The Orioles had a chance for a feel-good win on Cedric Mullins’ first night in the majors, and with the kid making a major contribution. But Boston’s potent offense and some very shaky Orioles pitching didn’t allow it.
The O’s led 8-3 after the third inning but lost 19-12 tonight in front of 23,649 at Camden Yards in the opener of a four-game weekend series. The Orioles (35-81) have lost six of their past eight games. They are 2-11 versus Boston this year and 2-14 in the last 16 between these teams.
Mullins had a strong debut after he got the call-up earlier today from Triple-A Norfolk. He had an RBI double to right off a 97 mph fastball in his first at-bat in the second inning and an RBI single an inning later. He went 3-for-4 with two doubles, a walk and three runs scored batting ninth and playing in center field.
Mullins made Orioles history in the last of the ninth when he doubled. He became the first O’s player to ever produce three hits in his major league deubt.
The Orioles were officially eliminated from the American League East race with this loss.
Staked to the early five-run lead, O’s right-hander Dylan Bundy could not hold it in his latest shaky outing. With an 8-5 lead in the sixth. Bundy took the mound and allowed a homer, single and walk to end his night. It would get a lot worse that frame, as Boston would get five walks in the inning and score three times off Miguel Castro and they got inherited runs off Donnie Hart. Boston led 11-8 after a six-run sixth. But the Orioles scored twice in the home half to make it 11-10.
Bundy went five innings plus and gave up eight hits and eight runs (seven earned) with four walks and two home runs on 93 pitches. His ERA has increased from 4.08 to 4.70 his last six starts. In that span he has given up 26 earned runs in 30 1/3 innings for a 7.71 ERA. Bundy has allowed five runs or more four times in those six starts.
Xander Bogaerts hit a three-run shot off Bundy in the first and Brock Holt added a solo shot in the sixth off Bundy. Bogaerts drove in four while Benintendi, Holt and Mookie Betts had three RBIs each. The Orioles allowed a season-high 17 runs Aug. 2 at Texas and topped that by two tonight.
Right-hander Nathan Eovaldi was making his third start for his new team. He threw 15 scoreless the first two games, but tonight allowed 10 hits and eight runs (four earned) in 2 2/3 against Baltimore. The Orioles held that early 8-3 lead after the third and went 10-for-17 against Eovaldi.
But as Boston drew walks (10 for the game) and piled up runs (14 total in innings six through eight). They overtook the Orioles, scoring two in the fourth, six in the sixth, three in the seventh and five in the eighth. A five-run deficit had turned into a nine-run lead and seven-run win. In the end, the team with the best record in the majors added to that and the one with worst mark took yet another loss.
Boston is 82-35 and has won seven of eight and 26 of its last 32 games. The Red Sox are 40-20 on the road. These clubs play a day-night doubleheader tomorrow, with games at 1:05 and 7:05 p.m.
Bundy on his outing tonight: “I left a slider over the plate there in the first inning and they got three runs on the board pretty quick. So, that doesn’t usually help you coming out of the gate like that. But the walks, we had a lot of walks tonight, especially me. So, have to cut those down. That’s not really acceptable.”
Bundy on whether this is a mechanical issue: “Yes, slightly maybe, it could be. But everyone has seen it. I can hit the corners when I want to. I’ve done it in the past. Just have to focus on it in my bullpens and get better for the next game.”
Mullins on his big night: “It was huge. Just having my family out there to support it was a real big moment for me.”
Mullins on Adam Jones having him lead the team onto the field tonight: “In all honesty, I thought he was messing with me. I was looking around, ‘So is the pitcher good? All right?’ And all the players were saying, ‘Hey, go. You’re leading it.’ So I took their word for it. And went out on the field. And then I took the scenic route. The long way around.
What did that mean to you?: “It’s hard to explain. It kind of felt like a pass-the-torch situation. Just being able to feel like you’re taking charge of your debut. That’s the only way I can describe it.”
Mullins on being the first in team history to debut with three hits: “That’s a long time for a team to be around, and for me to be the first one, it’s just a privilege.”
Mullins on team welcoming him so well: “It’s awesome. We’ve been around since spring training. I kind of showed what I can do, flashes. To be able to play nine innings, it’s special.”