BALTIMORE—The Orioles scattered for a few days. Five go off for the All-Star Game. Others went to their offseason homes or vacation spots. A few will just rest.
They end the first half with a two-game lead in the American League East, and with a stellar 33-14 record at home.
In a fascinating first half of the season with starting pitching often vexing the Orioles, the one constant has been Chris Tillman. .
Tillman wasn’t named to the American League All-Star team. That’s fine because he wouldn’t have been able to pitch anyway.
The Orioles were happier that Tillman was available to pitch in the last game before the break, and he ends it was a stellar 12-2 record.
Tillman allowed one run on three hits and though he did walk five, the Orioles came through with a 4-2 win over the Los Angeles Angels before 32,963 at Oriole Park on Sunday.
After walking Kole Calhoun with one out in the first, Mike Trout hit a drive to right that Mark Trumbo threw to Jonathan Schoop at second. Schoop’s throw home was caught by Matt Wieters, who tagged Calhoun.
Home plate umpire Tim Timmons called Calhoun out, but after a two minute, 40 second review, the call was overturned.
Tillman walked Yunel Escobar and Calhoun to start the third, but he struck out Trout and got Albert Pujols to ground out to short, starting a double play to end the third.
“The end result was good. We came out on top. It was a grind. It was a grind from the get-go. I was missing with all my pitches early. Fortunately, we were able to kind of get in somewhat of a rhythm and mix some pitches and get out of innings. To come out on top was good,” Tillman said.
Tim Lincecum (1-3), who was signed by the Angels (37-51) last month, allowed three runs to the Orioles (51-36). Chris Davis hit an opposite field two-run home run in the fourth, and in the sixth, Pedro Alvarez’s pop to short looked as if it was going to be caught by shortstop Andrelton Simmons, but he backed away at the last minute and it dropped.
Alvarez wound up on third after Simmons threw wildly on the relay, and J.J. Hardy’s single scored Alvarez.
Brad Brach, on his way to the All-Star Game, gave up an unearned run in the eighth. Calhoun’s line drive to right was misplayed by Trumbo, and he got to third on a two-base error. Pujols’ fly ball scored Calhoun.
Hardy added his third home run of the season in the eighth. It was his first home run since he hit two in Boston on Apr. 12.
Zach Britton, who is also going to San Diego, picked up his 27th save with a scoreless ninth. It was the 100th save of his career.
"That's a nice little number,” Britton said I think it's more of a credit to well Darren [O’Day] and Brad have thrown in front of me , and a lot of other guys too, to put me in a situation to be successful.”
Because Tillman pitched Sunday he was ineligible for the All-Star Game, but he’ll take the time off.
“It was not disappointing. The American League is a good league. There are a lot of good pitchers. A lot of guys that deserve it. We’ve got five guys going, so that makes everyone in this clubhouse happy. We’re well represented. I’m not disappointed at all,” Tillman said.
Showalter kept emphasizing the Orioles have 75 games to play.
“It's obvious what's ahead of us. A lot of challenges. But we have a chance to play meaningful games every day. They were in April, OK? So, they've earned that and they want it. They want to be in that cooker. That’s the difference between them and a lot of people. They want to play. They want to be in the arena, not watching outside in. Everybody would like to be in it, but they don't have the ability that they have. They want that. Have to cross a lot of roads to get there, though. A lot of roads,” Showalter said.
NOTES: Hyun Soo Kim left the game after the first inning with a strained right hamstring. He said it would be tested on Monday and hoped he wouldn’t miss any time. … RHP Jason Garcia was optioned to Bowie. ... Yovani Gallardo (3-1, 5.82) faces Chris Archer (4-12, 4.66) on Friday night at Tampa Bay when the Orioles resume play. … Escobar was ejected in the bottom of the seventh inning by Timmons. … The Orioles’ 33 home wins are the most by any team in baseball. Their 14 losses are tied for the fewest.