Orioles 9, Red Sox 6:

  • Look who suddenly has the best record in baseball!
  • A long game is the last thing you need when your starter takes an early shower on a travel day. Both teams ran out of nominal pitchers despite using their last four bullpen denizens for 2 innings each.
  • Each side used nine pitchers and six of them for 2+ IP. The only other searchable game wherein 12 different pitchers went 2+ IP was in 1982, a 21-inning affair that ended with Bob Welch playing LF, RF and LF again (his only positional appearance in a 17-year career).
  • The O’s swept a series of 3+ games in Fenway for the first time since June ’94.
  • The last time Baltimore went 17+ innings and won, it was in the midst of a season-ending 9-game win streak that crowned them division kings. The time before that was during the same September. (And why don’t we hear more about this race? On August 28, 1974, the O’s were 63-65, trailing Boston by 8 games with two other teams between. They finished at a 28-6 clip to win the division by 2 games.)
  • Terry Francona remembers the last time Boston went 17+ innings and lost; it kicked off a 27-40 finish that turned them from division leaders into postseason spectators.
  • It’s the second 5-game skid for Boston this year. They had just two all of last year, and one in 2010.
  • Baltimore’s bullpen ERA fell to 1.41, more than 2 runs below the AL average. To put that another way: In 95.2 IP, Oriole relievers have saved 26 ER compared to the rate of the other AL teams.
  • Anyone know of the last road trip on which the Orioles won series at both Fenway Park and Yankee Stadium?

Individual notes:

  • Orioles Luis AyalaMatt Lindstrom and Jim Johnson and maintained their spotless ERAs, in a total of 41.1 IP.
  • Only two other hitters are known to have matched or exceeded the Adam Jones melange of 2+ GIDPs with at least one HR, double and steal. Both happened in July 4 losses. One was by Barry Bonds, who had just one other career game with 2 GIDP.
  • It only feels as if Robert Andino specializes in crushing BoSox pitching. In reality, his career BA, OBP and OPS against Boston is a little worse than his total marks.
  • Before Sunday, young Will Middlebrooks hadn’t hit a HR or batted with the bases loaded; now he’s done both. He knows what to do with a hanger, and it’s got nothing to do with breaking into cars in the Lansdowne Street Garage. (On second thought….)
  • Nine-oh-nine” is a decent Beatles song. But as an ERA, it leaves Clay Buchholz looking up at all other qualifiers. Out of 84 pitchers with 6+ starts so far, only Buchholz is still without a quality start.

More on winning “pitcher” Chris Davis:

  • He’s the first player since 1920 to go 0 for 8 or more and pitch in the same game. Besides Davis, the other four who’ve done that since 1918 all started and pitched at least 18 innings, and none got the win.
  • Before unveiling his hurling prowess, Davis was having a really bad day at the plate, not just in volume of outs made but also situationally. His Win Probability Added (WPA) of -0.554 was the worst of this season and the 4th-worst since 2010.
  • Davis joined Jim Thome and Bobby Darwin as the only players known to have 5 strikeouts and a GIDP in the same game.
  • One more AB would have given Davis a chance to tie the records for DH hitlessness and for whiffery.
  • The 0-for-8 dropped Davis’s BA by 27 points, but over a full season it will only cost him about 4 points.

More on the “designated pitchers”:

I’ve just scratched the surface, but let’s get the discussion underway!

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