Series Recap: Orioles end losing streak but drop series against White Sox

The atrocious Yankees series is finally behind them, but the disappointing pitching and injury bug continued to linger into the Orioles’ series against the White Sox.  The offense continued to face uphill battles and only managed to come back from one of the major deficits.

The series started on Monday as Wade Miley took the mound and proceeded to do his best Chris Tillman impression, giving up six runs on six hits in just 2.1 innings. Unlike the games against New York, the offense was able to put up a surplus of runs but it wasn’t enough to bail out the pitching. The Orioles scored seven runs but the bullpen was still too overworked and incompetent to hold a struggling White Sox team down.

Ubaldo Jimenez gave up three runs in his 3+ innings of relief and Miguel Castro added another run, giving the White Sox a 10-7 victory.  Chris Davis was forced to exit Monday’s game with a right oblique strain. After sitting out on Tuesday, Davis was placed on the 10-day DL.

Tuesday’s game didn’t go any better. Alec Asher was able to pitch through the fifth inning, but he also gave up six runs along the way. Richard Bleier and Jimmy Yacabonis combined to pitch three innings of scoreless relief but the damage had already been done.

A grand slam by Matt Davidson in the sixth inning blew Chicago’s lead wide open. The O’s offense was shut down through the final eight innings after getting on the board in the first with an RBI single from Manny Machado. The White Sox never looked back after the grand slam and picked up a 6-1 win.

Wednesday’s game was delayed for about an hour and a half prior to the first pitch due to rain. Perhaps a cancelled game would have done the Orioles a favor considering how overworked the bullpen has been in the past few weeks. The game was able to begin around 9:40 pm and it started as bad as you would expect.

The White Sox had a 5-1 lead by the second inning and the frustration was setting in once again. Dylan Bundy was able to battle through five innings despite giving up the surplus of runs early on.

The Orioles comeback effort started in the fourth when Welington Castillo picked up an RBI on a fielder’s choice. Hyun Soo Kim kept things going, batting in two runs later in the fourth, bringing the O’s to within one run of Chicago.

In the fifth inning, Castillo came through once again. This time he did a lot more than ground into a fielder’s choice. With Mark Trumbo, Trey Mancini, and Jonathan Schoop on base, Castillo launched the first grand slam of his career and gave the Orioles a 8-5 lead.

The Birds added two more runs in the sixth inning while the bullpen performed surprisingly well, giving up just one run in the final four innings. Needless to say, this 10-6 win was huge for a team that has looked completely lost and uninspired for the past week.

With Wednesday’s game being delayed, Thursday afternoon’s series finale was played on short rest. Chris Tillman was on the mound for the Orioles and, to many fans surprise, turned in the best start of the past week. The struggling veteran made his way through 5.1 innings while giving up three runs.

Tillman finished the fifth with a pitch count of 100 and had only given up one run at the time. Buck Showalter allowed him to come out for the sixth, but that was likely too high of an order for a pitcher trying to get his season back on track.

Jimmy Yacabonis took over and quickly gave up two runs that would end up being attributed to Tillman in the box score. Miguel Castro pitched the final 2.1 innings and did not allow the White Sox to score again.

Down 5-1 in the ninth, the Orioles managed to score one run on a Castillo solo home run but fell way short of a comeback. The 5-2 win capped off an impressive series for the White Sox as they took advantage of a struggling Orioles team.

The Birds will return home to host the St. Louis Cardinals this weekend. There is no denying that the Orioles are much better at Camden Yards, so this home stand could be exactly what the O’s need to rebound.

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Series Preview: Orioles look for signs of life in Chicago against White Sox

CHICAGO, IL — Coming off an embarrassing series in the Bronx in which they were outscored 38-8, the Orioles will conclude their current road trip with a four-game set in Chicago against the White Sox.

The Orioles (31-30), losers of four straight, come into the series now in fourth place in the American League East. They are six and a half games behind the New York Yankees (37-23). Over the weekend, the Tampa Bay Rays (34-32) overtook the O’s for third place in the division.

