Travis Snider on mindset vs. Philly and a take on Scott Boras' comments on Wei-Yin Chen

The Orioles are playing very good baseball right now. The Philadephia Phillies are not.

The Orioles crushed the Phillies last night, leading 12-0 in the third on their way to a 19-3 win. The night saw the Orioles set a team record by hitting eight home runs, and their 19 runs were the most by an Orioles team since they scored 23 on Sept. 28, 2000 against Toronto.

The Phillies have lost eight in a row. Over their last 12 games, they are 1-11. Over their last 12 road games, they are 0-12.

It's going pretty badly for the Phillies right now, and certainly players on the Orioles can empathize with big leaguers going through tough times as individuals and as a team.

But the O's still have to bring the right mindset for the next two games against Philadelphia. Will that be a problem for the Orioles after last night's blowout win?

"Absolutely not," Travis Snider said. "We are professionals, regardless of what the score or record dictates. We are trying to win games. It doesn't matter how well or how bad they are playing. There is plenty of talent on that roster to go out there and compete. For us, we have to focus on what we have to do to win games and not look outside of what we have going on in this clubhouse."

Manny Machado made similar comments. He said the O's can't concern themselves with the Phillies' issues.

machado-at-bat-white-day-game-sidebar.jpg"We don't think about that, we go out and play. Everyone struggles. We are doing well right now, and playing is the only thing we can control. We are coming up clutch hitting as a team right now," he said.

Machado hit two homers last night for his fifth career multi-homer game and third this year. Machado has hit safely in nine of his last 10 games, batting .450 (18-for-40) with a double, five homers and 10 RBIs. He has hit seven homers his last 16 games.

"He's got his swing back," Snider said of Machado's latest hot streak at the plate. "He's really developed in the one-spot for us. Being a guy that gets on base, drives the ball out of the park, he's doing it all. Fun to watch him play on a nightly basis."

The Orioles are the first team to hit eight or more homers in a game since Boston hit eight Sept. 4, 2013 at Detroit.

The Orioles finished their eight-game homestand with a 7-1 record (.875 win percentage), their best mark during a homestand of at least eight games since going 7-1 from July 4-11, 1977.

The Phillies allowed eight or more homers in a game for the first time since giving up nine Sept, 4, 1999 against Cincinnati.

Wei-Yin Chen's tweets attract attention: After the news came out that he was being optioned to Single-A Frederick last night, O's lefty Chen took to his seldom-used Twitter account to post this reaction:

* I am disappointed my routine is being interrupted. I will continue to work hard and do my best to perform. Thank you for all the support!

Chen's agent, Scott Boras made this comment to the Baltimore Sun: "To disrupt a season like this for a pitcher of Chen's status and to disrupt his routine, which is so important for a starting pitcher, is grossly irregular. I've never seen anything like this in the sport of baseball in my 30 years of doing this."

In my opinion, if Chen posted those comments on his own or if he was instructed to do so, he made a very bad choice either way. His routine is not being interrupted at all. He will pitch Saturday for the Keys and then rejoin the Orioles rotation on the 26th.

He's pitching well for the Orioles and deserves props for this. He's been a valued member of the team. But taking his opinion public and then having his agent say, "He's never seen anything like this in 30 years," is beyond ridiculous.

Boras is entitled to his opinion and has never been shy about expressing it, but his client is going to miss one major league start. The Orioles optioned Bud Norris to make a start at Double-A Bowie last year, which was during Norris' All-Star break when he could have been at a beach somewhere.

The Orioles needed a roster spot to add Chris Parmelee and doing that paid immediate dividends. This move allows them to have Chen take a short break in the minors to stay fresh for the long season.

I wonder if Boras considers that having Chen avoid facing Toronto right now might actually be good for his client. The Blue Jays are cleaning up this year versus left-handed pitching, leading the league with an OPS of .876 against southpaws. The next best mark in the league is Detroit at .764.

In four career starts against the Jays, Chen is 1-3 with a 5.40 ERA.

This move was not nearly the big deal that Chen and Boras made it. Are they trying to turn fans against Chen? Chen can be a free agent at the end of this year. Does this now mean he has one foot out the door?

The Orioles need to make decisions to give Chen the best chance to have a good season, and thus give the Orioles the best chance to have a good year. The Orioles have their team to think about. If that bothers a player and his agent, so be it.

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