Leftovers for breakfast

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Dillon Tate wasn’t expecting to make his earliest appearance in a game in more than a year last night. The bullpen phone rang with no outs in the fourth inning and two runners on base, and he grabbed his glove and a ball.

This wasn’t playoff baseball, but it sure felt and sounded like it.

“It’s just part of the job to be ready when your name is called,” said Tate, who earned the win after allowing one run in 1 2/3 innings in the Orioles’ 9-6 victory over the Blue Jays at Camden Yards.

Manager Brandon Hyde needed to keep the deficit at three runs and turned to one of his high-leverage relievers. Tate inherited runners on the corners, didn’t let the Blue Jays expand their lead by performing a nifty escape act, and watched the Orioles score five times in the bottom half.

The bullpen covered the last six innings and the Orioles moved within 3 1/2 games of the last wild card spot.

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Orioles fight back from three-run deficit to defeat Blue Jays 9-6 (updated)

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Manager Brandon Hyde has seen the many examples this season, when his club appeared on the verge of spiraling and instead dug in its heels and pushed upward. Being swept in yesterday’s doubleheader tested its resolve again, its sense of direction.

The Orioles regained their balance. When they absolutely, positively had to do it.

Down by three runs early, they fought back rather than folding and gave themselves a chance to split the series by scrambling the usual bullpen pattern and defeating the Blue Jays 9-6 at Camden Yards.

Bo Bichette hit his fourth home run in two nights and came within a triple of the cycle, but the Orioles scored five times in the bottom of the third inning and used four relievers to reach the finish line in front. Gasping for air while crossing it but strong enough to defend themselves.

"It's a big win just because of where we are in the standings and the team we're playing," Hyde said. "Real excited about how we came back tonight. Kind of pieced it together, bullpen-wise and a couple nice rallies."

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Notes on Lyles, rotation, new relievers, Hays and more

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The Orioles kept Jordan Lyles at home today while he recovers from his flu-like symptoms. His status hasn’t changed and the club won’t predict his next start.

Lyles was pushed back from Game 1 to Game 2 yesterday, then scratched after attempting to warm in the bullpen.

“He’s feeling a little bit better today,” said manager Brandon Hyde. “Still feeling sick, so not here, and hopefully he gets better soon.”

Hyde said Lyles is “day-to-day right now.” Dean Kremer is starting Wednesday’s series finale against the Blue Jays, and the Orioles are off Thursday before hosting the Red Sox in a weekend series.

The Orioles are listing Austin Voth, Spenser Watkins and Kyle Bradish as starters against the Red Sox, who are countering with Brayan Bello, Michael Wacha and Rich Hill.

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Orioles lineup vs. Blue Jays

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Gunnar Henderson is the Orioles’ designated hitter tonight for the third game of their series against the Blue Jays at Camden Yards.

Henderson played second base and shortstop in yesterday’s doubleheader.

The rest of the lineup should look familiar.

Ramón Urías is the third baseman and Rougned Odor is playing second.

Austin Hays is in left field and Anthony Santander is in right.

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Orioles add relievers Reed and Cano to active roster

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The Orioles made the anticipated roster move today to reinforce their bullpen, optioning left-hander Bruce Zimmermann to Triple-A Norfolk after he worked six innings yesterday in Game 2 of the doubleheader and adding right-hander Jake Reed to the active roster.

There was more.

Left-hander Nick Vespi also was optioned after appearing on three consecutive days, and right-hander Yennier Cano was recalled from Norfolk.

Reed, 29, was claimed off waivers yesterday from the Dodgers. He allowed one run and six hits in 4 2/3 innings after Los Angeles selected him off waivers from the Mets in July.

Reed, drafted by the Twins in the fifth round in 2014 out of the University of Oregon, has registered a 5.57 ERA and 1.381 WHIP in 20 games over two seasons.

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Santander learning more about Bonilla as they find common ground through the air

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Anthony Santander admits that he knows nothing about Bobby Bonilla’s playing days and how their Orioles careers intersected over the weekend.

