Some days, O's need to play small ball

Orioles manager Buck Showalter often talks about playing the game 90 feet at a time. But many nights, we see the Orioles lacking in the area of situational hitting.

They've been a little better at that in this series against New York, particularly Monday night, when they had a sacrifice bunt and two sac flies.

It was just the fifth time this season the O's had more than one sacrifice fly in a game.

There was also a key play in that game by J.J. Hardy that helped the Orioles score a run. He doubled to lead off the fifth and when Michael Morse hit a grounder to third, he advanced a base, running to the bag after Alex Rodriguez made his throw to first. Hardy then scored on a sac fly to produce a 2-1 Orioles lead.

Hardy said it was a play he didn't necessarily think about in advance, but he just reacted on the field.

He is believer in playing the game 90 feet at a time.

"I think they help," he said of such plays. "We score a ton of runs from the home run, so anytime you can manufacture a run like that it is just adding to your chance of winning."

Do the Orioles need to improve in this area?

"We need to get better at that and we are definitely capable of it," he said.

Meanwhile, Hardy was asked today about scoreboard watching. He doesn't do it, but he said that doesn't keep him from finding out how other teams are doing, even during the game.

"I think we are all different," he said. "There are people who are scoreboard watching throughout the game. I'm not. I find out from everybody else scoreboard watching and talking about it.

"I don't watch them (other teams) but there are plenty of people that do so I here about it from them."

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