Things were running smoothly for the Orioles until the eighth inning, with the team scoring four runs in the first and leading 6-1 until that fateful inning, but then the wheels fell off. After a series of relievers, particularly Pedro Strop, failed to prevent the Yankees from rallying and tying the game up, it was going to take some serious heroics to pull this game back into the Orioles’ favor.
The heroes came in the nick of time.
Adam Jones led off the inning with a homer just one pitch after almost being hit in the face. After a single by Matt Wieters, Mark Reynolds followed him with another homer. Even a pitching change couldn’t stop the barrage, with Chris Davis launching his own moonshot right afterwards.
Jim Johnson came in afterwards and finished the Yankees off, only allowing a base hit in there that was very inconsequential, and the Orioles took game one of the series 10-6.
I cannot even begin to stress how important that eighth-inning rally for the Orioles was. They showed an ability to pick each other up after failure, the energy and strength to keep fighting even late in the game against a strong opponent, and the sheer will to win that’s brought them to this point. They’ve got what it takes to win – confidence, willpower and just enough luck. This team is, simply put, incredible.
I’d love to see them take at least two more games in this series, as that would put them in first place all by themselves by one game, but it’d be even more spectacular if they swept, as tough as that would be to pull off. For tonight, let’s just revel in the fact that we’re once again in first place and have a little party.
I’ll be destressing by watching Novak Djokovic now, thank you very much.