“I just heard about his contract,” Santander said, laughing. “I want his agent.”

The Mets owe Bonilla $1,193,248.20 every July 1 through 2035, when he’s 72-years-old, as part of their agreement on deferred money after releasing him following the 1999 season. Bonilla’s agent, Dennis Gilbert, possessed the contract until it sold at auction last month.

Bonilla played for the Orioles for 1 ½ seasons, beginning on July 28, 1995 when they acquired him from the Mets for outfielders Damon Buford and Alex Ochoa. He amassed 28 home runs in 1996, and no Orioles switch-hitter reached 25 since then until Santander on Saturday.

This is where they are joined together. Santander took my word for it.

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Akin makes emergency start, Bichette hits three homers and O's swept in doubleheader (updated)

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Jordan Lyles began to warm in the bullpen in preparation for his Game 2 start, stopped early and headed back inside the clubhouse covered in sweat. The veteran who prides himself on eating innings didn’t have the stomach for it today.

He tried. The Orioles pushed back Lyles from Game 1, hoping the extra hours would let him recover. He put on his glove, grabbed a ball and threw.

Pretty much anything that could go wrong for the Orioles injected itself into their doubleheader.

Left-hander Keegan Akin made the start and lasted 2 1/3 innings and 42 pitches. Nick Vespi replaced him with two runners on base and Bo Bichette homered to left field.

Bichette hit two more home runs off left-hander Bruce Zimmermann, who covered the last six innings, and the Orioles lost to the Blue Jays 8-4 at Camden Yards.

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Blue Jays pull away late for 7-3 victory over Orioles in Game 1 (updated)

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Mike Baumann was the first Orioles starter today but the fourth player out of the dugout to begin Game 1, turning sideways and skipping over the line before jogging to the mound.

The first time he’s entered from the bench rather than the bullpen in 12 major league appearances. The first time he’s been tasked with quieting the Blue Jays and their raucous lineup while the Orioles were 2 ½ games behind them in the wild card chase.

Baumann gave the Orioles five innings of three-run ball, some soft hits and defensive lapses hurting him. Length that manager Brandon Hyde appreciated in a doubleheader.

But how long until the Orioles rallied for a hugely important win?

Hyde waited and waited. They twice got within a run. The crowd got louder. Anthony Santander hit two home runs. But there wouldn’t be a comeback, with the Orioles now hoping for a split after losing 7-3.

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Lyles scratched from Game 1 start and moved back to later today

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The Orioles intended to start veteran Jordan Lyles in Game 1 of today’s doubleheader against the Blue Jays, with Mike Baumann making his first major league start in Game 2. However, Lyles woke up feeling a little under the weather and was pushed back.

Manager Brandon Hyde called executive vice president/general manager Mike Elias early this morning to pass along the news.

“We decided to give him a few extra hours and we flip-flopped,” Hyde said.

There’s the obvious concern that Lyles will be scratched later today. The Orioles must cover at least 18 innings.

“I’m fairly confident that he’ll be able to start Game 2,” Hyde said, “but we’re keeping our fingers crossed. We’re hopeful.”

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Orioles lineup for Game 1 vs. Blue Jays

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The Orioles optioned reliever Rico Garcia after yesterday’s 5-0 loss to the Athletics and recalled Beau Sulser from Triple-A Norfolk. A new arm for the bullpen in today’s makeup doubleheader with the Blue Jays at Camden Yards.

Garcia pitched yesterday and retired all four batters he faced.

Mike Baumann is on the mound for Game 1, his first major league start and 12th appearance.  He faced the Blue Jays on Sept. 12, 2021 in Baltimore and allowed six runs in three innings. Lourdes Gurriel Jr. hit a two-run homer.

In Baumann’s last three starts with Norfolk, he held opponents to two earned runs and three total over 16 innings.

Gunnar Henderson is playing second base again in Game 1. Jesús Aguilar is the designated hitter.

