If Orioles fans are worried about anything these days, Pedro Strop might rank high on a lot of lists. This isnt scientific, but my Facebook timeline records bubbling unrest just about any time hes called in from the bullpen.
In Saturdays game, Strop pitched the eighth, giving up the tying run to the Red Sox and recording his seventh blown save of the season. Ultra reliable through most of the season, Strop has been less so lately. Hes had three blown saves this month, and though ERA isnt the best measure of a reliever, his is 6.35 in September. Strop has been charged with at least one run in four of his last eight appearances and has given up 12 total hits over those eight games. He also has walked seven in his past eight appearances.
Its a reflection of how clutch the Orioles have been in tight games all season that they have lost only once in those seven blown saves by Strop. However, if he isnt going to match the consistent shutdown innings that the Orioles have gotten from closer Jim Johnson, they could be tempting fate with their setup man, particularly should the Os reach the postseason.
Then again, maybe Strop is just part of this version of Orioles Magic.
The Orioles lost the series finale to the Rays Sunday afternoon at Camden Yards, but there was one silver lining from the matchup, and the silver lining was delivered by second baseman Hanser Alberto.
For the first eight innings Sunday afternoon, none of the at-bats by the Orioles produced a hit, as Tampa Bay’s Ryne Stanek and Ryan Yarbrough combining to not allow a base runner. That was until the bottom of the ninth inning when O's second baseman Hansel Alberto decided that his ballclub would not be on the opposing side of history, and hit a single against the switch, breaking up what would have been the first combined perfect game in MLB history.
Tuesday 7/16: Nationals vs Orioles, 1:05 p.m., Oriole Park
Wednesday 7/17: Nationals vs Orioles, 7:05 p.m., Oriole Park
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The Baltimore Orioles became the latest MLB team to have plans to extend the protective netting all the way to the outfield foul pole lines in the lower sections, according to reports.
This change appends the Orioles to a short list of Major League Baseball teams deciding to move in this direction, most notably, after the incident that occurred earlier this season in which Chicago Cubs' center fielder Albert Almora Jr. hit a foul ball in Houston that struck and injured a young child in the stands.
The young child suffered a suffered skull fracture and seizure.
“We are currently working with our experts and partners toward finalizing plans to extend the protective netting at both of our ballparks even further to each foul pole,” team spokesman Greg Bader told the Baltimore Sun on Friday. “In an effort to ensure we implement the right plan for those attending games at both venues, we are performing due diligence and will implement the plan our experts recommend as soon as possible."
The Washington Nationals, Chicago White Sox, Texas Rangers, Los Angeles Dodgers and Pittsburgh Pirates have also announced plans to extend their parks netting.
The new netting will be installed at Camden Yards and at the Orioles’ Sarasota, Fla., spring training stadium “no later than the start of the 2020 season, if not at an earlier point in time,” the Baltimore Sun reported.
Before the beginning of the 2018 season, the Orioles extended the netting to a few sections beyond the dugout due to a growing number of baseball fans around the league being injured by balls and bats.
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