The Orioles and Rays have now exchanged sweeps in 2011. Baltimore went into Tampa on opening weekend in April and dominated. This time it was the Rays’ turn, as they strolled into Baltimore and didn’t give the Orioles much of a chance to win.
The Rays have now won six straight games, eight straight road games, and have the most wins in the AL East. Meanwhile, Baltimore continues their inconsistent play. After series wins over Boston and Chicago, they’ve now dropped five out of six to Kansas City and Tampa Bay.
The Rays’ James Shields was the story of Game One. He continued the great start to his season, won his third game and lowered his ERA to 2.01. His excellent fastball/changeup combination held the O’s bats to just three base hits in 7.1 innings. Zach Britton pitched well for Baltimore, but was tagged for a 2-run home run by Brandon Guyer in his first major league at-bat.
Game Two was a blowout. Orioles starter, Jeremy Guthrie, allowed two 3-run homers, to Evan Longoria and Justin Upton, as the Rays ran away with an 8-2 victory. The O’s worked five walks off of Rays pitcher Jeremy Hellickson, but couldn’t cash in any of those chips. This game was basically over by the fifth inning.
The Mother’s Day game wasn’t a whole lot better for the O’s. For the second straight day, the Rays starter issued five walks in five innings, this time it was Wade Davis, but the Birds couldn’t recover from Brad Bergesen’s poor outing. B.J. Upton had four RBI for Tampa, while Matt Wieters drove in two for the Orioles.
The Baltimore Sun is hitting the panic button and I don’t really blame them. The Orioles offense isn’t improving and the pitching is slowly falling apart.
However, the lowly Seattle Mariners come to town on Tuesday. Baltimore needs to win this series, if not sweep it. The fan base, which was so enthusiastic at the beginning of the season, is starting to turn on the club. It has been an up and down start to the season, so let’s hope we get an up-tick this week before heading back to Tampa on Friday.
About the Author
Written by Sven Jenkins
My name is Sven Jenkins, and I’m an independent baseball analyst from Poughkeepsie, NY. I own 60ft6in.com and do freelance work for STATS Inc. In the past, I've done research for the St. Louis Cardinals and worked one season with Baseball Info Solutions in 2007. I have also spent many nights as an official scorer in the minor leagues and played NCAA D-III baseball at SUNY New Paltz. In the off-season I travel the world, having enjoyed over 1,100 days on the road through 40 different countries. You can email me at: jenkins AT 60ft6in DOT com.