He did it again: John Means pitches the Orioles past the Angels

Orioles lefty John Means had to navigate through some traffic on the bases early on today. He did. Then he needed to pitch efficiently later in the game to get through six innings. He did.

He gave up a solo homer to Mike Trout - who hit two here this weekend - but Means was solid once again for the Orioles, who beat the Los Angeles Angels 4-1 at Oriole Park. They improve to 14-26 and avoided a three-game sweep. The Orioles today snapped their fifth four-game losing streak of the year. They’ve never gotten to five straight.

Over six innings, Means gave up four hits and one run with three walks and four strikeouts. He is now 5-3 with an ERA of 2.33 after a 110-pitch outing. He’s allowed one earned run or less in five of his six starts and has given up two runs and seven hits in 13 innings his past two games.

Orioles starting pitchers have thrown six innings or more four times the past seven games. They have four quality starts in that stretch and eight for the season.

John-Means-Delivers-Mothers-Day-Cap-White-Sidebar.jpgMeans pitched around early trouble as the Angels put two on in the first two innings via two walks and two errors. But Means still put up zeroes, although he threw 29 pitches in the first and 18 in the second.

He was at 84 pitches through four and, at that point, a six-inning outing seemed unlikely. But he got that done too. He got a double play in a nine-pitch fifth and fanned two on sliders during a 17-pitch sixth.

It was solid and it was impressive again by the Orioles’ 11th rounder out of West Virginia Univeristy in 2014.

The Orioles backed him with the longball. They matched a season-high hitting four today. That was after getting three the last three games. They also hit four home runs on April 23 at Oriole Park versus the White Sox.

Chris Davis, batting fourth for the first time in 2019, led off the second with his fifth on a 2-2 fastball and one out later, Stevie Wilkerson homered to center. He got a high fastball for his third. Dwight Smith Jr. added a two-run shot in the third, his eighth. Pedro Severino lined one into the left field seats in the sixth. That solo shot was his fifth and made it 5-1. All the runs came via homers.

Losing pitcher Griffin Canning gave up three of the homers and four runs over 4 2/3. The Angels, who had won 10 of 14 games coming in, fall to 19-21.

The Orioles have been swept in three-game series by the Yankees and Minnesota twice. But this win denied the Angles a sweep at Camden Yards. Baltimore went 0-for-8 with runners in scoring position and left 10 on base, but Means the homers were enough to win.

Today’s game began after a rain delay of two hours, 42 minutes at the start. Now the Orioles hit the road for a two-city seven-game trip against the Yankees in New York and Indians in Cleveland beginning Monday night.

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