R.A. Dickey stood before the media in the Blue Jays’ dressing room after Saturday afternoon’s game and pinpointed the main factor behind a 6-5 loss to the Baltimore Orioles: an at-bat in the first inning.

“Well, I’d say a walk, a couple of hits and a few runs, that’s what happened early,” Dickey said of allowing three runs in the opening frame. “If I’d taken the (Nick) Markakis at-bat away in the first, we probably win the game.”

Markakis drew a one-out walk to put two runners aboard. Dickey coaxed the dangerous Adam Jones into a fly-ball out, then gave up an RBI double to Chris Davis.

Still, Dickey had two outs. He seemed to be in control of the inning, but the next batter, J.J. Hardy, rapped a single to centre field to bring home two more runs.

that walks make a difference in the game.

After that, the questioning turned to the conditions. The Jays opened the roof on a sunny but chilly day. Dickey, who has said since the outset of spring training that he prefers humidity when he’s pitching, wouldn’t use it as an excuse, but it was a factor.

“They know what I like, it’s up to them to make that decision,” he said of the organization’s decision to go lid-less.

And so the Jays lost and dropped to 20-29. Their supposed ace fell to 4-6, allowing all six runs on nine hits, including two homers, with three walks and four strikeouts in 6.2 innings of work.

“Tough to get a feel, I got into it a bit into the game, but that’s certainly not an excuse,” Dickey said. “It wasn’t ideal conditions, but I’ve pitched before in these conditions and done fine. Again, it’s certainly not an excuse. The noose can be solely around my neck today — when you score six runs (sic), you should win.”

Well, yes and no. The Jays are proving that. They have rapped out 30 hits and 11 runs in the last two games and lost both. Their exuberant, aggressive approach at the plate stands in stark contrast to the maturity and poise displayed by the Orioles.