Phillips excited for first start and O's alums back for 30th anniversary celebration

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He may hitting just .145 in 76 games this year, but new Orioles outfielder Brett Phillips has good numbers in his career batting at Camden Yards. And tonight he’ll take the field for his first start as an Oriole. And it probably won’t surprise you to know that the ultra-enthusiastic Phillips could not be much more excited.

“Coming into a clubhouse that has a lot of energy as it is, I’m a guy who brings the energy and feeds off of energy. Just being here the other day for the first time I’ve recognized that we’ve got a group that is hungry here and that’s willing to get better and wants to win. We have a good opportunity here and I’m trying to come in here and do what I can to help this team win. And whatever opportunity that Brandon Hyde has for me, I’m going to be ready,” Phillips said earlier in the Baltimore clubhouse.

He has watched the Orioles from across the field with Tampa Bay and sees a very different team in 2022. One that begins tonight at 54-51 and two games out of the final American League playoff spot.

“Being on the Rays, we won 18 of 19 against Baltimore last year and looking from the other dugout (this season) it’s night and day different,” he said. “How they are preparing, their approach, the information that they are getting. I told the hitting coaches, I’m a sponge. I wanna bring the energy, contribute as much as I can and I want to win the World Series. You have to belive that first then actually do it.”

Phillips is a career .259/.355/.537 (14-for-54) hitter in 22 games at Oriole Park, with eight extra-base hits (4-2B, 3B, 3 HR), eight runs scored, 11 RBIs, eight walks, and four stolen bases. His .892 career OPS at Oriole Park is his highest at any ballpark where he has played at least 10 games. And his batting line is .280/.308/.400 (7-for-25) with three doubles, two runs scored, one RBI, one walk, and two stolen bases in eight games at Camden Yards this season.

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Orioles lineup vs. Pirates

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Austin Hays remains out of the Orioles’ lineup tonight with soreness in his left side.

Brett Phillips makes his first Orioles start, playing left field for the series opener against the Pirates.

Terrin Vavra is the designated hitter tonight.

Ryan Mountcastle is looking for his first home run since July 3. He’s 5-for-46 in his last 12 games.

Dean Kremer has allowed 13 runs and 23 hits in his last three starts over 13 2/3 innings.

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Brett Phillips: "I really am excited to be a Baltimore Oriole"

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ARLINGTON, Texas - Brett Phillips is a bundle of energy. As if there’s a switch that’s jammed in the “on” position.

Judging by his reputation, he’s probably the one who jammed it.

The huge smile never left Phillips’ face yesterday as he greeted his new Orioles teammates, club employees and the media. He embraced reliever Joey Krehbiel, who attended the same high school in Seminole, Fla. He expressed gratitude to manager Brandon Hyde for the opportunity and vowed to do anything the club needed from him.

Moving 100 mph even from a seated position. It’s quite a show. But it’s also genuine.

What exactly is the source of this energy?

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Looking ahead for Orioles with trade deadline behind them

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Is the wild card race really all that’s left for the Orioles, who executed moves over the past two days that on paper reduced their chances of making the playoffs for the first time since 2016?

Trey Mancini and Jorge López are gone. That won’t help. And it shouldn’t have come as a surprise to anyone.

The Orioles were sellers, unless acquiring outfielder Brett Phillips from the Rays for cash also made them buyers. The slim distance between them and the last wild card spot didn’t hold much weight.

They weren’t going to stand pat. To do so would have required 29 other teams to ignore them.  

The postseason odds still didn’t favor them. They weren’t tearing up the rebuild blueprint. Executive vice president/general manager Mike Elias wasn’t letting the GPS recalculate. These deals would be made with no regard for the standings.

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Orioles acquire Brett Phillips as last move at deadline

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ARLINGTON, Texas – The Orioles had one more trade to make this afternoon, and it didn’t impact their roster beyond having to create an open spot.

Outfielder Brett Phillips, 28, was acquired from the Rays shortly before the deadline for cash considerations. The 40-man roster is full.

Phillips was designated for assignment Monday after the Rays acquired outfielder José Siri from the Astros as part of the three-team trade involving Orioles first baseman/outfielder Trey Mancini.

No other moves were made before 6 p.m. The Orioles kept starter Jordan Lyles, outfielders Anthony Santander and Cedric Mullins, second baseman Rougned Odor and the rest of their relievers.

Phillips slashed .147/.225/.250 (27-for-184) this season with four doubles, five home runs, 14 RBIs, 21 runs scored and seven stolen bases in 75 games. The Orioles are most interested in his defense. He ranked in the top two percent in the majors with 10 Outs Above Average, according to Statcast.

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