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The aura of a series sweep usually only lasts as long as the team keeps winning. The aura the Orioles had created with their 3-0 sweep over the Red Sox ended Monday, thanks to a 7-0 loss to the Yankees.
After a strong performance from the pitching staff in Boston, the O's found themselves in a lot of trouble on Monday night. Jorge Lopez didn't make it out of the fifth inning and was charged with four runs. Shawn Armstrong and Paul Fry combined to retire two batters, all the while giving up three hits, two walks and three runs.
The loss isn't solely on the pitchers, since you can't win if you don't score. Cedric Mullins and Pedro Severino stayed hot, but the O's got nothing out of their 2-3-4 hitters.
Thankfully, it's just one game. But it's a reminder that as fun as the series sweep over Boston was, there's going to be a lot of losing coming the Orioles' way this summer.
As I wrote before the season, the Orioles need to be judged on how their young talent develops over the course of the season, not necessarily of how many games they win.
Take Mac Sceroler for instance. This Rule 5 Draft pick wasn't even a guarantee to make the Opening Day roster, which would have sent him back to the Reds. Sceroler inherited a bases-loaded situation on Monday with Aaron Judge at the dish, only to strike out Judge on a 3-2 fastball.
By the end of the night, Sceroler had pitched 2.2 innings, allowing no hits and no runs. He'd walked two, but struck out four. It was a pretty stellar debut for a guy throwing his first pitches ever outside of A-level baseball.
Sceroler displayed exactly why the Orioles took a chance on him in the Rule 5 Draft. His fastball and curveball both exceeded the league average in terms of movement and his splitter was responsible for three of his four strikeouts.
The stuff is there.
In fact, there's a lot of "stuff" on this team, whether it be amongst the position players or the pitchers. And that's what I'll be watching this season.
So yes, I'm peeved at a shutout loss to the Yankees. But thankfully, there's more to this season than that.