“It was just one of those days. It felt like anything we did didn’t go our way.”
-Dodgers Manager Don Mattingly
The Eutaw Street Chronicles: April 20, 2013
Hitter: Andre Ethier, Los Angeles Dodgers
Pitcher: Jason Hammel, Orioles
When it happened: Top of the first inning, two on, two out
Distance: 383 feet
Final score: Orioles 7 – Dodgers 5
It seemed like it was going to be a long day at Oriole Park at Camden Yards for the Orioles on April 20, 2013. The Los Angeles Dodgers started an Interleague doubleheader with the O’s, following a Friday night rainout, by posting an early 3-0 lead on Andre Ethier’s three-run, Eutaw Street homer at the outset of the first game.
Ethier’s home run off of O’s starter Jason Hammel was the 67th effort to reach Eutaw Street, and at 383 feet was one of the shortest in ballpark history. Fortunately for the Orioles, it was hardly a sign of things to come.
The Dodgers didn’t homer again during the doubleheader, Hammel allowed four earned runs in six innings of work, and the O’s swept the two games by scores of 7-5 and 6-1, respectively.
It was a heck of a way to spend your birthday at the ballpark for Dodgers manager Don Mattingly.
“It was just one of those days,” Mattingly said. “It felt like anything we did didn’t go our way.”
The loss was the Dodgers’ sixth straight, which marked the first time since 1993 that L.A. endured a six-game losing streak in the season’s first month.
“Now that the Dodgers have had a chance to take their $230 million roster out for a spin, they might be finding the most expensive flawed team money can buy,” Bill Plunkett wrote in the Orange County Register.
Arrieta posted a 7.23 ERA in five starts for the 2013 Orioles and spent time at Triple-A Rochester before being traded along with reliever Pedro Strop to the Chicago Cubs in exchange for Steve Clevenger and Scott Feldman on July 2. Arrieta emerged into a Cy Young winner in Chicago.
The April series, like Ethier’s home run and Arrieta’s early returns in Baltimore, was not indicative of how things would turn out later.
The Dodgers won the American League West on the strength of a 92-70 record and beat the Atlanta Braves in the National League Division Series. Their season ended with a 4-2 NLCS loss to the St. Louis Cardinals. Mattingly came in second in N.L. Manager of the Year voting.
The Orioles, meanwhile, finished 85-77 and out of the playoff picture.