Williamson finds slim margin for error as O's skid Reliever blames 'bad pitch' for igniting Yankees rally

August 15, 1993|By Jim Henneman | Jim Henneman,Staff Writer

NEW YORK -- These are not the best of times for Orioles relief pitchers. But Mark Williamson said the recent work overload was not responsible for yesterday's 4-2 loss to the Yankees.

"I felt all right," said Williamson, working on one day's rest after throwing a total of 78 pitches during the final two games in Detroit. "We're just going through a spell where we can't afford to make a mistake."

With two out in the sixth in a 2-2 game, the Yankees' Spike Owen turned a Williamson "mistake" into a rally-starting double. Pat Kelly drove home Owen with a single, moved to second on a wild pitch and scored on a single by Mike Gallego.

"I got two quick outs, made a bad pitch and before you know it two runs are in and you're saying, 'What's going on here?' " Williamson said. "The double didn't bother me that much. I thought I made a good pitch to Kelly. He usually pulls the ball against me, but he dropped his hands and hit it back through the middle. Then I hurt myself with the wild pitch."

John O'Donoghue, thanks to a spectacular catch by Brady Anderson that took a home run away from Mike Stanley, and Mike Oquist combined to pitch two scoreless innings after Williamson departed.

"What we've got to remember," said Williamson, "is that as bad as we've played these last five games, we're still only 3 1/2 games back. We played well before and picked up four games, and we've given three of them back.

"Now we've got to go about it like these games haven't happened. We can't kid ourselves either -- when things are going bad, it's easy to sit back and say, 'Those guys got the breaks.'

"We just got our butts kicked in Detroit, but we've been in both of the games here, and these are the ones that hurt," Williamson said. "[Don] Mattingly gets jammed and gets a blooper [to drive in two runs] and we end the game with two rocket line drives for outs. The important thing is to put these games behind us."

The only way to do that, of course, is with a few wins, and the Orioles right now are struggling to get just one.

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