Orioles @ Indians Game 2
Greetings from Progressive Field, where the O’s will take on the Tribe for Game 2. The big news last night in the O’s 11-inning, 2-1 loss was the eighth inning play involving Adam Jones and manager Buck Showalter was more than happy to discuss it again this afternoon. You can read the specific details of that here, and Showalter reiterated that he felt Jones should have reached first base on a hit-by-pitch.
Asked if he felt like there would be any carryover between Jones –who was about as mad as I’ve ever seen him last night– and umpire Ron Kulpa, who signaled that Jones offered at the pitch in question, Showalter said he hoped not.
“I would hope there’s enough challenges with the game itself, not only us as a team and manager and players, but as much of a challenge umpiring,” Showalter said.
As for Jones fingers, they seem OK. The center fielder, like most of his teammates, is pretty beat up this time of year and he wouldn’t let anything keep him out of the lineup.
“One day I’m going to document all the stuff he’s got going on,” Showalter said.
Made sure [coach Wayne] Kirby helped him walk out to center field last night [to avoid a confrontation with Kulpa]. Best managerial move I made.”
*The Orioles starters for the first two games of the White Sox series are Bud Norris and Chris Tillman with Wednesday TBD and potentially Miguel Gonzalez. Gonzalez has been in the Minors and was recently moved to Double-A Bowie. If the O’s do have Gonzalez make that start it would give Wei-Yin Chen extra rest, which he typically pitches much better with.
“We’ve got a different situation on Tuesday [the first day Gonzalez is eligible]. We’ve got three options,” Showalter said. “We can bring back Miguel and pitch him out of the bullpen,bring him back starting or leave him there. Those are the three things we have to decide.”
*Showalter moved Chris Davis back down to the fifth spot last night after Davis –who had hit second in the previous two games– went 0-for-5 with four strikeouts (three looking) last night. Davis enters tonight with a .193 batting average which ties his lowest (minimum three games) this season.
“You can’t look at your numbers too much,” Davis said. “Obviously at some point you have to sit down and be realistic and call a spade a spade. But you always get another chance. You are not going to benefit yourself or anyone else if you go back there and feel sorry for yourself. This hasn’t been the greatest year as far as I’m concerned but we’ve done a lot of positive things. We are still in first place. So I’ll go out there and continue to try to put good at-bats together and be as productive as I can.”
Davis, who has a League-leading 145 strikeouts, has looked poised to break out numerous times this season. And Showalter has kept running him out there, citing his defense and the threat of Davis regaining form at any time as primary reasons.
“Believe me, he thinks every day is the start of something special. I wouldn’t sell him short. It’s there. Sometimes it’s late. He has a couple of games where it looks like he is really going to get going and spoil us with the level he is capable of and then it kind of goes away for a little while,
Showalter said. “When you have some tough times there is something he and we try to pinpoint. He’s got a lot of people in his ear. And that could be a challenge too.
“He knows what’s at stake. He knows there’s always going to reach a point with everybody where [it’s how far do you go? But with Chris, because he defends, because he plays with great effort and he gets some walks now and then, you think about all the big hits he has had for us. So it doesn’t send a good message to throw him under the truck.”
Here are your lineups….
Nick Markakis RF
David Lough LF
Adam Jones CF
Nelson Cruz DH
Chris Davis 1B
J.J. Hardy SS
Ryan Flaherty 3B
Caleb Joseph C
Jonathan Schoop 2B
Ubaldo Jimenez RHP
Michael Bourn CF
Jose Ramirez SS
Michael Brantley LF
Carlos Santana 1B
Jason Kipnis 2B
Yan Gomes C
Lonnie Chisenhall 3B
Zach Walters DH
Chris Dickerson RF
Carlos Carrasco RHP