With a second game coming today, Jason Hammel was in trouble early in today’s opening game. He was at 51 pitches through two innings and down 4-0. Not the way he wanted his day to start.
“After I was at 51 after two I was like, ‘Not with a doubleheader, I have to get deep.’ That would have been the worst thing to do, kill the bullpen on the first game,” Hammel said. “I was pretty happy with it overall.
“Actually save for one pitch or two or three overall. The three-run homer to (Andre) Ethier was really the only damage done. Think I did pretty well keeping the guys in it and gave us a chance to battle back. Nice to walk away with a win.”
Hammel was at 102 pitches after he escaped a jam in the fifth inning but needed 33 pitches to get the three outs there. He needed a fast sixth inning and got one, getting three outs on just 11 pitches.
“That was huge,” Hammel said. “I had two quick innings when I needed it. It was nice for Buck to send me back out after the fifth. I knew I was in the 90s (actually 102). I hate pitch counts, because I felt stronger at the end of the game than I did at the beginning. It was a confidence booster for him to send me back out.”
His day started poorly when Ethier crushed a three-run homer onto Eutaw Street in the first.
“I was upset, but you have to learn to shake that stuff off. Especially, the first inning. Give up a quick field goal and all the sudden your guys are battling from behind. That was the worst pitch I made all day,” Hammel said.
Nolan Reimold’s two-run double in the eighth broke a 5-5 tie as the O’s moved ahead. Reimold delivered off right-hander Ronald Belisario, going to right field with the bases loaded.
“It was a pretty good pitch,” Reimold said. “If I tried to do anything else with it I probably would have rolled it over or been out in front or something. That was probably the only place I really could have done something with it.”
He had a 2-for-4 day with a double, homer and three RBIs.
“This feels good,” Reimold said. “It’s been a slow start to the year (for me). I had nowhere to go but up. It was good to put together a good game and feel like I contributed to a win. Now get ready for the next one.”
Reimold is batting just .115 (3-for-26) when he serves as the DH and is 7-for-17 (.412) with two homers and five RBIs when he starts in left field.
“I like playing in the outfield. Get in the flow of the game; Get out there every inning. Good to get out there the last two days,” Reimold said as the Orioles improved to 9-7 with a chance to sweep this split doubleheader later today behind Wei-Yin Chen.