Orioles Rally for Win on Last Day of Season - Davis Bobblehead Day

It was the last game of the 2013 season.  The Red Sox had clinched home field advantage for the playoffs while the O’s were sitting this playoff season out.  There was not a lot to play for, with many of the stars sitting the bench.  It was also Chris Davis bobblehead day, with the gates opening at 11:30, two hours before game time to accommodate the large crowd.  Chris Davis only lasted into the fourth inning, getting one at bat before spraining his wrist and forced to leave the game.  His replacement, Ryan Flaherty would drive in two runs with a double and a single to lead the Orioles to a 7-6 win over the Red Sox.

The game did not start well for the Orioles.  Chris Tillman was hit hard in the first two innings.  Jacoby Ellsbury led the game off by rocketing a 2-1 89 mile per hour fastball into the right field bleachers.  Mike Napoli would scorch another pedestrian fastball to one hop the center field fence to advance David Ortiz to third.  He would score when Mike Carp bounced one up the middle that Tillman could not field.  J.J. Hardy got the out but Ortiz scored the second run.

In the second inning Quintin Berry upped his batting average to .800 with a 2-run homer over the scoreboard and onto the porch in right field.  That gave the Red Sox a 4-0 lead.  They added a single run in the fourth after a bad throw by catcher Steve Clevenger went inside the first base bag, forcing Chris Davis to reach for it.  Ellsbury ran into the glove hand of Davis, flinging the glove down the right field line.  The errant throw allowed a run to score and forced Davis to leave the game after only one at bat, a walk.

With a 5-0 deficit and both Chris Davis and Adam Jones now out of the lineup things did not look good.  Allan Webster had walked the bases loaded in the first inning but left the game after three innings with a no hitter.  Felix Doubront kept the no hitter alive after the fourth inning.

In the fifth Steve Clevenger ended the no-no with a leadoff single.  Jonathan Schoop followed with a single.  After a strikeout to Brian Roberts, Nick Markakis drew a walk to load the bases.  J.J. Hardy drove the first pitch from Doubront into the right centerfield gap where the ball bounced over the fence to score two runs.

Ryan Flaherty got the first of his two hits, a bloop single over shortstop Xander Boegart’s glove to drive in the third run.  Another walk loaded the bases.  The manager left Doubront in to face the lefty Nate McLouth but he lined a double down the right field line to score two runs to tie the game.  The Red Sox brought in Rubby de la Rosa to retire the next two batters on groundouts, stranding the go ahead run at third.

The Orioles scored two runs in the sixth, Jonathan Schoop starting the rally with a single.  Brian Roberts doubled to advance Schoop to third.  The first pitch to Nick Markakis skipped past the catcher to allow Schoop to score the go ahead run.  After two weak ground outs held Roberts at third, Ryan Flaherty came through big with a line drive double into the right field corner.  That insurance run proved crucial as the game progressed.

Jim Johnson came on to pitch the ninth.  After striking out the leadoff hitter Xander Boegarts, he gave up three straight hits to David Ortiz, Mike Napoli and Mike Carp to score one run and put runners on first and third with one out.  Will Middlebrooks hit a grounder to Danny Valencia who turned two to give the Orioles a 7-6 win.

Game Notes: Jim Johnson became only the second major league pitcher to achieve back to back 50 save seasons.  The other was Eric Gagne, who is now the coach of the French national team…It was Chris Davis bobblehead day.  The Orioles opened the gates at 11:30 and made six lines that stretched out to the streets.  If it were the normal number of lines the people would have stretched out to Ravens stadium…Chris Davis was honored before the game for hitting more homeruns than any previous Oriole for a season.  He ended the season first in homeruns with 53 and first in RBIs with 138…A woman wore an orange shirt that stated “I have a crush on Davis.”…Xander Boegarts struck out three times, walked and popped to first as he started at shortstop.  There were no balls hit to him that proved to be a challenge…Koji Uehara gets a lot of swings and misses mixing in his 82 mile per hour split fastball that drops down and his 89 mile per hour fastball that stays up.  His season numbers are amazing, with a 1.09 ERA, giving up only 33 hits in 74 innings with 101 strikeouts.  He has only walked nine to put his WHIP at 0.57…T.J. McFarland loaded the bases in the sixth on a bunt single and two walks.  He got David Ortiz to ground to first to end the inning…Myworld’s next baseball games will have to wait until November when Myworld plans on being in Arizona to catch a few days of the Arizona Fall League.     

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