Written by Tony Pente
Orioles bats unclutch in 3-2 loss to Giants
The Orioles turned in a terrible clutch hitting performance against Giants pitching as they fell 3-2 this afternoon in San Francisco. The Orioles hitters went a combined 0-for-8 with RISP and left ten runners on base. Wei-Yin Chen was just about unhittable through five innings of work but came unglued a bit in the sixth as the Giants scored three runs on four hits and an intentional walk for all of their offensive output.
- Wei-Yin Chen started off hot needing only 52 pitches through the first five innings while retiring 13 in a row at one point until Andres Torres led off the 6th inning with a single. That opened up the flood gates though as Chen allowed three runs in the 6th inning on four hits and an intentional walk. During that inning, Chen walked Posey to load the bases after Brandon Belt hit a long ground rule double. That brought up Hunter Pence who took a 2-1 outside fastball and lined it just fair down the right field line for a double, scoring two and making it 3-1 Giants. Despite just throwing 74 pitches, Buck pinch hit Brian Roberts for him to start off the 7th inning who promptly hit a lazy fly ball to left for an out.
- Final line, 6 IP, 5H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 2K. 72 pitches (47 strikes)
- Francisco Rodriguez came on in the 7th inning and after retiring the first two batters, allowed a double just inside the bag. He then struck out Scuturo on a 3-2 curveball. Rodriguez did a much better job of keeping his fastball down and even the double was hit on a pretty good pitch.
- Darren O’Day came on and struck out the first two batters on six pitches and went 0-2 on Buster Posey for eight straight strikes. After missing on two high fastballs he struck out Posey to complete the strike out the side.
- Manny Machado, who came into the game hitting .367/.406/.567/.973 over his last seven games in August, was called out on a strikes on a low and in curveball in his first at bat that was definitely a head scratcher CJ Buckner strike. It was the beginning of a bad day for Machado who went 0-for-5 with two K’s.
- In his first at bat, Adam Jones struck out swinging on a 1-2 outside slider that didn’t even start off as a strike. The pitch got a 31 (on a scale of 1-100) nastiness factor by pitch fx. In his second at bat he fouled off a 3-2 outside slider before hitting a sacrifice fly on another slider to give the Orioles a 1-0 lead.
- Nick Markakis, who was batting .226/.311/.226/.538 in his last 14 games, was moved from the 3rd to the 5th spot in the order by Buck for the first time this season and for only the 3rd time in his career. In the 8th inning Markakis had a nine-pitch at bat in which he eventually scooted a 93 MPH 3-2 fastball into right field for single. He ended up going 3-for-4 out of the five hole.
- To lead off the 8th inning, Chris Davis hit a 448 foot home run to dead center off Santiago Casilla, breaking a 15 inning scoreless streak for Casilla. He came up as the go ahead run in the 9th inning but grounded out weakly to second base to end the game.
- Henry Urrutia who was 0-for-5 as a pinch hitter singled in the 9th for his first pinch hit of his career.
- With Nate McLouth on first base, Brandon Belt made a diving play in the 3rd inning to rob Chris Davis of a base hit but when he tried to throw to second base, McLouth alertly did not slide and the ball bounced off his hip and went into center field for two base error. Jones then hit a sacrifice fly to score McLouth and give the Orioles 1-0 lead.
Key Moments in game:
- The Orioles left the bases loaded in the 2nd inning when Taylor Teagarden was unable to put the ball in play and Giants starter Chad Gaudin then took six pitches to get Chen to ground out to end the inning.
- With the game tied in the 6th inning 1-1, Buck choose to walk Buster Posey intentionally to load the bases for Hunter Pence. After getting ahead 2-1, Hunter reached out and took a pretty good outside fastball and lined it into the right field corner to score two and make it 3-1.
- In the top of 8th inning with the score 3-2, the Orioles put runners on first and second with one out after Markakis singled and JJ Hardy reached on an infield hit. Ryan Flaherty though was called out on a top of the strike zone curveball for out number two before pinch hitter Matt Wieters did his best Teagarden impression and struck out with the tie run on second.
Observations and musings
- Taylor Teagarden as an Oriole: .147/.194/.304/.498 coming into today. I know Buck has his guys but he’s literally one of the worse hitter in the major leagues. There are 20 major league pitchers who have gotten more than 100 plate appearances over the last two years that have a higher OPS than Teagarden. Batting Teagarden in a National League park is akin to starting a lineup with two pitchers.
- Although Pence hit the two-run double in the 7th inning, Buck managed the situational correctly by not letting Posey beat them with a base open.
- You don’t win many games when you go 0-for-8 with runners in scoring position like the Orioles did today. Teagarden left five runner on base and Flaherty left four.
- The bottom of the order, Flaherty, Teagarden (Wieters in 8th)and Chen left a combined 14 runners on base.
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