Quick Links

Bullpen loses it, Blue Jays move closer to title


Bullpen loses it, Blue Jays move closer to title

BALTIMORE— In his first five starts to the Toronto Blue Jays, Chris Tillman gave up 31 runs in 18 innings. His sixth was a vast improvement, but the normally stout back end of the Orioles bullpen let him down.

Heading to the eighth, Tillman allowed just one run, and the Orioles had a two-run lead. Darren O’Day allowed an inherited run, and Brad Brad Brach gave up a run in the ninth, and the Orioles had their fourth straight loss.

Toronto’s 4-3 win over the Orioles before 19,093 at Oriole Park on Monday night, gave the Blue Jays a magic number of two to clinch the American League East.

If Toronto (91-65) beats the Orioles (76-80) on Tuesday and the Boston Red Sox again defeat the New York Yankees, the Blue Jays will have their first AL East title since 1993.

The Orioles have fallen into a third place tie with Boston and now must win their final six games for the fourth straight winning season.

“It's important for the Orioles to win a game every night regardless of what the consequences are. It's important for us every night to win a game. You don't think about the consequences of a loss,” manager Buck Showalter said.

“You try to do everything you can, We were very close tonight. Some good people for us who have done a good job for us, and some good people for them who have done a real good job. Tonight they did a little better job than we did.”

Edwin Encarnacion’s 36th home run, to start the second, was the the first Toronto run, and also the 10th homer Tillman gave up to Toronto. He’s allowed 10 in each of his 25 other starts.

Ryan Flaherty’s three-run home run off Marco Estrada in the second inning ended the Orioles’ scoreless streak at 29, four short of the 1957 club record.

Matt Wieters and Jonathan Schoop had one-out singles in the second, and Flaherty followed with a home run to left on Estrada’s first pitch.

It was Flaherty’s ninth of the season.

The Orioles had an awful weekend in Boston, suffering three straight shutouts, but after the second inning, they had just one hit, Wieters’ fourth-inning single.

Estrada, Brett Cecil and Roberto Osuna retired the final 17 Orioles hitters.

In their last four games, the Orioles have just 15 hits.

“Part of that is you have to credit the other guy who is on the mound. We’ve had some tough pitchers. Estrada was really pounding the zone. Anytime he wanted to throw a strike, he threw a strike,” Wieters said.

“A hundred pitches he threw but it wasn’t too high. Part of the credit goes to the other pitcher. The other thing is when you get a mistake, you have to do damage.”

Tillman allowed two singles in the fourth, but was helped out when Encarnacion hit into a double play.

Ryan Goins led off the eighth with a single, and after Justin Smoak grounded out, Darren O’Day relieved Tillman.

O’Day allowed consecutive singles by Ben Revere, Josh Donaldson and Jose Bautista to tie the score at three.

In 18 at-bats against Tillman, Bautista has four home runs and nine RBIs.

Tillman allowed two runs on five hits in 7 1/3 innings. He won’t have a winning record this season, but with perhaps one start left, Tillman hopes that his final starts can give him something positive to finish on.     

“It’s important. Everyone feels that way. Every time I get the ball I go out and try to do the best I can. I’m not doing anything different. I’m just getting results I want right now. I think that comes with making good pitches and I’d like to keep it going. But I don’t try and harder or any less any game I go out there,” Tillman said.

Estrada, who allowed three runs on four hits in 7 1/3, was relieved by Cecil (5-5) in the eighth. He recorded three outs.

Smoak’s slow roller to first scored pinchrunner Dalton Pompey in the ninth. Brach (5-3), who allowed hits to Dioner Navarro and Kevin Pillar to start the inning, had the loss.

“It’s always frustrating, especially when you do exactly what you want. You want them to hit a ground ball to first there, but they did just slowly enough to score the run,” Brach said.

Osuna recorded the final two outs for his 20th save.

NOTES: The Orioles have reached agreement with LHP Alex Wells, pending a physical and also signed RHP Mike Zouzalik from the independent St. Paul Saints. Zouzalik was 4-1 with a 2.06 ERA in 39 games. He’s also pitched in the Texas organization. ...Miguel Gonzalez (9-11, 4.85) returns from the disabled list to start on Tuesday night against Marcus Stroman (3-0, 1.89).

Quick Links

Orioles bats stay silent against Cleveland

USA Today Sports Images

Orioles bats stay silent against Cleveland

BALTIMORE -- Mike Clevenger pitched a two-hitter in his first career complete game, and the Cleveland Indians hit three solo homers off Chris Tillman in a 4-0 victory over the Baltimore Orioles on Saturday.

Jose Ramirez went 3 for 4 with his team-leading fifth home run. Yan Gomes and Yonder Alonso also went deep for Cleveland, which came into the game ranked second-to-last in the AL in runs and last in batting average.

Clevenger (2-0) hardly needed the offensive support. Pitching on seven days' rest, the right-hander struck out three, walked two and allowed only one runner past first base.

The only two hits he allowed were singles by Manny Machado in the fourth inning and Chance Sisco in the fifth.

It was Clevenger's 35th career start. His previous longest outing was 7 1/3 innings, earlier this month against Kansas City.

While Clevenger is unbeaten in 11 starts since July 31, Tillman has experienced an opposite fate. This was his 22nd straight start without a victory, dating back to his first outing last season.

Tillman (0-4) gave up four runs, eight hits and a walk in six innings. The three home runs were one more than he yielded in his first three starts this season.

Michael Brantley hit a run-scoring groundout in the first inning and Gomes connected in the fourth for a 2-0 lead.

The Orioles put runners on the corners with one out in the fourth, their lone threat against Clevenger, who responded by retiring Tim Beckham on a short fly to left and getting Anthony Santander to ground out.

Ramirez led off the sixth with a drive to left, and Alonso hit a two-out shot that landed on Eutaw Street beyond the right-field scoreboard.

Quick Links

Orioles pitching falls apart as Tigers complete sweep in Detroit

USA Today Sports Images

Orioles pitching falls apart as Tigers complete sweep in Detroit

DETROIT - Leonys Martin hit his first big league grand slam, Jeimer Candelario had four hits and three RBIs, and the Detroit Tigers beat Baltimore 13-8 Thursday to extend the Orioles' losing streak to six.

Jordan Zimmermann (1-0) gave up four runs and seven hits in 5 1/3 innings, allowing two home runs to Manny Machado and one to Chris Davis. Zimmermann was pitching for the first time since being hit in the jaw by a line drove off the bat of Cleveland's Jason Kipnis on April 11.

Alex Cobb (0-2) made his second start after signing a $57 million, four-year contract in spring training and his ERA rose to 15.43. He allowed seven runs - five earned - and 10 hits in 3 1/3 innings.

Machado had four RBIs for the Orioles, who were outhit 18-14 in the game and outscored 23-15 in the three-game sweep.

Victor Martinez hit an RBI single in the first, but Davis put Baltimore ahead with a two-run homer in the second, his sixth hit and fourth homer in 10 career at-bats against Zimmermann.

Detroit went ahead for good with four runs in the bottom half after third baseman Tim Beckham's throwing error allowed James McCann to reach base leading off. Jose Iglesias hit a two-run triple, Miguel Cabrera had an RBI single and Nick Castellanos a run-scoring groundout.

Machado's homer in the third cut Baltimore's deficit to 5-2, but Candelario's two-run homer extended the lead to 7-2 in the bottom half. Martin homered off Mike Wright Jr. in a five-run fifth.