He smashed a 411-foot homer in the first inning, drove in a career-high five runs and got robbed of a second homer last night. But when asked today which meant more to him, catching a shutout or having the big night at the plate, Chance Sisco quickly answered.
“The shutout,” he said. “I believe it was the first shutout I’ve caught in the big leagues and that was definitely fun. Every inning Cuz (coach Tim Cossins, catching instructor) just kept reminding me to keep the foot on the gas pedal and keep throwing up those zeroes. That definitely meant a lot last night.”
Sisco and the pitchers stayed focus on the task last night, even with a big early 8-0 lead. The zeroes kept coming in a four-pitcher six-hitter with two walks and eight strikeouts. And they did it against a Cleveland team that had the best AL record in June at 16-7.
Sisco got some major props from skipper Brandon Hyde today during his pregame media session.
“As excited as I was with how he swung the bat, I was really pleased with what he did behind the plate,” Hyde said. “I thought he worked great with John Means. They both had a great tempo going throughout the game. He got those relievers through their innings, put zeroes up, put some good fingers down and just had a really nice relationship going with all the guys that pitched last night. Blocked really well.
“So he’s making a lot of strides. I thought last night, not just because he caught a shutout, but how he commanded everything. Thought he had really good rhythm and tempo. He took control back there last night. It was awesome to watch.”
For what it’s worth, Sisco has the lowest catcher ERA on the Orioles in 2019. But he also has caught the fewest innings.
So what was the key for Sisco working with four different pitchers Friday night?
“Honestly, just trying to have shutdown innings. We score a run, we were trying to shut them down the next inning. Have quick innings. Think we did a good job of that last night.”
Sisco feels he continues to make progress calling pitches and last night was the latest example.
“Good, yeah, for sure. Just trying to get a feel for what the pitcher has that night. And the way the hitters are reacting to their pitches kind of tells me a lot,” he said.
The Orioles host Cleveland again today at 4:05 p.m. A win would give the Orioles their first two-game win streak since May 4-6 and their first series win since April 22-24.