Another bullpen blunder (and a loss)

Before tonight, the Orioles’ starting pitchers had posted a 3.43 ERA over their last 13 games, working at least six innings in 11 of those 13. They made nine quality starts in that period and had gone five innings or more in 17 consecutive games.

The bullpen, however was 1-2 with a 6.86 ERA over the last 13 games.

Brad Bergesen left tonight’s game after five innings with a 5-4 lead. Jeremy Accardo replaced him and served up a leadoff homer to Jeff Francoeur.

Bergesen was charged with three runs (four total) and six hits in five innings, falling short of a quality start. While Accardo can take the blame for surrendering the lead, the Orioles need their young starters to pitch deeper in the games.

Bergesen threw 94 pitches before taking a seat on the bench, which led to the nightly passing of the baton.

Michael Gonzalez retired the side in order in the seventh, striking out Alex Gordon to end the inning. He’s rocking back and forth and flying off the mound, but he’s also getting outs. Whatever works for him.

Update: Jason Berken escaped a huge jam in the ninth to send the game into extra innings, but a four-pitch walk to Alex Gordon leading off the 10th proved his undoing. Billy Butler singled to center field and Jeff Francoeur lifted a sacrifice fly to right.

Kansas City 6, Orioles 5.

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