CHICAGO (AP) ¿ Jeff Samardzija thought he would dominate the way he often does. Instead, he walked away frustrated with another loss. Samardzija struggled in a rare rough outing and the Chicago Cubs lost 7-2 to Washington, completing a day-night doubleheader sweep on a rainy Saturday night.
Members of the Orioles starting rotation have had their struggles getting deep into games, but right-hander Jason Hammel gave the team a gritty six-inning effort against the Dodgers in Game 1 of Saturday's doubleheader.
The sting from the wrenching, bitter end of the Washington Nationals' first playoff run might have faded for some by the dead of winter, but not, apparently, for the man at the very top of the organization, not for the 87-year-old real estate tycoon who grew up in Washington rooting for the Senators.
The Orioles were just two outs away from taking a commanding 2-1 lead in the best-of-five series. But a pair of solo homers by Raul Ibanez quickly reversed the roles and put the Orioles on the brink of elimination.
By the end of Tuesday night, Orioles manager Buck Showalter had reached the 1,000-win milestone, left-hander Brian Matusz had sidestepped club infamy and designated hitter Nick Johnson had finally exhaled.
Orioles center fielder Adam Jones said after Wednesday night's 6-4 extra-inning loss to the Yankees that the Orioles played well throughout the series and need to take the same attitude and momentum into Toronto.