Orioles show frustration in loss to Nationals; Bleier, Flores argue in dugout; Wojciechowski hit hard in first - BaltimoreBaseball.com

Rich Dubroff

Orioles show frustration in loss to Nationals; Bleier, Flores argue in dugout; Wojciechowski hit hard in first

Photo Credit: Joy R. Absalon

WASHINGTON—Asher Wojciechowski’s horrid first inning set the tone for a frustrating evening for the Orioles. Wojciechowski was battered for five runs, and the Orioles couldn’t recover and lost the finale of the 2019 Beltway Series to the Washington Nationals, 8-4, on Wednesday night.

The game also featured the team’s second dugout flare-up of the month. Reliever Richard Bleier had a heated exchange with third base coach Jose Flores, who is in charge of positioning infielders, in the dugout in the fifth. Earlier in the month, Orioles first baseman Chris Davis had to be restrained from going after manager Brandon Hyde after a dugout argument.

Bleier replaced Wojciechowski in the fifth and gave up four straight hits and three runs. “I just gave up a couple of hits there and didn’t quite make pitches when I needed to,” Bleier said. “Things just didn’t work out.”

Bleier appeared to say something that drew Flores’ ire as he reached the dugout. Teammates stepped between the two.

“I think I just let frustration kind of [boil] over, some stuff that … some balls that I thought maybe … defensive positioning, I guess, and I … probably could have done better for myself to keep my mouth shut and, unfortunately, I may have said something, and you guys saw the rest.”

Bleier regretted the outburst.

“Yeah, for sure,” Bleier said. “Yeah, I mean I think that we’re all adults. It’s not like I’m  mad at anybody. Right now, we’re not thrilled with each other, maybe, but I’m sure we can move past this and get back to a healthy relationship.”

The night got off to a bad start for the Orioles.

Wojciechowski began the first by striking out Trea Turner. He then hit Adam Eaton with a pitch. Eaton pulled up as he took third on Anthony Rendon’s double and was removed for pinch-runner Gerardo Parra.

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Juan Soto’s triple, which was misplayed by centerfielder Anthony Santander, scored Parra and Rendon. Asdrubal Cabrera’s single brought in Soto.

Kurt Suzuki’s two-run home run put Washington ahead, 5-0.

“It’s that first inning,” Wojciechowski said. “I had good warmups in the bullpen and then came out there and just a little out of whack. Getting too (much) rotation on my fastball, yanking some pitches and then trying to correct and just really missing middle-middle with a lot of pitches.

“It is a frustrating first inning, but I was able to settle down after that and make some pitches the second, third and fourth inning. But still, that first inning, giving up five like that, really puts us in a hole.”

Max Scherzer struck out five of the first nine Orioles, and allowed a two-out single to Jonathan Villar in the third. Villar stole second, his 29th, and scored on Santander’s double.

Chance Sisco homered to lead off the fifth, his seventh and first since July 7. With one out, Villar and Santander reached on infield singles, and Scherzer was removed after 89 pitches.

Trey Mancini represented the tying run but hit into a double play started by Rendon, and the Orioles trailed, 5-2.

“We just had two bad innings,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “A 5-spot and a 3-spot. We battled back again and gave ourselves a chance. They played really good defense. That play that Rendon made in a big spot, that kind of changes the game right there. They made the plays defensively, and we just gave up too many runs.”

Scherzer was making his second start since returning from the 10-day injured list with a back strain.

“Anytime you have a great pitcher like him on the other side, it’s definitely not what you want to do is put your team in a 5-0 hole in the first inning,” Wojciechowski said. “But we battled back and fought and clawed, but I’ve got to be better than that in the first inning. I’ve got to go deeper in games and just execute pitches from pitch No. 1 and continue to execute pitches throughout the game.”

Wojciechowski, who hasn’t won in six starts, was removed after four.

Chris Davis hit his 10th home run in the sixth, a two-run shot off Tanner Rainey. He became the ninth Oriole to hit 10 or more this season, and cut Washington’s lead to to 8-4.

The Orioles had first and third in the seventh, but DJ Stewart’s strikeout ended the inning.

Fernando Rodney and Daniel Hudson retired the last six Orioles, whose record is 44-89.

The Orioles’ three-game winning streak ended, one shy of their season-high, and they managed to split the four games against the Nationals in 2019.

