Heasley surrenders walk-off single in 11th inning in Orioles' wild 5-4 loss (updated)

PITTSBURGH – Maybe it was the sunshine and dry conditions that flustered the Orioles. They couldn’t get Pirates starter Bailey Falter to live up to his name. They needed him to leave. Nothing good would happen until he was back inside the clubhouse.

The game still ended poorly, but at least there were flickers of hope. Too bad they'd get burned in extra innings.

Danny Coulombe escaped a bases-loaded, no-out jam in the 10th, but the Orioles failed to score in the top of the 11th and Oneil Cruz singled off Jonathan Heasley to plate Henry Davis for a 5-4 walk-off win at PNC Park.

Cedric Mullins made a sensational diving catch to rob Ke'Bryan Hayes, but Cruz lined a first-pitch sweeper into right field and the Pirates stormed the field.

The Orioles went 0-for-14 with runners in scoring position. They scored on a ground ball, two fly balls and a fielder's choice. But they still had a chance.

Adley Rutschman began the 11th at second base, and a strikeout, fly out and grounder kept him there. The end was near.

"It's always tough on the road in extra innings, especially if we don't score there," said manager Brandon Hyde. "It's a tough situation. You're trying to get more than one. If you don't score any, you're putting yourself in a really tough spot."

The first baserunner against Falter came with one out in the fourth inning on Rutschman’s walk. Second baseman Alika Williams booted a potential double play ball from Ryan Mountcastle, but still no hits. He kept jamming right-handed hitters, locating the ball inside despite lacking overpowering stuff.

The Orioles would have to wait until the Pirates misplayed their second fly ball in two days, letting Jorge Mateo’s popup in shallow center drop among three fielders for a gift leadoff double in the sixth.

A favorable matchup on paper didn’t materialize for the Orioles, who saw Tyler Wells allow three runs in 5 1/3 innings and the offense appear flummoxed, but they pounced on the bullpen. It almost worked, too.

"Their starter, we did nothing against, we didn't get many hits, so we didn't make it easy on ourselves," Hyde said.

"Unfortunately, just didn't get enough runs there late in the game."

Coulombe did his best to reverse the outcome, working a miracle after being put in an impossible situation.

Mike Baumann, trying for his first major league save, walked Edward Olivares with the bases loaded and no outs in the 10th to tie the game, but Coulombe retired Rowdy Tellez on a popup, got Jared Triolo to ground to third baseman Ramón Urías, who threw home for the out, and fanned Joey Bart.

"It's one pitch at a time," Coulombe said. "If you're thinking about the big picture, it's really hard. It's one pitch at a time, execute one pitch at a time, and that's how you get out of something like that."

"He's just got so much grit and he's so competitive," Hyde said. "He's good against lefties and righties. I'm trying not to pitch him today, honestly, and he ends up getting in that situation."

Coulombe leaped off the mound and spun toward the dugout after striking out Bart.

"I got pretty excited about that one," he said. "Bases loaded, no outs, obviously not ideal. But you just want to pick up your teammate and I was really excited I could do that for Mike."

The moment felt like it would launch the Orioles to a win.

"You always feel like we can pull it out," Wells said. "Those guys are out there grinding, battling. Danny came in and did a fantastic job. It's just a cruel world of baseball. It builds you up, tears you down. Losses like this today are ultimately, I guess the best way of putting it is, a good loss. We battled and we battled hard and we came back, and I'm very proud of the guys. I think they did a great job today."

Automatic runner Tony Kemp, who ended the game in left field, moved up in the 10th on a ground ball and scored on Rutschman's sacrifice fly.

David Bednar tried to notch his second save in the ninth, but Jordan Westburg and pinch-hitter Ryan O'Hearn singled with one out and moved up on a wild pitch, and Tellez was late with his throw to the plate on Mullins' fielder's choice grounder. Cruz cut down O'Hearn at the plate on pinch-hitter Colton Cowser's grounder and Kemp bounced out.

Craig Kimbrel sent the game past regulation by retiring the side in order.

The Orioles (5-3) still have a chance Sunday to win three straight series against the Pirates for the first time in franchise history, and claim their first three series of the season for only the third time this century - also doing it in 2009 and 2016. They allowed more than four runs for the first time this season.

Dillon Tate stranded two runners after replacing Wells, who surrendered seven hits among his 87 pitches and has a 4.76 ERA in two starts.

"I'm going to look at the positives. Kept my team in it," Wells said.

