ANAHEIM -- How to turn around the Orioles' season?There is no magic fix. But Thursday's lopsided 12-3 loss, which completed a three-game sweep by the Angels, certainly highlighted what has been wrong with Baltimore, which is 8-23 and off to one of the worst starts in franchise history.Starter Chris Tillman
ANAHEIM -- How to turn around the Orioles' season?
There is no magic fix. But Thursday's lopsided 12-3 loss, which completed a three-game sweep by the Angels, certainly highlighted what has been wrong with Baltimore, which is 8-23 and off to one of the worst starts in franchise history.
Starter Chris Tillman couldn't record an out in the second inning. The offense was held hitless by Jaime Barria until there was one out in the sixth. And the O's -- who again overworked their bullpen heading into a three-game weekend series in Oakland -- saw their road losing streak extend to nine as they fell 14 games behind the American League East-leading Red Sox.
"It is not easy," said Tillman, who allowed seven earned runs on seven hits and a walk, exiting without recording an out in the second. "We've got a really good team in there, we've just got to play better all the way around. I've got to do my part much better. I didn't give us much of a chance tonight. If I am able to throw up a couple of zeros there and we start hitting the ball around the park, it would have been a much different story. Just got to put up some zeros."
The O's were coming off a series win over the Tigers, but they still have not won a road series since taking three of four against the Yankees from April 5-8. That was also the last time they won back-to-back games.
"It's only May 3," center fielder Adam Jones said. "The reality is we need to score more runs, we need to be more aggressive. We need to just be better. You can specify any part of the game, which is calling people out, we don't do that here. We just overall need to be better."
Coming off his best start of the season, Tillman turned in his worst one. With a 9.24 ERA and a 2017 campaign that saw him pitch to a 7.84 ERA, could Tillman's days in the rotation be numbered? The three-out outing marked the second shortest by an Orioles starter this year. Mike Wright Jr., who is now in the bullpen, recorded just two outs against the Yankees on April 8.
"Obviously, this is a competitive place for all of us. You have to be good at what you do, and we all know what's at stake. Nobody knows that more than Chris," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said of Tillman's rotation status. "But I'm certainly not going to have Chris read about his manager [saying anything about that]. It's tough because you're pulling hard for him, like all your pitchers, because you know what he's capable of and how much it means to him."
Tillman said losing his spot is not something he can worry about.
"I've got to move forward and try to get better," Tillman said. "If you start thinking about that kind of stuff, you will not get very far. So move on, and get better for the next one."
Facing Barria, who was recalled from Triple-A to make the spot start, the O's didn't record their first hit until Trey Mancini's one-out single to center field in the sixth. Mancini scored on Manny Machado's two-out single, and Chris Davis drove in Machado with the fourth hit of the inning.
The Orioles were outscored, 25-12, in the three-game series.
"We see the potential of this lineup," Jones said. "The first six innings, we didn't get a hit, and then, we got four hits in five hitters. You can see how quick strike of an offense we really are. But it's been too far and in between. Playing behind is not easy, but it's not an excuse for our woes."
Machado, who went 2-for-4 with two RBIs, has 14 multi-hit games this season, tying him with San Diego's Eric Hosmer for the Major League lead. Machado has hit safely in 25 of 31 games this year.
HE SAID IT
"[He was] pitching well with a 10-0 lead. No really, it makes it a lot easier. It fits right in with him. He's going to throw a lot of offspeed to hitters and use hitters' aggressiveness against them, and he's pitched well." -- Showalter, on what made Barria effective
The Orioles continue their West Coast road trip as they head to Oakland for a three-game weekend series against the A's. Andrew Cashner will start for the O's on Friday night at 10:05 p.m. ET opposite A's starter Daniel Mengden. Cashner is 1-0 with a 3.93 ERA against Oakland in four career games (three starts).
Brittany Ghiroli has covered the Orioles for MLB.com since 2010. Follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli, and listen to her podcast.