Sunday, April 11, 2010
There are losses, and then there are LOSSES. This past week for the Orioles has been one of the most frustrating in recent memory; and that's saying something for a team that hasn't had a winning season since 1997.
The Orioles were swept away at home by the Toronto Blue Jays to end the first week of the season. The Blue Jays are expected by many to finish dead last in the American League East division, and for the Orioles to drop these three games against them in their opening weekend is absolutely horrible. The way they lost the three games is equally depressing. Friday night, their new closer blew his second save in three chances, and on Sunday afternoon Kevin Millwood pitched seven brilliant innings before giving up the go-ahead runs after an error by Miguel Tejada kept the Jays inning alive.
Throughout the weekend, the O's bats were dead silent. The Orioles began Sunday hitting 8-46 with runners in scoring position, and it continued Sunday. The O's were shutout on Saturday, and did not score after the first inning on Sunday. Adam Jones, Nick Markakis, and many others have been in super slumps to begin the year. It doesn't help that Brian Roberts is hurt, but he will be out close to three weeks. The team needs to get used to playing without him.
It's frustrating to go through two years of rebuilding and seeing young, talented players come up. The time for winning has come, and three or four games have already been blown to create a 1-5 start. It's almost like the players are completely frozen by the fact that the time is to now win. Could losing just be the culture? They seem to do almost every little thing wrong to lose a game at the end. Whether it be a missed groundball, not taking an extra base, not scoring from third with no outs. There must be forces creating this, right?
The question is if manager Dave Trembley will take the fall. I believe the team needs a bona fide manager who has proven he can give ballclubs a shot in the arm. I feel bad for Trembley because he was dealt a developmental hand, but it's time to win. The time is now, and the club just looks like the same old, same old.