Orioles vs. Athletics: Baltimore’s Jake Arrieta stumbles early in 5-2 loss

Baltimore Orioles Manager Buck Showalter, bottom left, relieves starting pitcher Jake Arrieta in the sixth inning. Arrieta struggled for the second consecutive outing. (Patrick Semansky/AP)

After his first three impressive starts this season, Baltimore Orioles right-hander Jake Arrieta was most pleased with his ability to pitch into the seventh inning, something he did just once in his final seven starts last year.

In Friday’s 5-2 loss to the Oakland A’s, however, Arrieta stumbled early and couldn’t pitch deep. It was the second consecutive time he’s failed to get through the sixth inning. Not coincidentally, it also was the second straight loss for Arrieta (1-2).

It snapped a four-game winning streak and stopped the Orioles (12-8) from going six games over .500 for the first time since July 20, 2005.

Before a bundled-up, announced crowd of 18,297 on a chilly night at Camden Yards, Arrieta retired the first four batters he faced before his command fully abandoned him — he threw a first pitch ball to seven of the initial nine batters he faced.

With one out in the second, Arrieta walked Kila Ka’aihue on four pitches, in what ended up as a 32-pitch inning for the right-hander.

With one out in the second, Arrieta walked Kila Ka’aihue on four pitches, in what ended up as a 32-pitch inning for the right-hander. Before it ended, he had given up a RBI double to Kurt Suzuki and a home run to Eric Sogard, who was in the starting lineup only because Luke Hughes was scratched due to illness.  

Arrieta only allowed one more run – a solo homer in the sixth to Oriole crusher Josh Reddick, the former Boston Red Sox outfielder who has five homers and 13 RBI in 24 games against Baltimore.

But that was plenty for Oakland’s Brandon McCarthy (1-3), who picked up his first win of the year by limiting the Orioles to five hits and three walks over seven innings.

But the best hit of the night had nothing to do with a bat.

During the seventh-inning stretch, a bare-chested fan ran onto the field and eluded city police before running down the third-base line and sliding headfirst into home plate.      

As he bounced up to cheers, home plate umpire Jeff Kellogg absolutely decked the guy – bringing another ovation from the surprised crowd.     The following was announced in the press box: “Jeff Kellogg with the putout.”

— Baltimore Sun


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