The O’s look to take the third game of this weekend series with the Rays as Brad Bergesen (0-3, 4.88 ERA) takes the mound against Wade Davis (3-2, 2.77 ERA). The O’s dropped the first two games of the series and have scored just two runs in the process. The Rays, however, haven’t had any problems scoring runs. After plating just three runs in the season-opening three-game series, they have scored 14 runs in winning the first two games of the series. It may be more of the same in today’s game considering how poorly Bergesen has done in his career against the Rays. He has a 9.00 ERA and hasn’t won any of his four starts against the Rays. Furthermore, the O’s have lost the last eight times Bergesen has taken the mound. Let’s hope things change on this fabulous Mother’s Day.
What a wonderful day for baseball. The pink bats, wristbands and cleats are in full effect on this Mother’s Day game. After allowing a leadoff double to Sam Fuld, Bergesen got out of the inning unscathed. Hopefully this will give him some confidence going forward.
So the press box may be the hot spot for foul balls today as there have already been two that found their way up here already. I forgot my glove, so if another one comes my way I may be in bad shape.
The O’s were able to get a couple men on base in the second, but then Cesar Izturis came up to bat. Needless to say, there is still no score in this game.
The O’s did well against Davis the first time around this season and got to him for four runs and eight hits through just 6 1/3 innings. So far, Bergesen is looking like he is going to give his offense the opportunity to win this one. Now they just need to take advantage and start hitting with runners in scoring position.
Brian Roberts drew another leadoff walk, but once again the O’s couldn’t advance him any further. This is not a good way to start off.
Johnny Damon led the fourth inning off with a double and Evan Longoria followed with an RBI single. Adam Jones had a chance to throw Damon out at the plate if he would’ve fielded the ball cleanly, but couldn’t get a good enough handle on it. Joyce doubled, Upton singled and the O’s now find themselves down 3-0. Now the O’s don’t have a choice but to get their bats going.
Now that’s what I’m talking about. After Luke Scott doubled and Jones was hit by a pitch, Matt Wieters delivered a two-run double to cut the lead to one. It would’ve been nice to see a few more runs considering the O’s had runners on second and third with just one out, but at this point we’ll take what we can get. The Rays now lead 3-2 after four.
Well, the Rays didn’t waste any time getting back the two runs the O’s scored in the bottom of the fourth. I don’t know what it is with Bergesen, but he just doesn’t seem to have any kind of rhythm on the mound anymore. Maybe he’s just not cut out to be a starter. He certainly hasn’t shown me anything this season that leads me to believe he’s going to be a consistent starting pitcher in this rotation. He hasn’t pitched more than six innings in his seven starts this season and continues to struggle getting batters out. He left today’s game after going just 4 2/3 innings and allowing five runs on nine hits with just one strikeout.
Derrek Lee hit his fourth homer of the season 420 feet to dead center field to bring the O’s within two. I like that the O’s keep chipping away at the lead, but it doesn’t work if your pitchers keep giving up runs.
Clay Rapada got into a bit of trouble in the sixth after walking John Jaso and giving up a double to Ben Zobrist, but struck Damon out swinging to end the inning with men on second and third.
It’s hard to grasp what kind of team the O’s are so far this season. They’ve shown signs of being a solid team and doing the little things well. But they’ve also looked like a team in disarray at times. I guess the only thing I can draw from that is that their inconsistent, which isn’t the worst thing in the world but it’s not going to win you very many ballgames either.
Meanwhile, the O’s are still down 5-3 going into the bottom of the eighth. Izturis and Roberts turned a nice double play to end the top half of the inning. It would be nice to get a few here and get back in this one.
I’m thinking the O’s will pinch hit for Izturis since he’s set to lead off the bottom of the ninth especially with the top of the lineup coming up as well. Koji is now pitching for the O’s and will try and keep the deficit to just two runs.
As I expected, Felix Pie hit for Izturis and led the inning off with a double. But, once again the O’s couldn’t capitalize as Roberts grounded out to third and after Markakis was hit by a pitch, Lee hit into a double play.
Poor starting pitching once again plagued the O’s as all five runs from the Rays were scored off Bergesen. The O’s offense didn’t get enough timely hitting, which has been the story all weekend. They now fall to 14-19 with a three-game set coming up on Tuesday against the Seattle Mariners.
Submitted by Steve Giles