TONIGHT: McDowell-McDonald matchup rewinds season to happier time

August 12, 1991|By Josie Karp | Josie Karp,Evening Sun Staff

Let's start again.

You haven't seen with your own eyes how badly the Orioles perform at home. You don't know about the season-spoiling injury to Glenn Davis. You can't imagine that Jeff Ballard will be in Rochester by August.

All you know is that tonight Ben McDonald takes on Jack McDowell at Memorial Stadium. It is Monday. For all intents and ** purposes it could be Opening Day, for it was a McDonald-McDowell matchup that you pictured when you took a look at the 1991 schedule last winter.

All season long the Orioles have been asking you to remember, but maybe the time has come to forget. Forget about the no-hitter yesterday. The five-game losing streak. Forget it all.

Oh, you can remember some of it, like the production of Cal Ripken and the potential of Juan Bell.

Think back to last year, to McDonald's first start. It came against the White Sox and McDowell. McDonald was awesome, needing only 85 pitches and just over two hours to down Chicago, 2-0. So much to look forward to.

Forget about McDonald's injuries, the stints on the disabled list, the losses.

Now, back to reality.

Tonight the Orioles look to McDonald (5-6, 5.27 ERA) to end their losing streak. McDowell (14-6, 3.30) is looking to join the Twins' Scott Erickson as the winningest pitcher in baseball this season.

Tomorrow night the Orioles and Texas will play a doubleheader. The Rangers' Rafael Palmeiro (.348) leads the majors in hitting, is tied for first in the AL in doubles (32) and hits (152), and is second to Cal Ripken in total bases and multi-hit games. The Rangers' Julio Franco (.339) is third in the AL batting race.

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