Till­man flat; O’s trail for wild card

Baltimore Sun - - ORIOLES - By Peter Schmuck peter.schmuck@balt­sun.com twit­ter.com/Sch­muck­S­top

The Ori­oles ar­rived at the ball­park Thurs­day need­ing start­ing pitcher Chris Till­man to be the same guy who has thrown his body in front of just about ev­ery kind of Ori­ole ad­ver­sity over the course of this sea­son.

What they didn’t need at this time of cri­sis was for Till­man to show such a lack of com­mand that it was hard not to won­der whether he re­ally is com­pletely healthy.

He lasted just 12⁄ in­nings, threw 62 pitches and al­lowed three runs on five hits and three walks, which is no way to start a game against $217 mil­lion left­hander David Price, even on a night when the Bos­ton Red Sox ace wasn’t at his best.

The Red Sox sim­ply kept the heat on and com­pleted the dev­as­tat­ing four-game sweep with a 5-3 vic­tory be­fore an an­nounced 26,788 at Cam­den Yards that knocked the Ori­oles out of the sec­ond wild-card slot af­ter the Detroit Tigers earned a 4-2 win over the Min­nesota Twins in the nightcap of their dou­ble­header in Min­neapo­lis.

Till­man came back from a three-week bat­tle with bur­si­tis in his pitch­ing shoul­der to de­liver a pair of solid starts, but he strug­gled with his com­mand and al­lowed eight of the 13 bat­ters he faced to reach base. When he walked back-to-back hit­ters with two outs in the sec­ond to force home the third Red Sox run, man­ager Buck Showal­ter had seen enough.

He brought on long re­liever Vance Wor­ley, who got out of the jam and worked 31⁄ solid in­nings while the Ori­oles tried to fig­ure out Price.

They’ll prob­a­bly have to ask rookie Trey Mancini, who got them back into the game with a game-ty­ing three-run home run in the third and tried to help over­come a one-run Red Sox lead with a lead­off dou­ble in the sixth, but didn’t get far­ther than sec­ond base.

Price com­pleted seven in­nings and al­lowed those three runs on six hits and two walks. He’s 17-8 with a 3.91 ERA.

Mancini’s three-run blast sin­gle-hand­edly ended a string of five games in which the Ori­oles had scored two runs or fewer, but the Red Sox’s late-sea­son roll was not to be stopped. They have won eight straight games since Kevin Gaus­man shut them out Sept. 14 at Fen­way Park. Mancini’s power trip: Late callup Mancini made his sec­ond start of the sea­son Thurs­day and mashed his sec­ond home run — the three-run shot off Price in the third in­ning bring­ing the Ori­oles back from an early 3-0 deficit. The crowd clam­ored for Mancini to take his sec­ond cur­tain call in two starts, but he re­mained in the dugout. One cur­tain call in a los­ing streak ap­par­ently is enough. But just to show it was no fluke, Mancini dou­bled off Price in his next at-bat.

KEN­NETH K. LAM/BAL­TI­MORE SUN

Man­ager Buck Showal­ter re­lieves start­ing pitcher Chris Till­man af­ter 12⁄ in­nings. Till­man al­lowed three runs on five hits and three walks.

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