“Looking back on it, I just should have ran and covered first because (second baseman Steve) Tolleson was playing short right field right there and it would have been a really easy play for him,” Reynolds said. “It’s one of those reaction plays where I think my third base instincts kicked in and just tried to get everything I could get. Obviously it was a tone-setter.”
The Twins’ seven-run first tied an Orioles season-high for runs allowed in one inning (May 7 against Texas, April 15 at Toronto). The Twins (37-52) hadn’t scored more than five runs in a game since July 3.
Tillman’s early exit forced the Orioles bullpen into a long day, which is starting to take a toll on a relief corps that was one of baseball’s best just a week ago.
The Orioles pen yielded 12 runs of its own on Monday night. And in the four games since the All-Star break, the Orioles bullpen has been forced into 23 2/3 innings of service, pitching to a 7.61 ERA in that span. At the break, the pen owned a 2.75 ERA.
How bad was it for the Orioles? With runners on second and third and two outs, Ben Revere’s grounder up the middle hit off the front of the second base bag and bounced away from shortstop J.J. Hardy to score two runs and make it 10-2. Even All-Star closer Jim Johnson was tagged for five runs in the eighth inning, removed from the game after retiring one of the six batters he faced.
Reynolds hit a three-run homer in the fifth for the Orioles, his eight of the season and just his second off a left-hander, and had his first four-RBI game of the season. Endy Chavez added a two-run homer in the ninth, his first since June 2. Nick Markakis and Adam Jones had three hits each for the Orioles, but that seven-run inning was too much to overcome.