Thursday night was a masterful pitching showdown in the Rodgers Centre. Francisco Liriano and Kevin Gausman battled it out. In the end, Gausman and the Baltimore Orioles won a nailbiter 2-1 in Toronto.
“I know that they know they’re scuffling,” Gausman said. “It’s kind of that mentally, put your foot on their throat while they’re down.”
Gausman pitched six strong innings, allowing five hits, one run, walked only two and struck out three. This start had been different than the last two. He was more at ease. In his first two starts of the season, Gausman surrendered seven walks and five earned runs in 10 innings
Against the Blue Jays, he was on cruise control for the first five innings as plenty of his out were easy groundouts. Beside the mid 90’s fastball which opponents like to attack, Gausman’s other pitches were on full display.
“He had his pitch count under control until they made him work a little bit those last couple of innings,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. “There was a seven-inning outing there. But we wanted to cut him off at six. It’s first time he’d been there. Kevin — you can talk about a lot of things in the game, but Kevin was the difference.”
Liriano was really good as well, until the fifth inning.
Welington Castillo lead-off with a single into right field. Trey Mancini on the next at bat would fire one also into right field for a single. Jonathan Schoop would do the damage as he blasted a double against the outfield wall. Castillo scored easily, while Mancini, was ruled out at home. J.J. Hardy came up next and smashed a single into left-center, scoring Schoop from second.
Britton’s 53rd Consecutive Save
Zach Britton converted his 53rd consecutive save opportunity, and more importantly, the Orioles win, improves them to 6-2 on the young season.
The O’s are back in action Friday at 7:07pm. Wade Miley will square off against Aaron Sanchez.