Delgado, who was roughed up a bit in his last start against the New York Yankees, had a strong outing against the Orioles. He gave up two runs on just three hits and one walk in eight innings while striking out six batters. Perhaps even more importantly, he was able to pitch efficiently, as his eight innings gave the taxed bullpen a break.
"A tremendous outing," manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "I think we took a big step forward with him. … He was terrific."
Unfortunately for Delgado and the Braves, Orioles starter Wei-Yin Chen was just a little bit better. Chen went seven innings, only giving up six hits and a walk to go along with two strikeouts. He was able to induce three double plays in the first three innings to get out of a few jams.
“It’s a shame," catcher David Ross said of Delgado not getting the win. "You’ve got to give credit where credit is due. Their guy kept us off-balance. He got three double-plays in his first three innings. We were swinging the bats well. I thought we were seeing him really good, hitting some balls hard. It’s just one of those things. I feel bad for Randall. He threw the heck out of the ball. Three hits, he did a good job."
Despite Delgado's solid start, he shot himself in the foot a couple of times. He balked in a run while attempting to go from the wind-up to the stretch. He also bunted into a double play with runners on first and second and no one out.
“I just have to step off and I didn’t," Delgado said of the balk. "I didn’t pay attention to that and it was a big mistake and cost us a run.”
The Braves are in the middle of a rough stretch on the schedule, and they are having some trouble scoring runs. They have lost six of their last seven games, and they haven't scored a run in 20 innings.
“I like the way we’re playing certain facets of the game," Chipper Jones said. "We’re pitching it pretty good right now and playing pretty good defense. Just not swinging the bats. It’s tough sledding right now. We’re running into some pretty good pitching, and that combined with some pretty bad hitting, it’s a formula for not scoring a ton of runs.”
Eric O'Flaherty pitched in a game for the first time in nine days when he recorded the last out in the top of the ninth inning.
The Braves will now travel north to face the New York Yankees and attempt to avenge the Yankees' three-game sweep of the Braves less than a week ago. The Braves will send Mike Minor (3-4, 6.01 ERA) to the mound against CC Sabathia (8-3, 3.70 ERA) as the Braves try to cool down the red-hot Yankees.
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