Trumbo heating up: Mark Trumbo hit his second home run in as many nights as Norfolk lost to Gwinnett, 14-8. Trumbo is hoping to play when the rosters expand on Sunday.

Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB

25 Comments

25 Comments

  1. CalsPals

    August 29, 2019 at 7:27 am

    Said this when they choose to do NOTHING when CD showed he was a cancerous in the dugout, no one in the organization chose to take action, now you have another “vet” blowing up, I’m sure they’ll do nothing AGAIN, some people here will agree with them, 38 yrs of coaching & NEVER had an issue remotely disrespectful like this, Blier, not a lifer vet, more time in the minors, today’s athletes run the teams & make decisions…wow,,,go O’s…embarrassing…

    • Hallbe62

      August 29, 2019 at 11:21 am

      Totally embarrassing. Habitual losing on this club has become like a cancer unto itself, slowly growing and festering. A concept no doubt lost on the Orioles new brass.

    • Orial

      August 29, 2019 at 12:21 pm

      I totally disagree. I see no signs of Davis being a cancer. Taking up space yes. He lost his cool through frustration that’s all.

    • CalsPals

      August 29, 2019 at 12:50 pm

      & when the O’s did NOTHING, Blier does essentially the same thing…cancer…go O’s…

  2. Birdman

    August 29, 2019 at 7:39 am

    Why should the Orioles give playing time to Mark Trumbo in September? I guess he’s a nice guy, but they certainly don’t “owe” Trumbo anything – he’s already been compensated very generously ($37 million) for three unproductive seasons, and he is not part of the team’s future plans. Better to give September playing time to Mountcastle than to use it on Trumbo’s audition for his next team.

    • CalsPals

      August 29, 2019 at 7:48 am

      Said that the other day, others disagreed, I TOTALLY agree with you, he’ll just be taking away at bats from younger guys…let him referee between the coaches & players…lmao… go O’s…

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 29, 2019 at 7:59 am

      Joel and Raymond, the Orioles will give some playing time to Mark Trumbo to reward him for his perserverance in rehabbing from his knee surgery. It’s a ‘thank you’ to sticking through when he easily could have gone home, said the knee wasn’t up to playing and collected his money. It’s to show younger players that that’s the right way to do things, and on a team with this kind of record, it’s important.

      Bringing up Ryan Mountcastle is a seperate decision. Trumbo’s availability doesn’t impact whether they’ll bring him up or not, and Trumbo is rehabbing so he can play the field. I wouldn’t think Trumbo would get regular work, but enough to show another team he could be worth taking a flyer on next season.

      • CalsPals

        August 29, 2019 at 8:36 am

        They want to send a message of how to do things the right way sometimes, how about the handling of CD & Bliers infantile actions in the dugout, probably a more important message with these young guys. My reply was entirely related to Trumbo…go O’s..

      • Borg

        August 29, 2019 at 9:07 am

        Trumbo would have to have a massively productive September to convince anyone there is still anything left in the tank, and in order to do that he would have to be in the lineup on a regular basis, which would take ABs away from somebody, whether that is Mountcastle or some other player. I think the Os have given him million$ of thank yous already and it isn’t like Trumbo was a lifelong Oriole who is at the end of a decade in orange and black. He had one good year and banked million$ as a result. Time to move on from that and look at people who might actually play a role next year and onward. The message to younger players is that if they can manage to snag a large contract the club will play them no matter how they produce. Davis and Trumbo are exhibit A and B for that.

    • ClayDal

      August 29, 2019 at 11:57 am

      In terms of Trumbo’s future employment, teams aren’t necessarily concerned about his production. More interested in the condition of his knees and how he responds to actively playing. I’m lousy at free agent predictions, but I would guess Trumbo, if he wants, gets a minor league contract with a Spring Training invite by an AL team. Low guarantee salary, lots of incentive money. Given Trumbo’s track record, some team will give him a chance

  3. Fareastern89

    August 29, 2019 at 8:20 am

    Those who want to bring up Mountcastle might remember what happened when the O’s brought up Hays in September several years ago. Hays struggled, went home in the offseason and apparently decided to change his approach at the plate and still has not quite recovered. Why not just let Mountcastle end his season on an upswing and bask in the honor of being the MVP of the International League? And apparently the sort of brief argument between Bleier and Flores goes on all the time, albeit usually out of camera range. Sounds like everyone will quickly put it behind them and move on.

