Saturday, July 14, 2012

Orioles start second half season with a loss; Hammel hurt...

The second half of the season for the Orioles commenced on Friday night; however, from the looks of it, the same old problems still afflict the Birds. They would lose the first contest of a three game series with the Detroit Tigers, losing 7-2.

They have now fallen to 45-41 on the season and are eight games behind the New York Yankees in the American League East.

Aside from the loss, the biggest news from yesterday involves Jason Hammel, who left the mound in the fourth inning. It looks like he hurt his knee – the same one that was giving him issues throughout the season. Hammel would leave the game with the Orioles behind 3-0; however, a four-run fifth inning finished them off for the night as the bullpen could not hold the Tigers.

Back to Hammel – if he is injured, the Orioles are in a world of trouble. This is a team seemingly full of flaws – suspect starting pitching, a porous defense, an offense that does nothing else but swing for the fences – and if Hammel’s injury is serious, the Orioles will have to hunt for a pitcher or see what one of their minor leagues can do. Perhaps Zach Britton – who has pitched well in Triple-A – or Brian Matusz will be promoted back to Baltimore.

This is not an ideal situation for a team hunting for a wild card spot. Sorry, the Yankees have the American League East locked up, barring a crazy scenario.

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