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This, that and the other

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The Orioles aren’t in a place in their collective lives when they can take an opponent lightly. Consecutive 100-loss seasons ruin that privilege.

However, they were vulnerable to a letdown after winning back-to-back series in Houston and Cleveland, and with the Blue Jays in town starting today for a huge four-game series.

In the middle were the lowly Oakland Athletics, who won three of four against the Orioles in April but are a disaster. This is a bad team because it was constructed that way. The sympathy runs deep in Baltimore.

“This is a young team that we’re playing against,” said manager Brandon Hyde, choosing more delicate words. “We’ve been in that situation before, also.”

Hyde emphasized the importance of winning yesterday, saying it was “extremely important” to finish what they started.

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Orioles shut out in bid for series sweep (updated)

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The writing seemed to appear on the wall early today. Not the one in left field that robs home runs. The proverbial wall with clues to the game’s outcome.

Gunnar Henderson registered the first two outs by charging a bunt and throwing across his body, and diving to his left to corral a ground ball. Two batters, two more reasons to believe that Henderson is going to be special.

That part was accurate.

The Orioles immediately staged a rally in the bottom of the first inning but failed to score. And they failed to take a lead today or complete the series sweep against a team with the worst record in the American League.

Don’t always trust the wall.

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Hearing from Baumann, Wells and Hyde before today's series finale

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The Orioles are handing Mike Baumann the ball in Monday’s doubleheader against the Blue Jays at Camden Yards, whether in the first or second game, allowing the right-hander to make his first appearance in the majors since June 19 and his first career start.

Baumann has pitched in relief in 11 games, including seven this year after breaking camp with the Orioles. He allowed six earned runs and seven total, with 13 hits, six walks and nine strikeouts, over 12 innings in 2022.

The stay is expected to be brief, with Baumann on the taxi squad today and serving as the 29th man on Monday.

“It’s a good feeling,” he said today. “Coming up here and seeing the guys, it’s always awesome, and they’re playing well. The energy in the clubhouse is great, so to be able to be part of it for the next couple days is going to be awesome.”

Baumann’s season has been inconsistent, with a 4.20 ERA and 1.317 WHIP in 20 games (nine starts) with Norfolk. He’s walked 25 batters and struck out 81 in 60 innings.

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Orioles lineup vs. Athletics

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The Orioles will go for the sweep of the Athletics today with Gunnar Henderson starting at second base for the second time in the majors.

Henderson is 6-for-15 with two doubles, one home run, one RBI, a stolen base and two runs scored in his four major league games. His four-game hitting streak is the longest by an Oriole to begin his career since Joey Rickard (seven) from April 4-12, 2016.

Adley Rutschman is the designated hitter. Ramón Urías is playing third base.

Cedric Mullins hit his 50th career home run last night. He’s in center field again today.

Anthony Santander, starting in right field, is the first Orioles switch-hitter with 25 home runs in a season since Bobby Bonilla hit 28 in 1996.

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Mercado on Wells: "What a great human being"

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The Orioles are hatching their plan for Tyler Wells, arranging a bullpen session for him in Baltimore and sending him out again for another minor league start. Maybe just one. Maybe two.

The reports came back from high Single-A Aberdeen that Wells looked and felt good Friday night, with no lingering issues related to his strained left oblique. He threw 31 pitches in 2 1/3 innings, the only run against him scoring after he left.

“He looked outstanding,” said Aberdeen manager Roberto Mercado. “Commanded all of his pitches really well, put any pitch where he wanted. I know he talked about wanting to command the fastball on the outside part of the plate, and he’s dotting it right there on the black. Pitched really, really well. Retired the first seven guys and was in complete control the whole time.”

The Orioles had pitch counts in mind for Wells and Grayson Rodriguez, who started the previous night on his rehab assignment and also threw 31.

“We had to pull him there,” Mercado said of Wells. “Trust me, I’d love to keep him in. Similar to Grayson. I wish I had the chance to leave him in a little longer. He’s got electric stuff and it was great to see him back on the mound after being out since June.”

