Catcher Welington Castillo hit his first career grand slam as the Orioles beat the Chicago White Sox 10-6 to snap a six-game losing streak and an 11-game road losing streak. They get back to the .500 mark at 32-32.
The Orioles scored nine runs in the fourth through the sixth innings, but Castillo had the game’s biggest hit.
The O’s came to bat in the fifth down 5-4. They rallied with two outs and none on. Mark Trumbo and Jonathan Schoop singled around a walk to Trey Mancini. Then Castillo blasted a Miguel González 90 mph fastball over the center field wall for an 8-5 lead. He drilled his first career grand slam 439 feet. He had gone seven straight games without a homer or RBI, but drove in a career-high five runs tonight.
Earlier, Bundy and the O’s trailed 5-1 after the second as he allowed two runs in the first and three in the second. Tim Anderson singled in two in the first and Matt Davidson hit a solo home run in the second. And a throwing error by second baseman Schoop allowed another run to score.
In the Orioles fourth, they closed to 5-4 on Castillo’s fielder’s choice grounder and Hyun Soo Kim’s two-run single.
After Castillo’s slam gave Baltimore the 8-5 lead, the Orioles added two in the sixth on J.J. Hardy’s double and RBI singles by Adam Jones and Mancini. Mancini went 3-for-4 with a walk and is batting .299 with eight hits his last 18 at-bats.
After the early struggles, Bundy settled in and put up zeros in the third, fourth and fifth, but his pitch count escalated early and Mike Wright came on in the sixth. He pitched two scoreless and gave way to Mychal Givens. He gave up Alen Hanson’s pinch-hit homer in the ninth. It was Hanson’s first career homer. Brad Brach came in to get the last out.
Bundy does get the win and is 7-5 with a 3.29 ERA. Over five innings he allowed six hits and five runs (four earned) with three walks and four strikeouts. This was just the second time in his 14 starts he failed to pitch six or more innings. The O’s have just one quality start over their past nine games.
But tonight they did get a win, and this current run ends two losses shy of tying the team record for consecutive road losses. That was 13 straight in 1988.
The Orioles can split this four-game series with a win on Thursday afternoon when Chris Tillman (1-4, 8.01 ERA) pitches against lefty David Holmberg (1-0, 2.74 ERA).
Some postgame quotes:
Manager Buck Showalter on Schoop drawing a walk before the grand slam after he was behind 0-2 in count: “That’s something we’ve seen a lot this year that we haven’t seen a lot in the past with Jon that makes it seem like he’s graduating to another level. The walks are there, and it’s a confidence thing too, where he doesn’t feel like he’s got to go out of the zone to do things. Those are disciplined at-bats.”
Showalter on this being just one win, with many more needed: “I think everybody knows in there it’s not just one. There’s too many games, too many variables - pitchers, who’s hot the next day, too many things going on there. But I’d a lot rather have that possibility. It’s been a long day here.”
Castillo on his slam: “Honestly, I like that situation. I had that situation earlier. I am that kind of guy that likes that situation because I am not afraid to fail. This game is about making adjustments. I wanted to be the guy and he left me a fastball out over (the plate) and I put a good swing on it.”
Castillo, asked if win relieves pressure on the team: “I won’t say pressure. We have a great ballclub and we just need to keep doing what we’re doing today. Keep swinging the bats and hopefully the pitching stops the other offense. That is going to come. We are not too worried about it. It’s a long season and we have a great team. At some point we are going to do what we know to do.”
Bundy on importance of the win: “You can’t turn around losing. We needed a win and we got one today, and hopefully we can get one tomorrow and go from there.”
Bundy on his first two innings and his last three: “Throwing and pitching. I wasn’t executing in the first two innings, then started pitching the rest of the game.”
Schoop on Castillo’s slam: “That was really big. Put us ahead. Dylan pitched good today. A couple mistakes, even by myself, throwing the balls away, but things ended up fine and we came away with a victory. He’s doing a really good job, and it’s nice having him around, not only on the field but in the clubhouse. He’s a really good teammate.”