Simon still searching for consistency (Guerrero ties Bagwell)

Alfredo Simon has come back out to start the fifth inning, but he’s already allowed two home runs to Erick Aybar and one to Vernon Wells, and the Orioles trail the Angels, 6-1, in a game that’s moving slower than the Griswolds after they arrive at Wally World.

Manager Buck Showalter has Brad Bergesen warming in the bullpen again, so Simon is near the end of a very disappointing afternoon. He’s surrendered six runs and seven hits, with one walk, four strikeouts, a wild pitch and a hit batter. He threw 78 pitches, 48 for strikes, heading into the fifth.

The only positive, in my mind, was the fastball that Simon planted in Mark Trumbo’s back pocket. Not that I condone violence, but it wasn’t aimed at Trumbo’s head and the Orioles needed to make some sort of statement after Ervin Santana used them for target practice.

Simon held the Rays to two runs over seven innings in his last start. He struck out a career-high nine batters. But he can’t get on any sort of a starter’s roll, which is influencing whether he’ll have a starter’s role in 2012.

Update: Simon allowed six runs and eight hits in five innings, with one walk and five strikeouts. He threw 96 pitches, 60 for strikes.

The Angels scored twice off Bergesen in the sixth on Vernon Well’s two-out, two-run double, and Zach Phillips has replaced him.

Bergesen nailed Jeff Mathis in the head with two outs. There’s no way it was intentional, and Bergesen crouched on the mound as Mathis hit the dirt.

Mathis got up quickly and trotted to first base. Bergesen wasn’t ejected. Neither was Showalter. I thought it was automatic after both benches were warned, but it’s up to the umpire.

Update II: Vladimir Guerrero homered to center field in the sixth inning to reduce the Angels’ lead to 8-2. Estimated distance: 420 feet.

Guerrero has 449 career homers, tying him with Jeff Bagwell for 35th place on the all-time list.

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