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Orioles hit five home runs and move 10 games above .500 (updated)

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The Orioles wouldn’t take the field tonight until everyone gathered in the clubhouse to celebrate backup catcher Robinson Chirinos reaching 10 years of major league service time. They gave him a cake, a signed bat and custom-made sneakers. Manager Brandon Hyde hugged Chirinos twice, called him “brother.”

Chirinos propped the bat on his shoulder while expressing his appreciation and thanked them for the memories.

“And the ones coming,” he said, “because we’re not done yet.”

No, they aren’t.

Ryan Mountcastle pulled further away from his slump with a pair of two-run homers in his first two at-bats, Cedric Mullins and Anthony Santander reached the flag court and center field seats, respectively, in the fourth, five relievers combined for 5 2/3 scoreless innings, and the Orioles locked up their fifth series win in a row with an 8-1 victory over the Athletics before an announced crowd of 30,853 at Camden Yards.

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Notes on Wells, Henderson, roster, Rutschman and more

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Tyler Wells is slated to throw a bullpen session in Baltimore within the next few days before the Orioles decide his next steps toward a return to their active roster.

Wells began his injury rehab assignment last night at High-A Aberdeen and was charged with one run in 2 1/3 innings. An inherited runner scored after he departed.

The Orioles will give him at least one more start in the minors.

Wells allowed one hit, walked none, struck out three and threw 23 of 31 pitches for strikes. Most important, he felt good afterward.

Manager Brandon Hyde said the organization hasn’t decided on Wells’ role when he’s activated from the injured list.

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Orioles lineup vs. Athletics (updated with roster moves)

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Gunnar Henderson’s fourth major league game won’t put him at a fourth different position.

Henderson is starting at third base and batting fifth tonight against the Athletics at Camden Yards.

Kyle Stowers is in right field. Anthony Santander is the designated hitter.

Adley Rutschman is catching after his pinch-hit, bases-loaded walk last night that broke a 2-2 tie in the eighth inning.

Rutschman, Henderson and Stowers were the first three Orioles draft selections in 2019.

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DL Hall finally makes it to home clubhouse

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DL Hall sat at his locker yesterday and couldn’t draw a crowd. He wasn’t asking for one, but the solitude seemed a bit unusual considering that his major league debut came at Tropicana Field before the Orioles optioned him, and he returned to the majors this week while they were in Cleveland.

Hall hadn’t been inside the home clubhouse until yesterday. He came to the ballpark to sign his contract after the Orioles selected him in the first round of the 2017 draft, and he returned for an event inside the warehouse. That’s it.

The fuss over him sort of fizzling because the media was staking out Gunnar Henderson’s locker across the room. Baseball’s No. 1 prospect arriving in town after homering against the Guardians Wednesday for his first major league hit and singling twice in the series.

Henderson finally walked through the door and spent about six minutes fielding questions, the media arc thickened by multiple layers. Hall eventually got up and left the clubhouse, waiting to take a seat in the bullpen with the other relievers.

“It’s definitely a little bit different feeling than being on the road,” he said. “Being here in front of our home crowd, it’s going to be an unreal experience, something that, ever since I came here to sign my contract, it’s been my dream to get to play on this field, so I’m excited.

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Orioles break tie in eighth inning and win 5-2 (updated)

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The Orioles’ streak of scoreless innings ended tonight at 25 after Oakland’s Tony Kemp lined a two-out, bases-loaded single into right field in the fifth to bring home two runs and tie the game.

There was more important work to be done.

Among the wild card tiebreakers, there’s no mention of shutouts or the succession of them.

Adley Rutschman came off the bench with one out in the eighth and coaxed a bases-loaded walk out of Domingo Acevedo, Jorge Mateo singled to left field on the next pitch to plate two more runs, and the Orioles kept rolling with a 5-2 win over the Athletics to begin a 10-game homestand.

Dean Kremer allowed two runs in six innings for his sixth quality start, and the Orioles reached the 70-win mark and moved nine games above .500 for the first time since May 20, 2017.

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