Game 48: NYY vs. BAL — Less than charming afternoon

I’ve always heard the Baltimore uses “Charm City” as its primary nickname, and honestly, I’ve never really cared much to figure out why. But watching today’s game was exhausting, so I reluctantly turned to Google to answer a question I never really had. Apparently, in the 1970s, an ad executive was hired to transform Baltimore’s seedy reputation (satirically referenced in the Hairspray movie and musical) into something that might increase tourism and new residents. So, they came up with “Charm City”, as in “Come see Baltimore for all its charm“. There was even a campaign that gave out charms for a charm bracelet as people checked in to see the “sites of the city”.

Of course, they also tried a handful of other marketing campaigns through the years, but “Charm City” stuck enough, thanks in part to their public bus system being named the Charm City Circulator and now a popular local bakery made famous thanks to reality TV. How charming it really is depends on your perspective, I guess. But seeing as I’ve only seen the city as enemy territory (or breezed through it on an East Coast road trip years ago), I’ve yet to discover this mystical “charm”.

Jordan Montgomery got roughed up a bit in today’s start against the Orioles in Camden Yards. He threw 100 pitches into just the 5th inning, giving up 8 hits, a walk, and 3 runs (though only 1 was earned), and striking out 5 Baltimore batters.

The first batter of the game singled, moved to 2nd on a ground out, and then scored on a 2-out single. After another single put runners on the corners, Montgomery got a well-placed strikeout to get out the jam in that 1st inning. Then in the 3rd, with 1 out, a batter reached 1st on a messy fielding error and moved to 2nd on a 2-out single. And a double scored both runners (neither were considered earned due to the timing of the error).

With 2 runners on base in the 5th and just 1 out, the Yankees turned to reliever Jonathan Holder to set things right. Something he did quite well with 2 amazing strikeouts. Holder breezed through the 6th inning, setting the Yankees back on the right course. Chasen Shreve’s 2-innings found a similar momentum, shutting the Orioles down for the remainder of the game. Collectively, the Yankees pitching staff worked an impressive 11 strikeouts.

But that certainly wasn’t enough to do much against the Orioles. They had opportunities this afternoon, but only managed to cobble together a few successful offensive plays. In the 2nd, Starlin Castro was hit by a pitch to lead-off the inning, moved to 2nd on a fly out, made it to 3rd on Gregorius’ single, and then scored on Aaron Hicks sacrifice fly to tie up the game at that point. And Aaron Judge led-off the 7th with a monster solo home run up the middle, his 17th of the season to put the Yankees just shy of the O’s lead.

But with the new relievers in the 8th and 9th innings, the Yankees failed to do more than make 6 outs fairly easy for the Orioles.

Final score: 3-2 Orioles.

Before the game today, local service men joined the starting Orioles on the field for a moment of silence and for a truly amazing rendition of the national anthem by SFC Randy Wight, who came back to sing “God Bless America” during the 7th inning stretch.

Being so close to our nation’s capital, the plethora of active servicemen and women serves as a reminder to us. In the Bronx, the Yankees honor their service at every home game. But today, the country stops to remember those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for their country. We carry their legacy with us everyday and express our gratitude to them and their families for their willingness to serve and protect and defend our country.

You are not forgotten. Thank you.

Go Yankees!

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