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After a four-start stretch where he didn't pitch past five innings, Jake Arrieta produced his first quality start since mid-June today in the Orioles' 4-0 loss to Boston.
"Think overall, did a good job of pounding the zone and forcing the issue of contact," Arrieta said after giving up nine hits and three runs over seven innings. "Making them earn their hits and they put some good swings on pitches. Several guys in that lineup are hot right now.
"Ellsbury is the guy that hurt me today. When you give up solo homers, it will not make the difference in the game for the most part, but it did today. We were up against a guy that was effective today. This was a tough loss."
Jake Arrieta expresses satisfaction with his outing in the O's 4-0 loss to Boston
For the first time all year he did not walk a batter. Before the game Buck Showalter talked about some mechanics adjustments Arrieta was making to find better control and command.
"Made a conscious effort at that pretty much all week (a no walk game). I put some time in on the side to correct some mechanical issues and it allows me to throw more consistent strikes," Arrieta said. "I corrected my alignment to the plate with a more direct path to the catcher as opposed to offset to the right a little bit.
"I think the command is always there, it's just a matter of being on line to the plate. Sometimes that causes my sinker to miss off the plate."
But after pitching to an ERA of 6.18 over his last 10 starts, Arrieta gave his team quality innings today and for him, it's something to build on.
"It's encouraging and definitely a step in the right direction. But I am not satisfied, there is always room for improvement with every facet of the game for me," Arrieta, now 9-7 with an ERA of 5.02, said.