Jim Johnson blew his MLB leading 8th save of the season after allowing a Paul Goldschmidt solo homer in the bottom of the ninth with the Baltimore Orioles leading 3-2. Two innings later, Goldschmidt delivered again, this time for the walkoff win as the Arizona Diamondbacks took down the Birds 4-3 in 11 innings.
If you were one of those awake with us as the Cue the Pretender tweet came out, then odds are you were just as nervous as we were as well, and unfortunately those nerves came to fruition. Johnson entered the game in the ninth with a 3-2 lead and looking to become the league's first closer to reach 40 saves this season, but instead he came the first closer to reach eight blown saves this season as the very first batter he faced in Goldschmidt resulted in the blown save.
Despite Johnson nearly allowing the winning run to score in the ninth, Baltimore's offense could not capitalize in the extra frames as they only sent seven batters to the plate combined in the 10th and 11th innings. T.J. McFarland tossed a scoreless 10th inning before coming back out for the 11th, but unfortunately for McFarland, Goldschmidt was once again the leadoff batter, and once again delivered a solo homer, this time for the walkoff win.
All of this commotion overshadowed a pretty darn good outing by starting pitcher Miguel Gonzalez (3-2). Gonzo got past the ever dangerous sixth inning without allowing a single run in the game, but the seventh proved to be the rough inning this time around. Gonzalez allowed a one out triple, that scored on a groundball one batter later to cut the Orioles lead to 3-1, but a solo homer by Gerardo Parra pulled the Diamondbacks within one at 3-2. Miguel got out of the inning with no further damage and left the game in line for his ninth win of the season after tossing seven innings, while allowing two runs on five hits, zero walks and three strikeouts.
Francisco Rodriguez had an impressive inning in the eighth by striking out two without allowing a baserunner.
Baltimore's offense was held in check for the most part as they only mustered six hits in the game, but as we have become accustom to, the Birds three runs all came courtesy of the long ball. Chris Davis delivered his MLB leading 44th home run, a two run shot in the 4th and was followed an inning later by JJ Hardy's 22nd homer of the season.
Brian Roberts joined Hardy as the only Orioles hitters with a multi hit game, and perhaps the most impressive stat for the Baltimore offense last night was the fact that they only struck out twice the entire game, especially since one of them was the pitcher Gonzalez.
The Birds will look to salvage a game in this series this afternoon as they send their ace to the mound, Chris Tillman (14-3), but will go up against Arizona ace Patrick Corbin (12-3). With a win, the O's will complete their eight game west coast road trip 5-3, which would be acceptable, but with a loss and a 4-4 record on the road trip could perhaps put them out of reach of the division.
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