When the Orioles scored two runs in the bottom of the first inning last night, I thought that I might be writing about a three-game winning streak. When they scored five times in the bottom of the fifth to reclaim the lead, I thought that I might be writing about a three-game winning streak.
I couldn't have been more wrong.
The bullpen was overmatched with Kevin Gregg serving his three-game suspension, Koji Uehara having pitched in the last three games and Jim Johnson being the designated closer who never saw a lead in the ninth inning.
I won't judge Mark Worrell on one appearance, but I didn't like his chances with the bases loaded and Dustin Pedroia stepping up to the plate.
The eighth inning was a mess. It was an embarrassment. It was enough to make manager Buck Showalter want to appeal his previous suspension and get a few more games tacked onto it.
Showalter thinks his bullpen should be fine tonight. He didn't define "fine."
Jeremy Guthrie will try to avoid his 14th loss tonight. He's given up 12 earned runs and 14 hits, and walked seven batters, in his last two starts, totaling 10 innings. In between, he pitched in relief against the Red Sox, held them to one run over 3 1/3 innings, and took the loss.
Of course he did. That pretty much sums up his season.
Jacoby Ellsbury is 13-for-32 (.406) against him. Carl Crawford is 15-for-43 (.349).
There should be a few scouts in the stands tonight trying to determine whether Guthrie is better than his record indicates and if he's worth giving up a major league-ready arm or two.
The Orioles get another look at Kyle Weiland, who made his major league debut against them on July 10 and allowed six runs and eight hits in four innings. He's remembered mostly for hitting Mark Reynolds and Vladimir Guerrero in the hands and being ejected.
Reynolds was OK. Guerrero suffered a fractured right wrist.
I didn't detect any bad blood between the teams last night. The Orioles' bullpen emptied, but only because so many guys needed to pitch.
We'll find out today whether Luke Scott is coming off the disabled list, and whether Alfredo Simon is replacing Worrell on the roster. If Scott is activated, we'll find out which player is headed out of town.
The roster is due for a little more shuffling.
Update: Decisions on Scott and Simon won't be made until later today. The Orioles want to check Scott's right shoulder after he reports to the ballpark. He was removed for a pinch-hitter in the ninth inning last night in Harrisburg, but only because he was limited to four at-bats. He's homered, singled and walked twice in two games with Double-A Bowie.