Three forearm smashes and a hand slap. That’s what awaited Adam Frazier tonight after he crossed home plate in the first inning. Before he reached the top step of the dugout.
In the middle of the latest beating administered to Yankees starter Luis Severino.
The Orioles sent 11 batters to the plate, scored seven runs and turned ESPN’s first Camden Yards broadcast in five years into a challenge to avoid using every note and anecdote before the top of the second.
Frazier drove a fastball onto the flag court in right field for a three-run homer, the sixth consecutive Oriole to reach base in a 9-3 rout of the Yankees before an announced crowd of 37,429.
The three-game series drew 114,816.
"The crowds have been unbelievable this weekend, and we really appreciate the energy in the ballpark and how much our fans have showed up this weekend to support us and drown out the Yankees fans," said manager Brandon Hyde. "That's been great to see the energy in the ballpark."
"We feel that energy every night," Frazier said. "That's what we like to play in front of is a packed house."
"It's the best," said Adley Rutschman. "When it's packed out and you hear the crowd get into it, there's no better feeling. Everyone gets that much more excited and it just feels like that atmosphere you dream about playing in, and it's here."
The Rays also won today, keeping the Orioles 1 ½ games ahead of them in the division.
The Orioles are 64-41 overall and 7-6 against the Yankees, the first season series win since 2016. Tonight marked their third outburst of seven or more runs against them in an inning. They have gone nine consecutive series against the division without a loss for the first time since 2012.
"A little bit more competitive roster, so that makes it nice," Hyde said. "It's a little more of a fair fight than it has been in the past. We're able to pitch to them. We didn't in the past. And we were able to score some runs, and we had a tough time doing that in the past. We're a lot more talented than my first few years here, so it's a little more fair."
"Anytime you take a season series from anybody, it's great," Frazier said, "but I felt like it was a lot of close games with those guys and they never stop fighting, so even though we put up that big lead in the first, it felt like we had to keep going."
The first six Baltimore batters scored in a game for the first time since July 18, 2017 against the Rangers, per the Elias Sports Bureau.
"Any night you can do it, it's great," Frazier said. "I think it just shows how capable our lineup is. That's a pretty good pitcher out there, Severino, and he's throwing hard. Guys just getting a mistake and hitting it. We found a couple holes early and it just kind of snowballed from there. We're capable of that any night. Just need to make it happen more often."
Severino received a visit from pitching coach Matt Blake after Rutschman, the new leadoff hitter, and Gunnar Henderson singled and Anthony Santander doubled for a 1-0 lead. But manager Aaron Boone didn’t phone his bullpen until Rutschman’s run-scoring single with two outs.
In between were Ryan O’Hearn’s two-run double, Austin Hays’ walk, Frazier’s 13th home run and Jordan Westburg’s infield single and stolen base with one out. Severino struck out three, minuscule consolation for another round of rude treatment.
The Orioles faced Severino on July 6 at Yankee Stadium and collected seven runs and 10 hits in 2 2/3 innings. They scored seven in the third. He was booed lustily.
The offense began to cool tonight, with Severino retiring seven of eight, but Rutschman led off the fourth with a walk and scored on Henderson’s 110.8 mph double, and O’Hearn singled with one out for a 9-2 lead.
Severino walked off the mound to more booing, two games' worth of damage against the Orioles adding up to 16 runs and 20 hits in six innings.
"I just thought we took great at-bats in the first inning," Hyde said. "We got a groundball base hit and then another groundball base hit. A little bit lucky, possibly. And then Santander with a great piece of hitting, and Frazier just gets huge hits for us. Kind of ambushed him for a homer. Great at-bats in the first."
"You can't complain when the team puts up a touchdown and the extra point," Orioles starter Dean Kremer said. "Our team, when they get going, they're pretty fun to watch."
Rutschman singled three times and walked in his second game atop the order. He's reached base six times.
"I know when I talked to him about it, I said, 'Don't change. Just because you're leading off the game, your at-bats are exactly the same and you're just hitting above Gunnar instead of hitting after him,'" Hyde said. "He works the count so well, takes his walks. ... He's doing great. I just want him to not change a thing. You're just hitting in a different spot in the order."
"That's why he's there is he walks a lot, he's always putting a professional at-bat together," Frazier said. "Getting to the plate as many times as possible should be a good thing for us, right?"
