Tuesday night’s start in Boston by Baltimore Orioles RH Ubaldo Jimenez wasn’t a thing of beauty, but it was good enough. Compared to his performances last year, it was Jim Palmer-esque.
Even though Jimenez labored through five innings, he got enough run support from his teammates to earn the W. CF David Lough blasted a 3-run, second inning home run to put the Birds up 4-0 and they never looked back in beating the Red Sox 6-4 at Fenway Park.
The Orioles have won 14 of their last 18 contests and with a record of 37-33, they are a season-high four games over .500. The win also gave Jimenez his sixth win of the season. The six wins matches his total for the entire 2014 season.
With a record of 6-9 and an ERA of 4.81 in ’14, Jimenez had a brutal first year in Baltimore. You didn’t need to be George Bamberger to understand that fact.
After a couple of rough outings in spring training this March, it looked like it was going to be another long season for the veteran from the Dominican Republic. Fortunately, Jimenez turned things around in a big way.
His command is better and because of that, his walks have decreased. With eight K’s on Tuesday night against the Red Sox, Jimenez has now struck out 82 in 79.1 IP. His ERA is 3.40 and his WHIP is down from last season’s 1.52 to 1.31.
Jimenez is 4-1 with a 2.48 ERA at Camden Yards in 2015. His road record isn’t as impressive (2-2, 4.35), but he did earn his first win at Fenway on Tuesday night.
There is no denying that Ubaldo has been one of manager Buck Showalter’s more reliable starting pitchers.
With Chris Tillman and Bud Norris still trying to find their rhythm, Jimenez needs to give the Orioles quality starts on a consistent basis to keep the rotation somewhat competitive.
So far, in 2015, he has been up to the task.