After giving up three runs in the second inning tonight and taking the loss in the Orioles' 5-2 defeat against Oakland, Orioles starter Jake Arrieta criticized himself for allowing the early big inning to the A's.
"I fell behind (Eric)Sogard there. Really wasn't able to make pitches down in the zone to him," Arrieta said after allowing four runs over 5 2/3 and throwing 105 pitches. "The walk to (Kila) Ka'aihue, a four-pitch walk. Mental mistakes there, no reason I should have a four-pitch walk to that guy or go 3-0 to Sogard. Just have to throw the ball down in the zone and not allow those guys to sit on certain pitches.
"Today, I feel like I wasn't very crisp. Didn't have many offspeed pitches to go to. But, still had useable pitches, just wasn't able to throw them for strikes. One of those nights where nothing felt right.
"Wasn't able to establish my fastball early in the game. I was burying most of the breaking balls and they were able to spit on those. I was able to get into the sixth. Tried to bury a slider backfoot on (Josh) Reddick but it found too much of the plate. I did keep the team in the game and I felt we were still in it until the last out was made."
Since working to an ERA of 2.66 in his first three starts, Arrieta has allowed nine runs over 10 innings in his past two outings.
"My stuff has been very good. I need to make in-game adjustments, that is big for me right now. Make adjustments on my own, rather than (pitching coach) Rick (Adair) or (Matt) Wieters point something out," Arrieta said. "Having that feel and being able to correct it on my own, I have to do it a little quicker now. I have to nip that in the bud and control the innings."
Arrieta, who is now 1-2 with an ERA of 4.45, has been done in by a big inning in each of his past two starts, in Anaheim Saturday and tonight.
"Yeah, a two or three-hitter stretch there where things really got out of control. Personally, I have to stop those things from happening. Being a guy where I am in the rotation, I am going against top-notch starters so that kind of stuff just can't happen. I'm aware of it and I'm going to fix it.
"I had 32 pitches in the second inning. At that point, I needed to get my team through six. I came up a hitter short. I have to put this behind me. Our team, we are rolling now, we are 4-1 in our last five and I'm just going to get ready for New York on Wednesday and try to forget this one," he said.
Adam Jones was asked about A's starter Brandon McCarthy, who got the win giving up just two runs over seven innings. McCarthy is now 7-0 in 12 starts against the AL East since 2009.
"He threw strike one. That is a key, most successful pitchers do that. He made us put the ball in play and pitched a good game. Tip your cap to him. Even though Jake gave up three or four runs he gave us a chance to win," Jones said.