For the second start in a row, Brian Matusz gave up four runs in the first inning. But he said when he took the mound tonight at Camden Yards the last thing on his mind was that outing at Texas where he allowed seven runs in 2 1/3 innings.
"For me, I don't hold on to feelings from previous outings. I got into some trouble in the first and almost got out of it. Just made a bad 1-2 pitch and left it over the plate. I was trying to go in on him."
He was referring to a 1-2 pitch in the first that Adam Rosales hit for a three-run homer that put Matusz and the Orioles in a 4-0 early hole.
"After that, I felt like I was able to settle in. For the first time in a while, I felt like I was really driving the ball down in the zone on a good downward plane. That was a very good feeling.
"Obviously it was tough to give up four in the first. But you need to try and keep the team in the game. I got into a very nice groove, pitching down and my two-seamer had good action. I was consistent for a while."
After giving up a second-inning run, the lefty retired ten batters in a row before giving up three hits in the sixth to end his night.
He allowed six runs and eight hits over five frames to fall to 2-5, 5.76.
So Matusz has now allowed 13 ER over 7 1/3 in those last two starts and has pitched to an ERA of 9.50 (19 ER over 18 innings) in his last four starts.
"Just in a bad groove. I'm not staying through the ball and not pounding the ball down in the zone. All the hits I'm giving up are on pitches that are up."
Matusz has allowed 32 hits over those last four starts as his ERA jumped from 3.93 to 5.76.
"I'm not going to get frustrated about it. I'm not happy with the first inning, but you have to forget about it and move on. I'd like to have that first inning back but I was able to make adjustments and later had good command of all my pitches.
"It's something to work off of. It's been a tough last few outings, but I have to be able to shake that off and remember that feeling of how I felt when I got in a good groove.
"The one thing I'll take from today is remember that feeling and hopefully get in that consistent groove."
Matusz is now winless over his last seven starts since beating Oakland on April 18.