Much of the time, people who are experiencing history don't realize it in the moment. This isn't just true for big events, but also for the little ones: the smallish, everyday stuff that everyone looks back upon with half-smiles and wistful thoughts. I think that people, for the most part, have an incredible inability to step outside themselves to see where they stand in the bigger picture of time. I haven't lived very long, but the longer I live the more I'm starting to see this less as a personal opinion (that others seem to share) and more as an objective fact.
Think of a moment in your past that affected you so deeply that you still remember exactly what you were thinking at the time. Who was with you. How you were feeling. How vivid the colors seemed. Was it a big event, or a little one? Was it a day you'd been waiting for for years, or did the Big Thing seem to come out of nowhere? Both count and both are very good, but I'd be willing to bet dollars to donuts that day started out just like any other day, as though it was a poorly written establishing narrative by a writer not worth the
ink pixels he wastes. People remember where they were when JFK was shot during 9/11, but personally my mind is populated with hundreds of events whose significance pale in comparison to such major world events, yet still hold just as much detail and life. Such world-shattering moments might shine like a brightly-lit planet at dusk. But the night sky is crowded with stars and constellations that collectively form a picture one or two single bright points never could. No one bothered to make constellations out of planets.
This series is a historic series. It took me a while to write that, not just because I couldn't figure out if it was actually "an historic series," but also because it simply doesn't feel right. Series in early May aren't supposed to be too important. The Orioles are rivals, but not really. These games haven't been too dramatic; except for the short length of the games, they've honestly been pretty boring to watch. And yet this whole situation is still one that will be remembered in baseball history books for a while. It'll be a trivia question, and if anything substantial comes from whatever is happening in Baltimore, a wrinkle in the status quo that'll be pointed to for a long time.
I find myself agreeing with nomo: sports isn't necessarily a salve that can heal an ailing city. If the Yankees had won the World Series in 2001, it would have barely been a drop in the bucket. But what does help a city rebuild is a sense of community, and sports absolutely can play a monumental role in that. The games in an of themselves are meaningless, how a group of people can react to them is everything. I hope that you all remember that this series truly was a historic one, despite all evidence to the contrary. I hope you all remember that baseball, this sport we all love, is just a game, but that this game can have an incredible and completely valid effect on people. And I hope you all remember that small moments, ones like today that seem forgettable and unremarkable, have the potential to set the night sky on fire for years to come.
God, Brett, just get to the damn recap
James Loney put the Rays out ahead early, right as Brian Anderson was busy talking about how the O's Chen has shut down the opposition this year. The Orioles are 0-8 when the opposing team scores first. Or should I say, were.
It was a Pedroia-esque laser that broke a scoreless inning streak of 15.
The Ballad of Logan Forsythe
The bottom of the third inning belonged to Logan Forsythe, who, already out-of-place during the shift, had to dive to his right to stop a ball from leaving the infield. Logan popped up, and made a strong throw to first to catch a hustling Caleb Joseph with time to spare. The dive was impressive, but the throw might've been more so. Loney barely had to stretch for it.
Forsythe was also able to snare a liner to end the inning too.
Forsythe's glory was short-lived. Logan, hustling right out of the box, hit a flyball that was just out of Adam Jones' reach. Rounding second with a full head of steam, Forsythe dove into the third base well before the ball reach Manny Machado, but either he was running too fast or dove too later, because he slide right past the bag. Machado was easily able to place the glove onto his cleats, turning a surefire triple into a double and an out. Adding insult to injury, Evan Longoria drew a walk and Joey Butler got his first MLB hit later that inning, pretty much guaranteeing that Logan would've scored. Instead, James Loney and Tim Beckham were retired, turning a promising inning into another goose egg.
Logan almost botched the fourth inning when he bobbled a slow grounder to lead off the inning, but he recovered and threw out Jimmy Paredes. Although Adam Jones singled to left and Chris Davis walked on an egregious no-call on Davis' clear failed check swing, nothing came of it. Karns put away Rays killers Steve Pearce and Delmon Young, and the inevitable was delayed for just a little while longer.
But Forsythe, King in the South (is that Dorne? I'll ask Manu) wasn't done. Singles by Kevin Kiermaier and Brandon Guyer put RISP for the Rays for (technically) the fourth straight inning. Does it count as a RISP if Loney touches second base while he circles the bases?
Logan, with two outs, hit a ball that was anything but hard hit that squeaked past the shortstop into left. Kiermaier was basically home before Travis Snider even threw the ball back into the infield. Longoria flew out on a 2-0 pitch (his frustrated cry could easily be hard on the telecast) but the Rays would pick up a bit more insurance.
The Kevin Cash Experience
Cash made the decision to go the bullpen in the sixth inning, closing the book on Karns' night. I have a problem with this. I don't mind, as a whole, starters getting an early hook, but this is probably one of the more extreme cases of that I've seen. Karns was cruising, allowing only two hits through five innings. Most important to my point, Karns was at 66 pitches. Pitch count shouldn't be a hard limit, but Cash has shown the early hook more often than not. He pulled Archer in Miami when he looked unhittable. He pulled Drew Smyly in after 4.2 innings in his first start back from rehab. He pulled Colome after five innings a mere two night ago, effectively switching horses midstream. I understand that there are excuses and reasons for these particular decisions but they do show a pattern of hooks for Cash. Decisions like that might seem fine now, but overtaxing your bullpen this early in the season might have less-than-ideal consequences in September. I guess we'll see, but it's now a pattern for Cash, and something to keep an eye on.
In the highest leverage inning thus far, Brandon Gomes allowed a bunt single to Manny Machado, and despite a fine play by Tim Beckham, Adam Jones got a Rays-replay-assisted single up the middle. Cash called to Xavier Cedeno to pitch to Chris Davis. After falling behind 3-1 (on a questionable call by home plate umpire Rob Drake), Cedeno came back to strike out Davis.
Geltz came in after that and allowed a single to the pinch-hitting Rey Navarro, scoring Machado. Souza had a chance to throw him out, but his throw skipped across the turf, slowing it down just enough for Machado to slide past Rivera. Souza has not shown much prowess with his arm in right field, and for a team that has had excellent outfield defense for a couple of years, it's a little jarring to see. Geltz temporarily stopped the bleeding by striking out Delmon Young, but the O's managed to strike back.
Riding the Bullpen
The O's would take the lead in the bottom of the seventh inning on the carousel of Rays relievers. Geltz allowed a leadoff single but got the next two guys out fairly easily. With two outs, Geltz pitched around Machado and walked him on four pitches. Kevin Jepsen got the call, and on the first pitch of the night, the hot-hitting Paredes lined a ball just past the diving Longoria to score David Lough. Next batter: Adam Jones. Already 3-for-3, Jones hit one up the middle, scoring two more runs to put the Orioles up 4-2. After another hit by Chris Davis, Cash went to the bullpen again, calling for Erasmo Ramirez. Erasmo retired all four men he faced, but the offense could get very little going, and the team fell 4-2.
After Game One, it seemed like the Rays might be able to at the very least win the series, with Archer and Karns leading the charge. They had their chances, but failed on back-to-back days. Today's loss does hurt, but the Rays have a chance to beat up on the AL East when they travel to Boston to face arguably the worst three starters of Boston's ailing pitching crew. Tomorrow's game starts at 7:10 PM at Fenway, where Jake Odorizzi takes the hill against Clay Buchholz.
|Roll Call Info|
Also MrWizzle21 was totally here, let's make that perfectly clear