Twenty-six pitches in the first inning, 44 through the second and 66 though the third. The Indians already had collected four hits and three walks, and Ramírez hit a batter and threw two wild pitches.
Ramírez faced 17 batters and eight of them reached base, but he surrendered only two runs on a couple of two-out hits. It boggled the mind.
The dam was bound to burst, and it happened in the fourth. Three straight hits to open the inning, a bases-loaded walk and call to the bullpen, a grand slam and an 8-0 victory for the Indians at Progressive Field.
The Orioles head to Toronto tonight with a 37-87 record, 50 games below .500 again, and are 16-47 on the road.
Ramírez was charged with seven runs and seven hits in three-plus innings to raise his ERA from 5.40 to 6.49. Sean Gilmartin inherited a bases-loaded, no-out mess in the fourth, struck out Yonder Alonso and served up a grand slam to Melky Cabrera that inflated the lead to 8-0.
The Indians have hit nine grand slams this season. The Orioles have surrendered the same number, three short of the club record set in 2006. They also allowed nine in 2000.
The record for most grand slams allowed is 14 by the 1996 Tigers. The 2006 Orioles, 2000 Expos and 2010 Mets are tied for second with 12.
Manager Buck Showalter leaned on the end of the dugout railing for the first four innings. He turned and headed down the steps after Cabrera’s slam, the steam coming out of his ears spinning him in the other direction.
Ramírez walked Yandy Díaz with the bases loaded and no outs in the fourth and Showalter was headed toward the mound before the Indians’ designated hitter was halfway up the line. The inning began with Erik Gonzalez reaching on an infield hit because Ramírez was late covering first base as Chris Davis made a diving stop, and it got worse from there.
Michael Brantley had an RBI double and José Ramírez was issued an intentional walk on a 3-0 count to load the bases.
Eleven batters came to the plate, with Gilmartin surrendering the slam and a double and also walking a batter. Yefry Ramírez threw 84 pitches in his ninth major league start.
Indians starter Mike Clevinger tossed a two-hit shutout on April 21 at Camden Yards, but the Orioles matched that total in the first inning on Cedric Mullins’ leadoff double and Jonathan Villar’s single. Davis opened the second with a double and Craig Gentry reached on an infield hit with one out. Mullins drew a leadoff walk in the third. Davis had a leadoff single in the fourth. Mullins reached on an infield hit with one out in the fifth. Mark Trumbo singled with one out in the sixth.
There was no shortage of baserunners, only runs, and the Orioles were shut out for the 11th time this season.
Caleb Joseph was hit by a pitch leading off the seventh. Trey Mancini led off the eighth with a single. Joey Rickard came off the bench and opened the ninth with a single. The leadoff hitter reached in six innings. Still nothing.
Díaz had a two-out RBI double in the first as the Indians squared up Ramírez, but settled for one run. Mancini ran down Brantley’s drive to left, skidding on the warning track, and second baseman Jace Peterson made a leaping grab to rob Cabrera and end the inning.
The Orioles have been outscored 100-56 in the first inning this season.
Greg Allen had a two-out RBI single in the second after Jason Kipnis led off with a single and took second on Gentry’s error. Ramírez walked two batters in the third and fell apart in the fourth.
Ramírez hasn’t recorded an out in the sixth inning in any start. The Orioles couldn’t get him through the fourth today.
Ohio native Tanner Scott struck out the side in the sixth.