Just two days after pinning a loss on Yankees closer Mariano Rivera with a ninth-inning homer, Adam Jones was answering questions about chasing pitches out of the strike zone tonight.
He was far from the only Oriole who didn’t come up big on offense, but Jones didn’t back away from the question after he went 0-for-4 in the O’s 8-4 loss to Texas.
“I saw it as everyone else saw it. I chased pitches I shouldn’t have,” Jones said. “Pretty simple. There is no equation to figure out. I chased them.”
Are the Orioles pressing a bit at the plate right now?
“No. We’re just not hitting,” Jones said. “It happens in sports. If you want someone to hit .400 all the time or .300 or whatever you guys label us to hit, it’s not going to happen every day. So, good thing about baseball, there is tomorrow. So be positive and come back tomorrow.
“We had opportunities and didn’t cash in. We cashed in on a few, but we let a few with runners in scoring position slip away and against this Texas team. You can’t do that.”
Is Jones confident the Orioles, who have now lost six of eight, will bounce back tomorrow?
“We have no choice,” the O’s center fielder said.
Manny Machado was asked about the play in the seventh inning where he struck out on a 3-2 pitch and Nick Markakis stole second. Markakis was then ruled out by home plate umpire Fieldin Culbreth and Machado was charged with batter’s interference.
“I thought it was a ball (for ball four), so I took a step going towards first base and he hit his hand against my elbow,” Machado said. “It’s a tough call, could have gone either way. I thought it was a ball and took a step. If I would have tossed my bat, I would have hit him in the shin. He did what he needed to do as a catcher and the umpire called it.”
The Orioles went 2-for-7 with runners in scoring position tonight and are 8-for-54 (.148) over their last eight games. How do they turn that around?
“Keep playing baseball. That is all we can control,” Machado said. “We’re just in a little slump right here and we have to keep grinding. It’s a long season, 162 games, not the 10 games where we’re struggling.”
The Rangers have gone 11-for-21 with runners in scoring position in this series to the Orioles’ 3-for-19.
Zach Britton took the loss tonight, allowing five runs on eight hits over five innings. He gave up a pair of homers to Adrian Beltre.
“I let Beltre beat me,” Britton said. “I did him some favors by putting guys on ahead of him. He’s swinging a hot bat. He’s not missing too many mistakes and he didn’t miss any I threw today. Can’t let a guy like that beat you and I did by putting some guys on ahead of him.
“Those were below-average pitches. If he beat me on two good pitches, I’d be happy with it. Those were two bad pitches. Second-guess myself going in (to the inside corner). That is not really my game, going up and in. It all goes back to putting guys on ahead of him, that is what really did the damage.
“As a starting pitcher, you want to give the team some innings. We know our offense will score runs for us. You have to outlast the other guy and (Martin) Perez outlasted me today.”