The White Sox (26-35) are in fifth place in the AL Central. The Minnesota Twins (32-27) man the top of the division with the defending American League Champion Cleveland Indians (31-29) hot on their tails. Chicago is coming off a nine-game road trip that had them in Detroit, Tampa Bay, and Cleveland. The White Sox went 2-7 on the trip, which included getting swept by the Tigers.

Road Woes: Dating back to May 17, the Orioles have lost nine straight games on the road. The Birds are 10-20 on the road this season, opposed to their stellar 21-10 mark at Camden Yards.

Last Meeting: From May 5-7 the White Sox visited Camden Yards for a three-game weekend series. The Orioles swept the series, by scores of 4-2, 6-5, and 4-0. The Friday night game was the contest in which Wade Miley was struck by two line drives in the first inning and had to leave the game. Gabriel Ynoa made his Orioles debut in relief of Miley, and pitched six shutout innings. In the Sunday afternoon game, Chris Tillman made his season debut, pitching five shutout innings. Not much positive has happened since then for Tillman.

From August 5-7 2016, the Orioles played a three-game weekend series at Guaranteed Date Field. The O’s took two of three from Chicago in that meeting.

Game times & pitching matchups:

Game 1Monday, June 12, 8:10 pm – Wade Miley (2-3, 3.27 ERA) vs. Mike Pelfrey (2-5, 3.80 ERA) – MASN 2, 105.7 The Fan.

Game 2Tuesday, June 13, 8:10 pm – Alec Asher (2-4, 4.35 ERA) vs. Derek Holland (4-6, 3.99 ERA) – MASN 2, 105.7 The Fan.

Game 3Wednesday, June 14, 8:10 pm – Dylan Bundy (6-5, 3.05 ERA) vs. Miguel Gonzalez (4-7, 4.89 ERA) – MASN 2, 105.7 The Fan.

Game 4Thursday, June 15, 2:10 pm – Chris Tillman (1-4, 8.01 ERA) vs. David Holmberg (1-0, 2.74 ERA) – MASN, 105.7 The Fan.

Notes on the Orioles:

  • Over the weekend against the Yankees, Orioles starters combined to give up 19 earned runs. On Friday, Bundy allowed three runs over six innings, and then the tandem of Edwin Jackson and Stefan Crichton combined to allow five runs in the last three innings. Tillman allowed nine earned runs in his start on Saturday, the most he has ever allowed in a game. On Sunday, Kevin Gausman’s season struggles continued as he lasted just 3.1 innings after allowing seven runs.
  • The depleted bullpen’s problems only got worse over the weekend, as Darren O’Day was placed on the 10-day disabled list on Friday with a right shoulder strain. It is the third time that O’Day has been placed on the DL since signing a four-year, $31 million deal before the 2016 season, and the second time in that span that his stint to the DL has been a throwing-shoulder-related injury.
  • Manny Machado continues to nurse a strained left wrist that was sustained during Wednesday night’s 9-6 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates. Machado has missed four straight games and is still listed as “day-to-day.”
  • Chris Davis has a career .293 batting average against the White Sox, with 51 hits and 11 home runs in 174 at-bats against Chicago.

Notes on the White Sox: 

  • Former Oriole Miguel Gonzalez has a 3.55 ERA in two starts against his former ballclub, allowing five earned runs on 16 hits, one walk, and six strikeouts.
  • Three Chicago hitters have batting averages at .300 or above this season – outfielder Avasial Garcia (.332 in 226 at-bats), infielder Yolmer Sanchez (.302/162), and outfielder Leury Garcia (.300/180).
  • Four White Sox are tied for the team lead in home runs with 10 apiece – A. Garcia, infielder Jose Abreu, designated-hitter Matt Davidson, and infielder Todd Frazier.
  • Abreu has a career .356 average against the Orioles, with 31 hits and seven home runs in 87 at-bats against Baltimore.