Results tagged ‘ Alfonso Soriano ’

Gonzo faces the music

It’s always
interesting for the media to see if a new pitcher will “own up” when he blows
it. In the case of Mike Gonzalez, he
was ready and willing to face the music as soon as the reporters walked in. He
made zero excuses, didn’t use clichés and was noticeably upset about his
performance, which includes a loss and a blown save in the Orioles 4-3 loss to
the Rays.

Most of my game story
on Orioles.com centers on Gonzo, but here’s the rundown of what he said.

“Seriously, I’m disgusted by the whole thing,” Gonzalez
said when asked if Tuesday’s loss was tough to swallow given the performance of
the other arms.

 

“You see [Kevin]
Millwood
go out there and pitch a gem. The bullpen did awesome, they did
great, they did what they had to do, they grinded. Our offense did what they
were doing all last year. They’re going to get their runs, and I’ve got to come
in and shut the door.”

 

“I’ve got no excuses about that. I didn’t get it done
and it’s one of those things where, as soon as I leave this locker room, I’m
forgetting about it. Tomorrow’s another day and I’ve got to come in and get it
done then.”

 

Gonzalez’s radar readings were the best they’ve been this
spring, with a fastball that topped out at 93 mph. Unfortunately, his location
left much to be desired as the Rays jumped on the lefty for a one-out single
and a pair of doubles, sandwiched in between an intentional walk to Jason
Bartlett.  Carl Crawford had the winning
hit.

 

 “I felt surprisingly really good,” said Gonzalez who admitted
he was amped when he took the hill for the first time in an Orioles uniform.  

 

“I’ve just got to tone it down a little bit. That means
getting the ball down a little more. Those pitches up, they took advantage of
them. They executed the pitches and that’s how it went.”

 

And because I know
this one outing will spark questions about whether Gonzalez should be the
Orioles closer, here’s what manager Dave Trembley had to say:

 “We
got ourselves to the ninth inning and Gonzalez is our guy and we just didn’t
get the three outs.”

 Wasn’t this game
scripted exactly the way Trembley wanted?

“That’s the way it
is, that’s how it will be,” he said. “There is no one else that’s going to
close it. That’s Gonzalez. [Will] Ohman is going to come in and matchup left
against left. He did a tremendous job. Johnson is your eighth inning guy. More
times than not, it’s going to work in your favor. It didn’t tonight.”

The bottom line is
the Orioles are paying Gonzalez $12 million over the next two seasons. So he will
get every opportunity to prove he can hold down the ninth.

A totally unrelated fact: Rays pitcher Rafael
Soriano, the other half of the Braves closing team last season, got the win in
Tuesday’s game. Gonzalez obviously got the loss, but the two are closer than
just formerly sharing a clubhouse. Gonzalez said he’s a godfather to one of
Soriano’s kids.

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