Rutschman, who extended his career-long on-base streak to 15 games, will bat wherever he's told.
"I haven't done it since my sophomore year of high school," he said. "Just trying to take the same ABs. There's a mental stigma behind, like, batting in different positions, but I'm just trying to do the same exact thing."
Kremer retired the side in order with two strikeouts in the first and lost his effectiveness.
Kremer left the bases loaded in a 32-pitch second inning and surrendered a 414-foot leadoff home run to Jake Bauers in the third. Another cutter, to Gleyber Torres, resulted in a 401-foot double off the top of the left field wall, but Kremer struck out Giancarlo Stanton, Anthony Rizzo and Isiah Kiner-Falefa on fastballs between 94.4 and 96.1 mph.
Harrison Bader and Kyle Higashioka singled in the fourth, the latter on a cutter with two outs, and Bauers pulled a two-strike fastball into right field for an RBI double that cut the lead to 7-2 and got Mike Baumann warming.
"They're a very disciplined team. They don't chase out of the zone very often," Kremer said. "Just kind of wore me down after a few innings."
The Orioles weren’t getting length from Kremer, who exited at 90 pitches after Stanton’s leadoff single in the fifth. Baumann let the inherited runner score on Bader’s sacrifice fly to leave three runs on Kremer’s line, along with seven hits, two walks and seven strikeouts.
"He didn't pitch poorly, just a lot of pitches," Hyde said. "That's a good team. They kind of wore him down a little bit. A lot of foul balls, a lot of deep counts. They don't chase. It's a typical American League East lineup. They don't chase balls off the plate, so you've got to beat them in the strike zone. And when you don't have your A stuff, sometimes your pitch count raises up."
Baumann was credited with the win, improving to 8-0 and tying Grant Jackson’s club relief record for most victories without a loss, set back in 1973. He's the seventh Orioles pitcher to begin a season 8-0 and the first since Jimmy Key in 1997.
Shintaro Fujinami tossed two scoreless innings with four strikeouts. He hasn’t allowed a run in his last three appearances, totaling 4 2/3 innings, with just one hit and seven strikeouts.
Danny Coulombe struck out three batters in the eighth while Yennier Cano warmed for the second of three times. Joey Krehbiel also warmed before the ninth, but Cano was given the last three outs in his 46th appearance.
The Orioles struck out a team-record 18 batters in a nine-inning game, including three by Cano. Rizzo accounted for five.
Catcher James McCann was drilled on the left hand by a Ron Marinaccio fastball in the fifth and stayed in the game, stealing his second base of the season. Jordan Westburg was removed before the top of the sixth, with Frazier switching from left field to second base, Austin Hays shifting to left field and Ryan McKenna entering in center.
Hyde was as aggressive as McCann on the steal. The Kremer hook, the defensive changes, the bullpen action.
"It's mainly because our starter went four, so I have five innings to fill, and they're a really right-handed dominant team," Hyde said.
"I would love to not use Cano, but then my only other option was Krehbiel, who threw 20 pitches two days ago. And they have Torres, Stanton and Rizzo coming up. I definitely don't want to pitch Cano in a six-run game, but for me that was kind of the option at that point, just from where we were."
The end result was a 64th win, in front of a national audience and another big crowd. Next are four games in Toronto, with the possibility of a trade or two impacting the roster.
"I love the way our guys play," Rutschman said. "I think we're really talented and we play together, so I'm excited to see what we can do."
* Triple-A Norfolk’s Heston Kjerstad had three hits today, including a double and his seventh home run. Joey Ortiz hit his eighth, a three-run shot.
Coby Mayo produced his first triple with the Tides.
Double-A Bowie’s Carlos Tavera allowed one earned run (two total) with five strikeouts in 4 1/3 innings.
Donta’ Williams singled and hit a two-run homer. Greg Cullen had two hits and two RBIs. Anthony Servideo singled, doubled, and drove in a run.
Dylan Beavers had two hits and walked twice for High-A Aberdeen. Luis Valdez also had two hits, including a triple.
Reliever Cooper Chandler worked six innings and allowed one earned run (three total) with no walks or strikeouts.
Luis De León started for Single-A Delmarva and worked only one inning. He allowed a hit and walked a batter. Raúl Rangel allowed one run in four innings.
Trendon Craig and Erison Placencia both had two hits.