Tuesday night’s Indians-Orioles game was equal parts exhilarating and frustrating. It’s exhilarating to watch Edwin Encarnacion send a baseball 454 feet into upper deck at Camden Yards. And while it’s exhilarating to watch Josh Tomlin be stingy with the walks as he throws strike after strike, it’s frustrating to watch him give up the long ball. And it’s frustrating to watch a great player like Francisco Lindor make one small mistake early in the game only to have it come back to bite the team on the rear.
Lindor singled to start the game. With a walk from Jose Ramirez, who was apparently born on base and naturally returns there like the swallows to Capistrano, the Indians had runners on 1st and 2nd with just one out and Edwin Encarnacion coming up to bat. It seemed like a great way to start a game. Lindor took a big lead off second–too big. Baltimore catcher Welington Castillo threw him out. The timing stank, because Encarnacion sent the next pitch into the left field to give the Indians a 2-0 lead.
The Orioles answered back with solo home runs by Manny Machado and Jonathan Schoop in the 1st and 2nd innings, respectively. Tomlin managed to settle down for the 3rd and 4th innings, getting giving up a couple of harmless singles while inducing some ground outs and fly outs. Then came the 5th (why is the 5th inning the problematic inning?). Tomlin gave up a pair of singles then served up a big old fastball that Manny Machado, who sent it over the fence in left center for his second home run of the night, because clearly having perfect cheek bones just isn’t enough. He needs two home runs.
Despite having a number of opportunities, the Indians couldn’t break the 5-5 tie. The Orioles finally pulled ahead in the 7th on a pair of doubles from (who else?) Manny Machado and Adam Jones. That was it. Despite getting 11 hits and a whopping seven walks, the Indians were 3-12 with runners in scoring position. Final score, Baltimore- 6, Cleveland-5. If only Lindor hadn’t gotten picked off 2nd base.