Things were looking so good for the Orioles on Sunday -- that is until the fifth inning. The young, but powerful Tampa lineup bashed Brian Burres, who until then had pitched four solid innings of no-run ball.
B.J. Upton hit a three-run home run, Carl Crawford hit a two-run single for, & Akinori Iwamura drove in a run to send Tampa on the way to a 6-2 win.
Nick Markakis hit his first homer, while Brian Roberts went 2-for-5. Burres (1-1) was charged with the loss during his horrible fifth inning where was charged with all six runs.
Tall and huge (6'9"!!) Jeff Niemann pitched six strong innings in his big league debut, and he was masterful, only allowing one run on six hits and struck out five. He earned the win, and the aggressive Tampa Bay Rays took two out of three from the Orioles, using the big inning to down the Orioles.
Baltimore comes home tonight to face a Jays team that may be equally as tough as the Rays.
Monday: Albers (1-0, 0.00) vs. McGowan (0-0, 3.27)
Tuesday: Trachsel (1-1, 3.00) vs. Marcum (1-0, 2.57)
The Orioles are facing some good, young Toronto pitching, so this series will not be a cakewalk in any sense, and they have to jump on mistakes, or it may be a long night.
We all know the Jays can hit, so the Oriole pitching will need to be on top it's game. We know what we are getting with Trachsel in game two; however, I'm intrigued by what Albers can show us tonight. He has looked real good in the 'pen, thus, tonight will be an important test for him.
Lest we not forget, we found a diamond in the rough with Jeremy Guthrie in same scenario last season -- can we find the same with Albers?
MASN's Sports Amber Theoharis his her thoughts of yesterday's game from the sidelines; The Baltimore Sun, Washington Post & Examiner, & the Orioles.com have a recap of yesterday's game.
The Orioles Hangout's Nowick Gray takes a look at the rebuilding going on with the team; Oriole Central has a book review on his site of "The Oriole Fan's Little Book of Wisdom"; Camden Chat has a great round-up of the minor leagues; Roar From 34 has a nice piece on Joba Chamberlain and his dad (ok, he's a Yankee, but it's a nice writeup); HRB of Dempsey's Army wants Burres in the 'pen; the Wayword O has a funny look at how to recover from a losing streak.
Do you all not think we are probably better off not having extended Bedard a deal right now?