O's seek solution to recent rough patch

Baltimore has dropped 7 of 9, 3 out in AL East race

O's seek solution to recent rough patch

BALTIMORE -- The Orioles slipped out of first place for the first time all season May 1, and they'll close the month in their roughest stretch of the season and three games behind the Red Sox.

The O's, who suffered a 6-2 loss to Boston on Tuesday, have dropped seven of their past nine games and went 14-13 in May after finishing five games over .500 (14-9) in April.

"Trying to figure out a reason or find a reason for stuff like this is tough to do. It's kind of like when things are going good, it's the snowball effect," infielder Paul Janish said. "To a certain extent, that's kind of what we have going right now. It's either you can't get the big hit or like tonight, we fell behind early and [Kevin] Gausman did a great job getting through six innings and helped us out there.

Janish's diving stop

"It's one of those where I don't think there's anything in particular to pinpoint. As quickly as the game goes the other way, it can go our way, too, and that's what we're waiting for, and we look forward to that happening sooner or later."

The Orioles have to hope its as soon as Wednesday, where they'll try to avoid a series loss in the four-game home set. Included in the recent stretch has been a season-high four-game losing streak, which included a series sweep in Houston. The offense has scored two of fewer runs in five of their recent seven losses and the rotation has also had some issues.

"I think it's pretty obvious that we're kind of struggling right now, but hopefully we can just kind of turn it around and even this series up," said Gausman, who allowed three homers in the first two innings. "They are the best team in baseball right now, so you have to be on your game and if you're not, it's tough against this team, against their lineup, against their bullpen. Their starters are pitching well, too, right now, obviously, so it seems like everything is clicking for them right now."

Not so for Baltimore, which has five wins in its past 15 games and isn't playing well -- or getting the breaks -- to get out of its funk.

"You go through periods where kind of everything falls your way, then you go through periods where they jump up and catch balls. A squared-up ball to the one place in the park that it stays in," manager Buck Showalter said. "Chris [Davis] hits a home run and we can't get a camera angle that will show it. We finally got one that showed it was fair. I think everybody knew it was probably fair, but if they had called it fair, they wouldn't have overturned it. So those are some of those things that you present for yourself that matter a lot when you get into some deficits early.

Umpires rule fly ball foul

"You've got to stay away from that kind of, I don't want to say that 'here we go again' mentality, but certainly that something where you follow a pattern for a few games early in the game and it challenges you."

Brittany Ghiroli has covered the Orioles for MLB.com since 2010. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli, and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.