Needless to say, the Orioles were eager to get out of Toronto last night, and it wasn't because the players were sick of doing the math it takes to convert American dollars to Canadian dollars. The buses leaving the Rogers Centre's loading docks filled up pretty shortly after the game. Everybody wanted out---quick.
The only thing tougher than being swept by the worst team in the AL East is losing all three games by just one run. Those types of loses can kill a team's morale. It's hard not to fall into the "why try?" mode after that. Players have told me that losing when you truly put forth the effort hurts much worse than getting blown out. These last three hurt.
As George Sherrill said after the loss, "We'll find out what we're about in Boston." Today's game against the Red Sox really is going to be a gut check for the Orioles. I honestly think they'll come to Fenway ready to play. This team is so different from Orioles teams I've covered in the past. They don't mope.
Speaking of George Sherrill, he and Jim Johnson both deserve credit for always doing my postgame interviews, even after very tough nights. Not all players do that, but Sherrill always steps up to the microphone in good and bad times. That says something about the character of a player.
Along those same lines, on Tuesday night when Dennis Sarfate had a bad outing, he didn't do press afterward. Wednesday afternoon, he made a point to find me outside the clubhouse and apologize for not being available. He said he wasn't thinking and just left as soon as the game was done. Those types of moves will earn him a lot of respect in the media, and it only added to my high opinion of Sarfate as a person.