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Gallardo's rough first inning leads to Orioles 7-6 loss

Gallardo's rough first inning leads to Orioles 7-6 loss

BALTIMORE—After Yovani Gallardo gave up three runs in the first inning, the Orioles quickly answered back with four of their own. 

Perhaps this was going to be another night where the Orioles took advantage of an inexperienced pitcher and continued their strong September run. 

Instead the four runs represented most of their offense, and they dropped a 7-6 decision to the Tampa Bay Rays before 19,233 at Oriole Park on Thursday night.

While the Orioles lost, the Boston Red Sox scored five runs in the bottom of the ninth to beat the New York Yankees 7-5. The Orioles lost a game, and they’re two games in back of Boston in the AL East. 

The Orioles (80-66) were 3-for-15 with runners in scoring position, and just 1-for-13 in the final eight innings. 

“It’s a tough loss because we fought back and had a chance there at the end, but we left a lot of opportunities out there today, but to have a chance there in the ninth inning, it’s all you can ask for. Didn’t come through today, we’ll look for tomorrow,” Matt Wieters said. 

For the fourth consecutive start, Gallardo (5-8) allowed a home run in the first inning. Gallardo walked Logan Forsythe and Kevin Kiermaier and Evan Longoria hit his 33rd home run for a 3-0 lead. 

“Just falling behind guys. That’s the No. 1 thing, can’t start the game walking the first two guys and then making the mistake there to the No. 3 hole hitter. It’s never a good start. Every time you make a mistake to a hitter like that, he’s going to make you pay,” Gallardo said. 

With six starters for the moment, manager Buck Showalter can mix and match, and he kept Gallardo out of the series at Fenway Park, and may again bypass him when the Orioles play four games with the Red Sox here again next week.

Gallardo was pitching for the first time in nine days, and for the fourth consecutive start gave up a first-inning home run.

“No, I’m not going to look too much into that,” Wieters said. “The greatest thing about Yovani is even when he gets backed into some tough situations, he can work his way out of it. The home run can kind of make that null and void. He’s good with guys in scoring position in leaving them out there. But one thing is keeping the ball in the ballpark is big for him because he can get out of jams when he needs to.” 

Blake Snell quickly coughed up the lead in the bottom of the first. Wieters‘ two-run single and J.J. Hardy’s two-run double gave the Orioles a 4-3 lead. 

Forsythe’s RBI single in the top of the second tied the score at 4 and Steven Souza, Jr.’s run-scoring double an inning later gave Tampa Bay (63-83) a 5-4 lead. 

Longoria’s two-run single in the fourth stretched Tampa Bay’s lead to 7-4. 

“It’s frustrating. It’s frustrating for sure. I’ve been feeling really good. I was feeling really good coming into this start today. It just wasn’t there. The command wasn’t there. For whatever reason it was, it can’t happen,” Gallardo said. 

Gallardo was removed after 3 1/3 innings. He gave up six runs on seven hits, walking two. He struck out a season-high seven. 

“We knew he’d be a little bit stronger with added rest. You see the strikeouts, but you also see him getting some balls where he didn’t want to get them. He didn’t have a real good feel for anything off-speed. I thought he was going to find his step a couple times, but he never really got into a rhythm, it seemed like,” Showalter said. 

Snell made it into the fifth inning when Adam Jones walked to lead off. Jonathan Schoop doubled Jones to third, and when Manny Machado struck out, Snell was removed for Brad Boxberger.

Boxberger (4-1) retired Mark Trumbo on a foul pop to first and Chris Davis grounded out to the pitcher. 

In the bottom of the eighth, Dana Eveland walked Davis and gave up a double to Wieters. Danny Farquhar grounded to first to score Davis, and Michael Bourn grounded to second, scoring Wieters, and it was 7-6. 

Alex Colome allowed singles to Schoop and Machado with one out in the ninth, but ended the game by striking out Trumbo and Davis to earn his 33rd save. 

“You can look at a lot of reasons why we didn’t win that game. It’s a team loss, and we’ll take it as that, but at the same time, we can’t dwell on that because tomorrow we might have the same situations and we have to have the confidence to go out there and hit the ball hard,” Wieters said. 

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Orioles agree to one-year deal with pitcher Chris Tillman, according to reports

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Orioles agree to one-year deal with pitcher Chris Tillman, according to reports

SARASOTA, Fla. -- A person familiar with the negotiations says pitcher Chris Tillman and the Baltimore Orioles have agreed to a $3 million, one-year contract.

The deal includes performance bonuses, the person told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Monday because the deal had not yet been announced.

Tillman was 1-7 with a 7.84 ERA in 19 starts and five relief appearances last year. He would be the second starter added by the Orioles in the past week after right-hander Andrew Cashner.

