Orioles take one-run lead (now four-run lead)

The Orioles are 12-6 in the finale of a three-games series that decides the winner, going 6-3 at home and 6-3 on the road.

They split the first two games of this series against the Athletics, so that statistic is going to change.

Scott Feldman threw 29 pitches in a 16-minute top of the first inning. He walked two batters, committed a balk and gave up Alberto Callaspo’s two-out bloop single into right field.

Ryan Flaherty, running full speed, almost made a diving catch. If Nick Markakis hadn’t slowed up, it would have been a violent collision.

The Orioles scored twice in the bottom of the first off Oakland rookie Sonny Gray, and they used some aggressive baserunning to do it.

Manny Machado singled with one out and raced to third on Chris Davis’ single into left-center. Davis hustled to third on Adam Jones’ game-tying RBI single to right, enabling him to score on Matt Wieters’ fly ball to deep center.

Wieters has 63 RBIs this season.

Feldman threw only eight pitches in the second, with all three balls hit to Flaherty. You’d need Flash photography to capture the moment.

See what I did there.

OK, so the Orioles lead by one run. It’s early, of course, but they’re 14-23 in one-run games this season after going 29-9 in 2013.

According to STATS, the .385 decrease in winning percentage is the second-largest in the majors since 1900, behind the Boston Braves, who had a .590 winning percentage in one-run games in 1934 and a .184 mark in 1935 - a difference of .406.

You can look it up. But why bother?

Update: The aggressive baserunning continues to pay off for the Orioles, who lead 5-1 after two innings.

J.J. Hardy led off the second with a double, Ryan Flaherty walked and Brian Roberts delivered and RBI single. Flaherty and Roberts moved up on Nate McLouth’s fly ball to left-center field, enabling Flaherty to score on Machado’s sacrifice fly. Roberts took third on the play, and he scored on Chris Davis’ single.

Orioles 5, Athletics 1

Smart baserunning and smart at-bats.

When is the last time that the Orioles had two sacrifice flies in the same game?

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