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 29, 2019 at 8:33 am

      The difference between Hays and Mountcastle is that Hays was brought up barely a year after he was drafted, and had just a brief time at Double-A.

      Mountcastle was drafted four years ago and has extensive experience at each level.

      • Phil770

        August 29, 2019 at 8:42 am

        And in 4 years, still does not have a position in the field that he can play. I don’t think he should be brought up. Send Hays to Arizona and bring up Williams to see if he is a keeper.

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 29, 2019 at 9:39 am

      I would be shocked if Mason Williams was added to the roster, Phil,

    • Le Merlu

      August 29, 2019 at 12:26 pm

      Well, a guy gets an MVP in the AAA and that’s some mighty bang on the door. of a very weak major team. Why not let him start seeing some MLB pitches now. It’s not that he’s so precious the Club needs to heed the service clock.

  4. Orial

    August 29, 2019 at 10:17 am

    I have no problem with giving Trumbp a few at bats in Sept. Solid,dedicated veteran. Holding “the pie” incident against him is childish. If he’s stealing ABs from Mountcastle so be it–September’s not gonna make or break him(spring training is “ground zero” for Mountcastle)NOW—a more pressing need–get a damn CFer. Mullins,Hays,Williams in 2020 but please get a CFer.
    ,

  5. willmiranda

    August 29, 2019 at 10:29 am

    I am sympathetic to having deserving young players brought up and given playing time in September. I am, however, not in agreement with what have to be considered personal attacks on Trumbo. He’s done nothing to justify accusations of malingering. And, strictly on the basis of performance, putting him in the same category as Chris Davis has no basis in fact. There are decent arguments for a number of different scenarios in September, and the team will have to make decisions based on them. I prefer to see the young guys, but it’s mostly emotional, the hope and excitement of something new and different.

    • Birdman

      August 29, 2019 at 10:47 am

      I certainly didn’t accuse Trumbo of “malingering.” But the plain fact is that, for whatever reasons, he has been a $37 million flop for the past three seasons. Not a flop on the scale of Chris Davis (who else in MLB is?), but a flop nonetheless. My point is simply that the Orioles don’t “owe” Trumbo playing time in September so he can audition for his next team. They should do what is best for the development of the team in 2020.

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        August 29, 2019 at 11:28 am

        Trumbo hit 40 home runs, drove in over 100 runs, and basically was a major league hitter during an injury shortened 2017-2018 span. That represents basically 1½ years of his 3 year contract. He hasn’t been healthy for that 2nd half … granted.

        But when he was healthy, he certainly fulfilled his contractual expectations in my opinion. If average Joe were unable to perform his average Joe job duties due to health issues… would average Joe be referred to as a flop?

        To call him a flop is not fair.

    • Camden Brooks

      August 29, 2019 at 10:25 pm

      Boog is spot on here.

  6. cb

    August 29, 2019 at 11:18 am

    The rosters expand in a couple of days, so I guess it wouldn’t hurt to activate him. I would give him very few at bats though. If he doesn’t like it, he can ask for his release.

  7. Bhoffman1

    August 29, 2019 at 12:03 pm

    Why is Jace Peterson getting so much playing time my friends on Camden Chat wrote? Yet Mason Williams gets no chance to show what he can do even though he is having a great season at Norfolk. Hope next season he catches on with a MLB team.

    • CalsPals

      August 29, 2019 at 12:54 pm

      He will, probably an AL East team, & he’ll come back in spades, against the O’s…

    • Bhoffman1

      August 29, 2019 at 2:37 pm

      Yes that’s a good possibility. I don’t know Elias thinking he signed the guy and the guy produced big time for him yet he played two infielders in the outfield who are utility guys and put a right fielder in center when this guy is a true outfielder

    • ClayDal

      August 29, 2019 at 7:44 pm

      As regards to Mason Williams, it’s possible the Orioles might be looking to trade him to a contender before August 31. While the deadline to trade MLB players was July 31, players who are not on the 40 man roster can be. Not that the Orioles would get much in a trade ( player to be named later, very low level prospect) but Williams might be able to help a contender in September. That could explain why the Orioles haven’t brought him up yet. Or maybe they just don’t like him

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