bunt and he still couldn’t get anything done. Anderson, who was quite annoying in this game, hit a two RBI double and then Tate walked the next three batters. Three! The last one knocked in a run that made it 5-1, and a sacrifice fly made it 6-1. Finally Tate got the last out and we didn’t have to look at him anymore.
Not that it got any better. Tate was followed by César Valdez, who gave up three runs on three hits in the seventh inning. There was something to smile about in that inning, however. Valdez gave up a solo home run to Gavin Sheets. Sheets is a local guy who just happens to be the son of former Oriole Larry Sheets.
MASN cameras capture the happy father in the stands several times earlier in the game, and again looking joyful as he celebrated his son’s third career major league home run. The Orioles were gonna lose this game no matter what, so it was a nice moment to see.
Joining in the parade of terrible pitchers tonight was newcomer Shaun Anderson. Just claimed off waivers from the Rangers, Anderson fit right in. He pitched a scoreless eighth inning with two runners allowed, but couldn’t get out of the ninth inning.
With two outs and two runners on, Anderson served up a three-run homer to Engel that made the score 12-1. The next batter singled, and that was enough for Brandon Hyde. It was time to see a position player! Pat Valaika, come on down! Or, uh, over. He was already playing second base. Valaika got the third out of the ninth inning without incident.
I haven’t mentioned the offense yet and that’s really because there is nothing to mention. The lone Orioles run came in the second inning on a Ramón Urias home run. Other than that the only offense was several wasted opportunities. In the first inning, Trey Mancini doubled and Ryan Mountcastle walked, but they were stranded.
In the fourth inning, it looked like Anthony Santander led off with a homer, but on review it was correctly called a double. He was also stranded. Gutiérrez and Cedric Mullins started the fifth with back-to-back singles but Austin Hays grounded into a double play and no runs scored. Two more runners were stranded in the sixth inning. They went 0-for-8 with runners in scoring position.
The White Sox starter Dallas Keuchel got into trouble quite a bit but the Orioles just couldn’t capitalize. Because they are the Orioles. That’s what they do.
Orioles lose, 12-1. Just ugly baseball all around. They’re back in action tomorrow night with Thomas Eshelman on the mound. So, you know, that should go well.