Orioles lose 4th straight, 23rd out of last 25; Guerrero hits 2 homers for Blue Jays; Ellis is solid - BaltimoreBaseball.com

Rich Dubroff

Orioles lose 4th straight, 23rd out of last 25; Guerrero hits 2 homers for Blue Jays; Ellis is solid

Photo credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA Today Sports

The Orioles turned to Chris Ellis in an attempt to break their three-game losing streak. Ellis was the starter on August 25th when the Orioles battled back from a 6-2 deficit to end their 19-game losing streak.

In his first major league start, Ellis gave up three runs in 3 1/3 innings. In his second, he threw 4 2/3 and left with the score tied, 1-1.

The Orioles took the lead in the top of the sixth, but Dillon Tate gave up three runs in the bottom of the third in a 7-3 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Centre.

It was the fourth straight loss for the Orioles (40-90) and their 23rd in their last 25 games.

Toronto (69-61) has faint playoff hopes and is in fourth place in the American League East. But there’s a big gap between the fourth-place  Blue Jays and the fifth-place Orioles. The Blue Jays have won seven of 10 against the Orioles, and the teams still have nine games left, including the final three of the season in Toronto.

Ryan Mountcastle’s 25th home run against Robbie Ray (10-5) put the Orioles ahead, 1-0. in the second.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. hit his 37th home run in the fourth.

“He’s a really good hitter,” Ellis said. “He’s having an MVP-type season. He’s smashing baseballs. I think I tried to throw him a fastball away and leaked it over the inner part of the plate, and he turned on it. That’s what good hitters do. They hit mistake pitches.”

Ellis threw 69 pitches in 4 2/3. He allowed the run on two hits. The Orioles claimed Ellis on waivers on August 20th, three days after he pitched four scoreless, one-hit innings against them for Tampa Bay

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“It’s been a weird year for me,” Ellis said. “I’m just trying to go out thee and make quality pitches for as long as they’ll let me. They haven’t really given me a game plan of, ‘hey, you’re going to have this many pitches today.’

“I’m trying to go out there and let it rip in the zone, and whenever they decide to pull me, it is what it is.”

At 28, Ellis appreciates the opportunity with the Orioles.

“It’s been a weird minor league career,” he said. “I’ve bounced around a lot. I’ve had some good years. I’ve had some bad years. Tampa Bay called me and set things in motion. Now that I’m here, I’m extremely grateful that [manager Brandon] Hyde has given me the  opportunity to take the ball every fifth day so far.

“If it stays that way, then great. If not, then I’ll go back to the bullpen — great, too.”

Hyde was pleased with Ellis.

“He did everything we could have asked him to do tonight,” Hyde said.

An infield hit by Mountcastle in the sixth gave the Orioles a 2-1 lead.

George Springer led off the sixth with a single against Tate (0-4). Marcus Semien walked. Both runners moved up on an infield out by Guerrero. Bo Bichette singled to score Springer, and Teoscar Hernández doubled to drive in Semien and Bichette for a 4-2 Blue Jays lead.

“Like a lot of our relievers, inconsistent,” Hyde said about Tate. “Stuff’s there, execution’s not all the time. Just a poor pitch selection to Hernández on the bad slider after getting him 0-2. You need a ground ball there. He’s a ground-ball guy.

“It’s consistent command. Some nights good, some nights not.”

Guerrero’s three-run home run, his 38th against Marcos Diplán put the Orioles behind, 7-2.

Ray allowed two runs on four hits in seven innings, walking one and striking out 10. It was his third consecutive start with at least 10 strikeouts. He has 202 this season, the fourth time he has exceeded 200.

“He’s having a heck of a year,” Hyde said. “He’s a Cy Young candidate.”

Pedro Severino’s RBI single in the ninth forced Toronto manager Charlie Montoyo to use closer Jordan Romano, who retired Ramón Urías and pinch-hitter Cedric Mullins for his 14th save.

Notes: Mountcastle trails only Cal Ripken Jr., who hit 28 in 1982 and Eddie Murray (27 in 1977) for most home runs by an Oriole rookie. …Keegan Akin (1-8, 7.26 ERA) will face Hyun Jin Ryu (12-7, 3.88) on Tuesday night. … The Orioles have allowed 201 home runs this season.

