Rob Long: Don’t Change That Channel
I spoke with several of my friends on Wednesday night and Thursday morning and there seems to be a few people who have lost faith.
Chris Davis leads off the ninth with a solo homerun to bring the Baltimore Orioles to within one run of the Boston Red Sox. There’s hope, right?
Then, after Matt Wieters strikes out swinging and J.J. Hardy fouls out to third, it looked as if the O’s were going to drop their fourth consecutive game with this 5-4 loss. Ryan Flaherty was “0-for” on the season and no one expected him to deliver here.
I must admit, I watched it out of obligation, not really believing he would get his first hit of the year either. He did on a soft liner to left field. I perked up and thought, “Okay, good job kid.”
There has been frustrated expressed by the fans with the lack of “manufacturing” runs. The complaint has been that Buck Showalter relies too much on homeruns to score. Yet, with two outs in the ninth inning and the O’s down one, Buck used a pinch-runner in Alexi Casilla for Flaherty who steals second to put himself in scoring position.
After Nolan Reimold walked, Buck put more speed on the bases by putting Chris Dickerson on first.
Nate McLouth had a good at bat and walked to load the bases to bring Manny Machado up. If you were watching, you witnessed Oriole Magic when reliever Joel Hanrahan threw a wild pitch on a slider down and away to Machado to score Casilla and tie the game at five.
For some reason, I didn’t feel the inning was going to end there. Maybe it was wishful thinking but I felt Manny was going to deliver somehow, even if it was by drawing a walk to get Nick Markakis up, there was no way Machado was going to be the last at bat of the inning.
Manny did deliver. He hit a shot over the Green Monster to complete a five run ninth. A game that looked as if Tommy Hunter threw away by giving up back to back “Jacks” in the bottom of the sixth inning turned into a dramatic come from behind win by the Baltimore Orioles. And just think, some of you missed it.