The Rangers took three of four from the Orioles this weekend in Camden Yards, handing the O’s their first home series loss of the season.
If the Orioles are to be competitive at all these are the type of teams that they need to beat, but it is only April so we can’t put too much stock in anything now.
Here are my thoughts on the series:
Bullpen struggles continue:
Both Matt Albers and George Sherrill blew two leads that resulted in two losses for the Orioles.
Albers pitched yesterday and gave up three hits and three runs in less then an inning pitched.
Sherrill had been living on the edge all season and it finally backfired on him has he gave up a two run game winning home run to Michael Young in the 9th inning of Friday’s game.
Sherrill had a great year last season but I believe he did everything with “smoke and mirrors” and I do not think his stuff is closer worthy. I expect to see a closer by committee sometime by the middle of the season.
Baez and Bass shine:
Danys Baez looked like he might not even make this team this spring but now he is the Orioles best reliever. Baez threw three scoreless innings striking out three and yielding no hits to get the win on Sunday.
Baez bailed out Brad Bergesen who was sub par in his second major league start.
Early in the season, Brian Bass was the Orioles worst pitcher but it looks like he might have turned the corner. In this series Bass threw 3 2/3 innings striking out four and giving up no runs.
More importantly for the Orioles Bass has managed to keep the ball in the ballpark, something which he could not do earlier in this season.
Finally a Sunday win:
For the last 3 seasons I have been a Sunday season ticket holder for the Orioles and this past Sunday I finally got my money’s worth. The Orioles won their first Sunday home game since they beat Mariners in the second series of the year last season.
The Orioles lost 12 straight Sunday games last year and had a chance for the sweep in six of them. If the Orioles are to be competitive, they need to close out series, so this is not a meaningless stat.
Hopefully for the O’s and me, they can manage to win some Sunday games this season.
Bergesen comes down to earth:
After an impressive first start, Brad Bergesen was pounded by the Rangers on Sunday. This was only Bergesen’s second start and the Rangers have the best lineup in baseball so do not read too much into it.
Bergesen is probably the most talented pitcher on the Orioles starting staff he just needs to get acclimated to the Major Leagues. He will be up here the whole season no matter how he pitches but hopefully starts like his one on Sunday are not the norm.
The Orioles are now 8-11 and are struggling in a lot of aspects. This team can hit the ball but will need their starters to pitch at least 6 innings to keep the bullpen fresh.
This was a series the Orioles should have won but hopefully they can handle the Angels tonight and tomorrow.