Tillman likely would join right-handers Dylan Bundy, Kevin Gausman and Cashner in the rotation.

The 29-year-old right-hander lives in Sarasota and had been working out at the Orioles' facility before spring training. Manager Buck Showalter watched Tillman throw and was impressed.

Tillman began last season on the disabled list with right shoulder stiffness.

"Better than he did last year at this time. I think he's got the chance to pitch well for somebody this year," Showalter said. "A lot of the challenges he had last year -- this time last year -- aren't there. Somebody's going to reap the benefits."

Tillman's is 73-55 with a 4.43 ERA in nine major league seasons, all with the Orioles. He won 16 games in both 2013 and 2016.

"He's a guy when he's healthy you can bank on him giving you 200 innings and keeping his ERA between a 3 and a 4," Gausman said. "That in the AL East is always going to be very valuable."


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Orioles Spring Training Schedule 2018

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Orioles Spring Training Schedule 2018

Live baseball is close to gracing our television screens again. The Orioles haven't had the most active offseason, to put it mildly. Fans are still wondering who will make up more than half the spots in this year's rotation, and Manny Machado's upcoming free agency is looming over every decision the organization makes.

Still, it's exciting to be able to follow the team again. Not every game is televised, so get ready to constantly refresh your favorite beat writer's Twitter account for all your updates.

Even without getting to watch the games, it'll be comforting to once again check box scores in the morning to see if Jonathan Schoop is building on his breakout season, or if top-prospect Austin Hays is all he's cracked up to be (spoiler: he is).

This year's spring training will be especially interesting, considering how many big-name players will be signing in the next few weeks. The O's haven't yet made a big splash this offseason, but with the sheer volume of capable players still on the market, you have to wonder if they'll try to sign some impact players at bargain values.

Typically, the excitement of adding a new piece to the lineup or rotation has to be reignited after a long winter off, but this season, those additions will be taking place while camp is already underway.

It's going to be a hectic few weeks as teams prepare for thier seasons, so bookmark this page to check on on the Orioles spring training schedule over the next few weeks as the team finally takes the field in 2018.

Orioles 2018 Spring Training Schedule

Friday, Feb. 23 (SS) - Rays at Orioles, 1:05 pm (MASN)
Saturday, Feb. 24 (SS) - Orioles at Phillies, 1:05 pm
Saturday, Feb. 24 (SS) - Twins at Orioles, 6:05 pm
Sunday, Feb. 25 - Orioles at Red Sox, 1:05 pm 
Monday, Feb. 26 - Tigers at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Tuesday, Feb. 27 - Orioles at Rays, 1:05 pm
Wednesday, Feb. 28 - Cardinals at Orioles, 1:05 pm (MLBN) (MASN)
Thursday, Mar. 1 - Orioles at Rays, 1:05 pm
Friday, Mar. 2 - Pirates at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Saturday, Mar. 3 (SS) - Orioles at Phillies, 1:05 pm
Sunday, Mar. 4 - Red Sox at Orioles, 1:05 pm (MASN)
Tuesday, Mar. 6 - Orioles at Twins, 1:05 pm 
Wednesday, Mar. 7 - Orioles at Rays, 1:05 pm
Thursday, Mar. 8 - Blue Jays at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Friday, Mar. 9 - Orioles at Blue Jays, 1:07 pm
Saturday, Mar. 10 (SS) - Pirates at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Sunday, Mar. 11 (SS) - Orioles at Red Sox, 1:05 pm 
Sunday, Mar. 11 (SS) - Phillies at Orioles, 6:05 pm (MASN)
Monday, Mar. 12 - Orioles at Pirates, 1:05 pm 
Tuesday, Mar. 13 - Orioles at Twins, 1:05 pm 
Wednesday, Mar. 14 - Yankees at Orioles, 1:05 pm (MLBN) (MASN)
Thursday, Mar. 15 - Orioles at Cardinals, 1:05 pm
Friday, Mar. 16 - Orioles at Mets, 1:10 pm 
Saturday, Mar. 17 (SS) - Blue Jays at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Sunday, Mar. 18 - Mets at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Monday, Mar. 19 - Orioles at Tigers, 1:05 pm
Tuesday, Mar. 20 - Rays at Orioles, 6:05 pm (MASN)
Wednesday, Mar. 21 - Orioles at Yankees, 6:35 pm 
Thursday, Mar. 22 - Red Sox at Orioles, 1:05 pm (MASN)
Friday, Mar. 23 (SS) - Rays at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Saturday, Mar. 24 - Twins at Orioles, 6:05 pm
Sunday, Mar. 25 - Orioles at Phillies, 1:05 pm 
Monday, Mar. 27 (in Norfolk, VA) - Orioles at Tides (AAA), 3:05 pm