Call for Questions: I’ll be answering your Orioles questions later this week. Please leave your questions in the comments below or email them to: [email protected].

Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB

42 Comments

42 Comments

  1. Orioleschatter

    August 31, 2021 at 8:06 am

    23 out of 25. Futility exemplified

  2. Orial

    August 31, 2021 at 8:17 am

    Hey Mr. Elias– Roy is gonna be a Free Agent! Little humor to start things off. I’ve been really trying to like Tate all along but he really needs a little “Tampa Bay” tweaking. I know Hyde is saving his ,supposedly,best pitcher Tyler Wells for 9th inning save opportunities but it might be time to re-think that. How about a 7th inning shutdown appearance. Talk about wasting away. If Mountcastle can ever reach that Vlad “beast” level we’ll really have something. Speaking of Vlad–Mr. Htde/Mr. Holt please learn to pitch around certain players–they’re eating you alive. Jones sitting already. Patience level is very quick these days(ask Richie Martin). Final thought–I realize Ellis was a throw-in starter but damn he was in control. Put down your sabermetric playbook and let him keep going(game unraveled as soon as he came out). Shouldn’t Hyde anticipate these eventual happenings?

    • CalsPals

      August 31, 2021 at 8:35 am

      Another case of pulling a pitcher too early, I kind of get the explanation of saving injuries, it’s their friggin job, they aren’t going to be able to longer if their bodies aren’t conditioned to go longer, WTH…defies common sense…go O’s…

    • willmiranda

      August 31, 2021 at 9:56 am

      The culture and expectation of losing is so ingrained that the admittedly infrequent opportunities for winning are not recognized, or perhaps even feared. Speaking of Richie Martin, his arrival coincided with the start of The Plan. Three years into the process, has The Plan advanced Richie a single step in his performance or career? I am placing the burden here not on the player but on the team, which selected him in Rule 5 because they felt they had the ability to develop him into a starting major league shortstop.

      • Phil770

        August 31, 2021 at 10:17 am

        Yeah, that’s right, injuries and a cancelled minor league season, all Elias’ fault.

      • OriolesREALNumber1Fan

        August 31, 2021 at 1:53 pm

        Richie was a great signing and he still has a super chance to be the Orioles shortstop for the next 10 years. He’s probably the best rule 5 pick the O’s have ever signed. Certainly better than Santander who is super injury prone himself!

        Go Orioles and God Bless Mike Elias.

    • CalsPals

      August 31, 2021 at 10:31 am

      EVERYONE had a cancelled minor league season last, some still attempted to win this year, some chose not to…:)…guess which the O’s were?…go O’s…

      • Rich Dubroff

        August 31, 2021 at 12:28 pm

        Yes, everyone had a cancelled minor league season last year, but the Orioles were hurt more by it because they are more dependent on young players than most any other players. As I’ve been writing, they’ve tried to win, but the younger players they’ve given opportunities to haven’t played well.

        Adley Rutschman will be an excellent player, and he could play in the majors now, but really, how many more games would they have won with him in the lineup? Even Ohtani, as great as he is, has a 7.9 WAR. Buster Posey has a 2.9 WAR. Who else did they not promote that they should have?

        • WorldlyView

          August 31, 2021 at 5:15 pm

          Rich, This is at least the second time that you have placed blame for the O’s’ past, present, and presumably near-future poor performance on unnamed players who haven’t “played well” when given their opportunities. I beg to differ. I do not believe there is any statistically valid means of measuring the difference between how an inexperienced major leaguer could or should perform vs.actual performance, sabermetrics notwithstanding. (Apologies to those who believe WAR proves something.) The psychological element in this complex game can’t be quantified, but must be factored into the big picture. Furthermore, whatever alleged “shortcomings” there have been in these players performances may be the result of management and other observers badly overestimating their abilities. Or perhaps not coaching them well, or not putting them in the best position to win. One rule of thumb that I think is valid is that the performance of any organized group starts at the top. Oriole ownership and management have decided–rightly or wrongly–there is no need to put a competitive team on the field while the great rebuild slowly chugs toward what we can only hope will be a successful conclusion sometime in the future. Time will tell if the money saved exceeds fans’ disillusionment and reluctance to buy tickets.