"I think it was really one bad pitch that really hurt me today, ultimately, but it was a grind, it was definitely a grind. I'm pleased with the way I was able to work out of a lot of those jams. I'm not very happy that I was in the jams, but overall stuff felt good, locations were a little bit spotty. But overall I think I could have gone out there and thrown six shutout with the way that I felt. But ultimately, that's never how it works. That's the funny thing about baseball."

Falter was removed after six innings and only 78 pitches with the Pirates ahead 3-0. Anthony Santander drew a leadoff walk against Ryder Ryan in the seventh and Westburg doubled down the left field line. Santander scored on Austin Hays’ grounder, and Mullins’ sacrifice flew drew the Orioles within one run.

Aroldis Chapman walked Gunnar Henderson on four pitches with one out in the eighth and fell behind 3-0 to Rutschman before retiring him on a fly ball with the count full. Henderson stole second and third without a throw, but Ryan Mountcastle struck out on a 100.6 mph sinker.

For the fifth time in eight games, the Orioles fell behind 3-0 and tried to claw back from the early deficit. They've succeeded twice.

Olivares doubled with one out in the second inning and scored on Tellez’s single. Wells struck out Triolo, but Bart homered to left field in his first plate appearance with the Pirates after they got him in Tuesday’s trade with the Giants.

Bart drove a cutter 410 feet, with Hays giving it a courtesy chase. Wells had surrendered his second home run this season in eight innings after allowing 25 in 118 2/3 in 2023.

Cruz led off the third with a single and stolen base and Bryan Reynolds walked. Wells struck out the next two batters on a fastball and curve, and retired Olivares on a foul popup to catcher James McCann.

Tellez led off the fourth with a single and went to third base with one out on Bart’s double to the left field fence. Williams popped up, pitching coach Drew French visited the mound, Wells challenged Cruz with first base open, and a ground ball ended the rally.

"I think he's just had a couple bad innings," Hyde said. "Bart got him a couple times. But I thought he settled in. He only gave up three runs getting into the sixth inning. That should be enough for our offense. It should work, because we're going to be a pretty good offensive club. Just haven't been the last two times he's pitched."

The Pirates were 1-for-6 with runners in scoring position and stranded four through the fourth.

Meanwhile, the Orioles couldn’t do much beyond lazy fly balls and popups against Falter, who allowed six runs in four innings against the Marlins in his first start and owned a 4.94 ERA in 61 major league games.

Center fielder Jack Suwinski charged Mateo’s fly ball and pulled up as Williams raced back for it. Mateo kept running hard and beat the throw to second base. The expected batting average was .020. Mateo had raised his own to .333.

Hisashi Iwakuma threw the last no-hitter against the Orioles, on Aug. 12, 2015 in Seattle, but there have been a few close calls. This one didn’t increase the heart rate compared to others, and we’ll include the Rays’ Drew Rasmussen being perfect through the eighth on Aug. 14, 2022 at Tropicana Field before Mateo’s line drive double leading off the ninth.

The last Pirates no-hitter was a combined effort from Francisco Cordova and Ricardo Rincon on July 12, 1997 against the Astros. The last solo effort was from John Candelaria on Aug. 9, 1976 against the Dodgers.

The Reds’ Homer Bailey has thrown the only PNC Park no-hitter, on Sept. 28, 2012.

The Orioles’ bullpen began today with a 2.38 ERA that ranked seventh in the majors. Keegan Akin followed Tate by retiring the side in order in the seventh, striking out two, but Suwiski led off the eighth by reaching on a fly ball to shallow left that Hays appeared to lose momentarily in the sun.

Jacob Webb replaced Akin and Santander made a diving catch near the right field line to rob Olivares. Tellez singled to intensify the jam, but Webb wiggled out of it with back-to-back strikeouts.

Coulombe pulled off the ultimate escape, but the Orioles couldn't pull out a win.

"You think the momentum would be on our side," he said. "That's a really good team over there and it just didn't go our way."

* John Means allowed one run and one hit in three innings for Triple-A Norfolk in his second rehab start. He walked one batter, struck out four and threw 50 pitches, 28 for strikes.

Connor Norby, Peyton Burdick and Ryan McKenna have homered.

Cano's hot start, Santander's milestone game, Norf...
O's game blog: A chance for a series win at Pittsb...

By accepting you will be accessing a service provided by a third-party external to https://www.masnsports.com/