How and why the O’s won two of three at the A’s to begin a nine-game trip out west.
Game 1: 9-2 win on Monday night (Aug. 3)
Game 2: 5-0 loss on Tuesday night (Aug. 4)
Game 3: 7-3 10-inning win on Wednesday (Aug. 5)
What I liked:
1. The offense in Games 1 and 3 – The O’s went 25-for-79, including 7-for-18 with runners in scoring position, in the first and last games of the series. Caleb Joseph had a two-run homer and an RBI double in Game 1 and a double and a single in Game 3.
2. Chris Davis – Crush crushed a three-run homer in Game 1 and a grand slam in the top of the 10th of Game 3. Davis also had a double in Game 2 and went 4-for-12 with two walks overall.
3. Jonathan Schoop – He had a double in each game in the series, going 6-for-11 overall.
4. Tyler Wilson’s start in Game 1 – With Chris Tillman nursing a sprained left ankle, the O’s recalled Wilson from Triple-A Norfolk and he delivered: two runs in 7 2/3 innings on just six hits and two walks in just his second major-league start. The O’s optioned him back to Norfolk on Tuesday.
5. The bullpen – Orioles relievers combined to allow two runs in nine innings, recording 13 strikeouts. Both runs came on a three-run homer given up by Chaz Roe in Game 2.
What I didn’t like:
1. Miguel Gonzalez’s start in Game 2 – He allowed three runs in 5 1/3 innings on five hits, three walks and a hit-by-pitch. Gonzalez is having an interesting season. His ERA+, which had been above 100 in each of the previous three seasons, is down to 92 this year. And yet most of his peripherals are in line with where they have been previously. The only substantial negative change has been an increase in his line-drive percentage (21.0% last season to 25.8% this season), but even that doesn’t quite explain his decrease in success.
2. Wei-Yin Chen’s start in Game 3 – He allowed three runs in five innings, giving up four hits, four walks and a wild pitch. Chen now hasn’t lasted more than 5 1/3 innings in each of his last three starts.