    • CalsPals

      August 31, 2021 at 12:55 pm

      It’s the perception of trying to win, it doesn’t appear they made sincere effort, like other teams, wonder what the percentage was/is of transactions for the O’s that were rule 5 acquisitions, to me that is not truly showing an effort, throwing stuff against the wall & hoping something sticks, you have your opinion, we’ll just agree to disagree, I see nothing sincere in any move they made prior to some of the releases lately…go O’s…

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        August 31, 2021 at 8:09 pm

        Screw the perception of trying to win. It’s the perception that they’re tyring to lose. Furthermore, I think it’s been taken past mere perception.

    • CalsPals

      September 1, 2021 at 7:37 am

      Agree, it’s not the perception of trying to lose, that’s not a perception, that’s reality…lol…go O’s…

  3. Orioles20

    August 31, 2021 at 8:26 am

    Hyde needs to learn how to manage a bullpen. Tate doesn’t seem comfortable going multiple innings. And as manager Hyde should know this and try to put his players in situations there comfortable in. We already have ninety losses with 32 games left. Might actually challenge the expansion Mets for the most losses. Pathetic because Hyde has cost this team so many games with his mismanagement.

  4. NormOs

    August 31, 2021 at 8:32 am

    Ellis gave up one run in 5 innings so instead letting him pitch inning #6 and maybe more, Hyde chooses to go with his non-existant bullpen and had that decision shoved squarely where the sun don’t shine. Oh well, I guess you don’t need a major league manager for this team anyway. Maybe next year.

  5. OriolesREALNumber1Fan

    August 31, 2021 at 8:34 am

    Just wait until next year. In Mike Elias I trust!

    Go Orioles! We’re Number 1!

    • dlgruber1

      August 31, 2021 at 1:52 pm

      No, “we’re” draft position #1. There’s a bit of a difference.

    • WorldlyView

      August 31, 2021 at 5:45 pm

      Come next year, we will be better than Number 1, RealFan.

  6. CalsPals

    August 31, 2021 at 10:17 am

    “Putting up seven against the Orioles isn’t exactly taking down Goliath, as Baltimore isn’t far removed from a 19-game losing streak”, from MLB.com, only time we’re mentioned is as not being a competent MLB team….how sad things have become…go O’s…

  7. Bman

    August 31, 2021 at 10:44 am

    Any idea when Kjerstad may resume baseball activities? Any thoughts on the Os delving into the free agency market this winter?

  8. Boog Robinson Robinson

    August 31, 2021 at 11:37 am

    Vladimir Guerrero Jr. … quite impressive ‘eh boys?

    Can you imagine just how much better he’d be if he were held back that extra year or year&½ to get that extra 1000 at bats in the minor leagues while being fed some modern analytics? You might really have something then.

    Blue Jays really ruined this guy’s progress IMO.

    • CalsPals

      August 31, 2021 at 12:16 pm

      Lol, exactly, what were they thinking…go O’s…

    • Rich Dubroff

      August 31, 2021 at 12:37 pm

      Ken, Guerrero signed at 16. He had three full seasons in the minors. The Orioles have no comparable players because they didn’t sign blue chip international free agents for years.

      Rutschman will have one full season in the minors plus 37 games in 2019. Had the season not been cancelled last year, he would be playing in the major leagues now.

      Yes, he’s good enough to play now, but he wouldn’t have made much difference in their record. By holding him back for this entire year, they save service time–and none of us know what the new CBA will bring in terms of those rules, and they can save a spot on the 40. They can keep him playing next spring in case there’s a work stoppage, and debuting him next spring is wiser at the box office. Bringing him up now at the end of a horrible season accomplishes little from a promotional standpoint, and yes, if they have a whole winter to trumpet his arrival, they’ll sell more tickets that way.

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        August 31, 2021 at 12:52 pm

        I didn’t have Rutschman in mind here Rich. I was thinking more of Mountcastle… also signed as a teenager …and with quite a bit more minor league experience to the tune of 1000+ more at bats the Guerrero.

        One thing I’ll wager right now is that come time to pony up the big $$ for Guerrero … the Jays won’t hesitate. Heck he’ll get a lot of cheese simply going to arbitration, well before he’s up for FAgency.

        And unless the O’s are under to ownership when Mountcastle is due … he’s a goner. And I hate that. There’s a price to doing business in the league. Somebody needs to figure that out.

