Take a Step Back
As I said in an earlier entry, the next few weeks may be scarce interms of my entries, and most likely will not have game summaries and info on a daily basis. Still trying to get out a post every day or two about different topics. Since I have baseball games myself also, I did not get to catch the first few innings of each Yankee game, so that’s another reason why I am behind.
As for this entry. I have a question for the O’s. What the hell happened? The whole Boston series, the team looked legitimate. May have lost 2 of 3, but were in all 3 games, showed tons of patience and hitting, and kept up with positive starting pitching. The bad part was the bullpen, specifically Albers who blew the two games we lost in that series. The good part was that the bats were coming alive. We were having double digit hit games, multi-hit games for a lot of guys, and the bats of Markakis and Jones looked to be coming back.
The O’s arrived back in Baltimore, and decided to just stick with the trends from the beginning of the season after beating the Yankees on Tuesday. While Sabathia and Burnett were on top of their games, specifically Burnett who pitched his best stuff in a long time (unfortunately it had to come against us), but why did the bats just die. At least against Sabathia we got some hits, but it just looked flat out horrible. We lost the touch that the guys were able to find against the Red Sox on Sunday and the Yankees on Tuesday to bring guys in who were on base and not rack up the LOB statistic. Wednesday went back to the old crap where we get hits all spread apart and not score. Last night was just horrific. We had 3 total hits, and the whole lineup just looked out of it, specifically Wieters. The last two nights he has look mezmorized at the plate. Not sure what is going on, but I am hoping Crowley can help him get back on track to hitting .300+. He dropped below .300 last night, which is hard to see when he was one of the positive aspects of our offense before. Wigginton continued his hitting with one hit in each of the two past games. Who would have guessed Cesar Izturis would be our hottest bat at any time in the season. More to come on him later. I want to write a post about it, but might wait to see how he does vs. Lackey tonight.
The bullpen went back to the ‘Opposite Day’ concept. Here is what the stats and happenings are for the bullpen guys:
-Albers has pitched 2.1 innings (1 IP Wed. and 1.1 IP Thurs.) and in those outings only let one hit thru and got a K. He looks to have gotten his fastball under control. That is a good sign since he is a guy the team is hoping to build with for the future in the ‘pen.
-Castillo was brought up and had solid innings before yesterday of strikeouts and no runs. Unfortunately for him, he was brought in to face Robbie Cano, who smacked his 2nd HR of the night off of Castillo’s low speed side arm on the 2nd pitch.
-Hendrickson and Meredith both pitched an inning on Wednesday. The difficult part of this one is that neither looked bad. They both looked on top of their stuff, just the Yankees lineup is overpowering and talented. Luckily, between the 2.1 innings they pitched, they only let up 1 ER, but had 7 hits combined. Would have been more runs but Hendrickson inherited some Guthrie allowed hits.
-Berken and Ohman came in for 9th inning pitching in the 2 games. Berken smoothly got 2 outs, and Ohman got 3 with 2 Ks and 1 H. Sad that they couldn’t be for saves.
Just looks like the pitching is going downhill. Starters haven’t looked stellar. Sorry to Matusz, but you threw some ugly pitches. Overall, still looked great, but against a team like the Yankees, you can’t even give up one bad pitch without paying the price. Guthrie just was disgusting.
Hopefully this weekend the O’s can rebuild on their offense and the power they have shown a little bit lately. My hopes are for Wieters to get back with it, Jones to have a 3-3 or 4-4 night (he sincerely needs it), and Markakis keeps the slugging up. The reason I think those things are most important are because they are the heart of the lineup and that has been troubling all season.