I wondered this morning whether last night's brawl would serve as a "rallying point" tonight. I warned that they could fall behind by 18 runs in the first inning.
Wrong and wrong.
The Orioles went down quietly, managing only four hits and losing, 4-0, at Fenway Park.
They've dropped six in a row and been outscored, 50-18, during the stretch. They've lost 20 of 26. They're crawling to the All-Star break. Staggering would look like a brisk pace by comparison.
The Orioles are 7-for-57 with runners in scoring position on this road trip. They've lost eight of the nine games. They're 15 games below .500. They've had to send down another young starter, left-hander Zach Britton, who expressed his extreme disappointment to reporters in Boston.
Nolan Reimold went 0-for-3 and stranded four runners, including two while representing the potential tying run in the top of the seventh when he popped up a 99 mph fastball from reliever Daniel Bard.
To the surprise of no one, the Red Sox scored a run in the bottom half of the inning.
Vladimir Guerrero went 0-for-4 and could be making his last start tomorrow as the cleanup hitter.
Boston starter John Lackey hit two batters, raising the Red Sox's major league-leading total to 50. The Orioles didn't retaliate. They didn't take a few steps toward the mound. But they did get a warning from the plate umpire despite not hitting anyone.
Every one of their games should come with a warning.
Watch at your own risk. And be aware of all the potential side effects.
Care to name a few?
Down on the farm, Triple-A Norfolk third baseman Josh Bell hit his 16th home run tonight. He also committed four errors, all on throws, to increase his total to 17.
Troy Patton threw three scoreless innings in relief, allowing only one hit and striking out six. His ERA is down to 1.91.
Catcher Jake Fox is 3-for-3 and was twice hit by pitches.
Durham scored five runs in the top of the ninth to tie the game and cost Steve Johnson a win. Jeremy Accardo allowed four runs (three earned) and three hits in one-third of an inning.