        One more wager I’d go for right now …. if Elias’ master plan works, he’s going to bolt for the bright lights of a larger market as well. I wonder then what all the Elias-ites will think of him? Of course … that’s just speculation … and I’m all for his master plan working as much as the next guy. I just don’t like his methods for what I consider ethical reasons.

        One last thing …. this is much more on ownership than Mike Elias. I know that, but Mike is the front man by his own choosing.

    • CalsPals

      August 31, 2021 at 12:58 pm

      If he’s good enough to play now he should, bottom line, play your best players…go O’s…

  9. Buzz1979

    August 31, 2021 at 12:01 pm

    He won’t be impressive long if he doesn’t get more plate discipline, pushing himself away from the dinner table!

    • CalsPals

      August 31, 2021 at 12:27 pm

      Articles state he lost 42 lbs since last year, not sure about today, but I’d take him…go O’s…

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        August 31, 2021 at 12:57 pm

        Big Ben said the same thing last night. Vladdy does look thinner to me this year than last. But again … Babe Ruth anyone?

    • CalsPals

      August 31, 2021 at 2:35 pm

      Here we go body shaming again, lol…go O’s…

  10. RoenStein

    August 31, 2021 at 3:05 pm

    I’ll argue that Mike Elias has had almost three years to put his stamp on the team, which includes the results at the major league level. His combined record there is 119-234: a winning percentage of .337.

    “But, but, but Duquette was terrible, he had to go!” cry the Elias fanboys. No doubt that under Duquette and Showalter the Orioles had a bad 2017 and a disastrous ’18 season. Most likely, it was time for a change in the front office (and the dugout) but let’s take a look at Duquette’s body of work with the organization. From 2012-18, the Orioles had a winning record 4 seasons, one year at .500 and of course, losing seasons the last two. They made the playoffs 3 of those years, including a trip to the ALCS. Looks pretty decent to me, especially in light of the last 3 seasons under the Elias regime.

    “But, but, but Duquette has no idea about drafting talent, making smart trades or free agent acquisitions!” cry the Elias fanboys some more. Really? When in Montreal, Duquette was responsible for drafting the likes of Rondell White, Marquis Grissom, Cliff Floyd, Javier Vasquez and others. He signed Vladimir Guerrero, John Wetteland and Larry Walker and traded for Pedro Martinez. In Boston, he was behind drafting/signing/trading for the likes of Manny Raminerez, Nomar Garciapara, Tim Wakefield, Johnny Damon, Jason Varitek and reacquiring Pedro Martinez. Dan Duquette built a winning culture everywhere he went. To say he was some sort of buffoon who got lucky once in a while spending Peter Angelos’ money would indicate one does not know how to properly evaluate a MLB front office. Perhaps this has been discussed and I missed it, but how do we know for certain that Duquette didn’t pitch the idea of a minor rebuild to Peter Angelos prior to 2017/18 and he (Angelos) went against it?

    Look at the few players who are performing acceptably at the major league level for the Orioles. Do you see any that were a result of a smart pickup or trade on the part of Elias? Where are the results of Sig’s magical analytics that they promised would help produce immediate improvement? Was Baltimore’s farm system depleted, partly as a result of Duquette (but see above) – absolutely. Has Elias done a good job of rebuilding the farm system? Apparently so – the Orioles are now ranked at the top. But – and this is key – have the Orioles tried to put a competitive or entertaining product on the field at Camden Yards while the kids develop? I think we all know that Elias has been an abject failure in that regard. As many current or former GM’s have been saying both on and off the record, what Elias has done – intentionally tanking to stock up on draft picks – is bad for the game and should be dealt with (i.e. changing the draft rules to partially punish – not reward – this intentional behavior).

    I’ll tell you what doesn’t show up on a computer model or a spreadsheet – a player’s character, desire and heart. Or a coach’s or manager’s ability to lead for that matter. And that’s where I think these analytics geeks fall flat on their faces. They don’t know how to evaluate the intangibles, the things that don’t show up in the box score but create a winning culture. In many of the interviews I’ve heard with Elias, it’s all about numbers and what the front office is doing – almost as if the players are less important than their modeling. .

