I passed along Scott Copeland’s reverse splits in my morning blog entry, suggesting that the Orioles might want to load up on right-handers against the Toronto starter. Left-handers were hitting .259 against him, but righties were batting .333.
With Adam Jones out of the lineup, manager Buck Showalter put David Lough in center field and inserted switch-hitting Jimmy Paredes as the designated hitter. He started Travis Snider in left, Chris Parmelee in right, Chris Davis at first base, Ryan Flaherty at second. Switch-hitting Matt Wieters is behind the plate. Only third baseman Manny Machado and shortstop J.J. Hardy were going to bat from the right side.
Showalter reversed my theory and the Orioles sent 12 batters to the plate and scored seven runs in the second inning to knock Copeland out of the game. Another reminder that games are played on the field - or squishy turf if it’s at Rogers Centre - and not on a stat sheet.
Wieters singled, Davis singled, Snider had an RBI single, Hardy popped out, Flaherty had an RBI single, Lough had an RBI single, Machado had an RBI single and Paredes hit an opposite-field three-run homer.
The Orioles will need all the production they can get, with Chris Tillman also lasting only 1 1/3 innings in his shortest outing since going one inning on June 5, 2014 in Texas.
Ezequiel Carrera hit a three-run homer in the second and Kevin Pillar following with a solo shot. Jose Bautista hit a two-run single off Tommy Hunter to complete Tillman’s line.
Hunter hadn’t pitched in the second inning since making an Aug. 22, 2012 start in Texas.
Tillman has made four starts against the Blue Jays this season and been charged with seven, seven, five and six runs. His season ERA swelled to 6.22.
The Orioles scored two runs or fewer in seven of Tillman’s first 13 starts this season. However, they put 17 on the board while he was in the game in his last outing in Philadelphia, and they scored seven runs today in the second inning.
Snider has collected at least one RBI in six of his last 10 games. He began today batting .283/.353/.435 in 12 games in June.
Paredes is 11-for-31 with seven RBIs in his last nine games.
Update: The Blue Jays scored the tying run off Hunter in the third and Jose Bautista hit a two-run homer off Brad Brach in the fourth.
Bautista has three home runs and 12 RBIs in 10 games against the Orioles this season.
Update II: Chris Davis hit his 15th home run in the fifth inning to reduce the deficit to one run, and J.J. Hardy tied the game in the seventh with a two-out single that followed Snider’s triple to center field. Snider’s ball took a bad hop past Pillar. Or was it a good hop?
Update III: Hardy came through again in the ninth inning with a tie-breaking RBI single off Brett Cecil, and Flaherty followed with a two-run triple, as the Orioles took the series with a 13-9 win over the Blue Jays.
Machado completed the scoring with an RBI single, his third hit of the game.
The Orioles (36-33) were 9-for-13 with runners in scoring position.
Flaherty had two triples in his first three major league seasons. He has three triples this month.