    I’m sure there are many who read these comments who’ve been part of building a new business or turning around an established one. What are the first things you do to ensure success? You hire experienced people to staff the office and find frontline workers to build a solid foundation. From there, you hire some recent college graduates who you determine after you checking their references, can be molded by the employees with experience to create a successful culture.

    Although Elias keeps saying things like “we knew this would be a very painful process” I highly doubt he went into his interview with the Angelos brothers with this vibe. Had Elias said the team would suck worse than the ’18 team for 3 years and not see .500 for possibly five seasons, no way he gets the job. The Angelos brothers were oversold on the use of analytics and way oversold on how much Elias contributed to the turnaround in Houston. Just my humble opinion.

    • dlgruber1

      August 31, 2021 at 5:24 pm

      RoenStein, brilliant analysis backed by facts. One point I’d like to elaborate on is what you had to say about Duquette’s success at Montreal and Boston. It stands to reason that one would assume Duquette would follow the same pattern of his previous success to Baltimore. So one should also assume he mustn’t have had the luxury of pulling the strings in Baltimore that he had in Montreal and Boston. That would certainly explain his interest in leaving Baltimore to go to Toronto. Without being privy to any conversations Elias had with the Angelos family I sure hope he’ll be granted more leeway to run the team than it appears obvious to me now than was afforded Duquette I really want Elias to succeed, and for that to happen, Angelos will have to allow it. Once again, brilliant post.

    • NormOs

      August 31, 2021 at 5:33 pm

      Great article……Thank you very much.

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      August 31, 2021 at 8:15 pm

      Roenstein …will you marry me?

      No seriously ..will you?

      • RoenStein

        August 31, 2021 at 8:53 pm

        Even though I have a partner (figure that one out from my BB handle), sure, Bog!

        Let’s have Jim Gentile, Jim Traber and Jamie Quirk as groomsmen and we’ll have a real O’s LGBTQ affair!

        • RoenStein

          August 31, 2021 at 8:55 pm

          Sorry – meant to say “Boog!”

          • Boog Robinson Robinson

            August 31, 2021 at 9:30 pm

            They’re not saying booooo…..

            Did I step in something maybe I shouldn’t have? 🙂

          • RoenStein

            August 31, 2021 at 9:47 pm

            Not at all! We’re just trying to have a little fun in this otherwise dreary season.

            Did you figure out my BB handle?

          • Boog Robinson Robinson

            August 31, 2021 at 10:06 pm

            Roenicke and Brother Lowenstein I would assume?

  11. cedar

    August 31, 2021 at 3:20 pm

    Call for Questions:
    Lately there has been talk suggesting that the Orioles may be more active in the free agent market. Rich, is there any indication what that increased activity may look like? Related, with the CBA set to expire on December 1, do you expect teams like the Orioles will wait until there is a new deal before singing free agents?

    • CalsPals

      September 1, 2021 at 7:57 am

      I’m guessing Mikey is more apt to sign a singing free agent than a pitcher, all in fun…;)…go O’s…

    • RoenStein

      September 1, 2021 at 4:35 pm

      Correct, Boog!

      I wonder what kind of super computer Hank Peters had that found Roenicke and Lowenstein? Or perhaps it was someone in their Analytics Dept. who suggested to Hank he pick these guys up.

      Was there ever a better platoon than those guys in O’s history?

      By the way, Earl Weaver was really the first in baseball (front office or manager) to seriously use statistics. But he still knew his players, still played hunches.

      So sad to see baseball where it is today. Perhaps we’ll flush the analytics guys out of the system and it will be a fun game again.

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        September 1, 2021 at 7:22 pm

        YES….that was a top flight platoon team in left field! (remember Bumbry & Coggins for a year or 2?)

        Gary Roenicke. What I will ALWAYS remember him for his hitting a Grand Slam Home run which won some lucky fan a cool $1Million dollars. It was a promotion that ran for years on televised games which believe paid maybe a $thousand for a home run or or $1million from a grand salame during the 3rd, 6th or 9th innings only. (memory is faded…but I think that was the deal)

        Can’t remember the business that backed it (MD Lottery maybe) … but that was the end of that promotion.

        If anybody can remember the details … please refresh my memory.

    • CalsPals

      September 1, 2021 at 5:07 pm

      Exactly RoenStein, I love the pureness of the old game…hunches are awesome…go O’s…

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