The sweep is complete: O’s lose series finale at Oakland

OAKLAND - They lost their best player in the first inning and didn’t get a hit until the sixth. And while they made this game close after initially falling behind, in the end, it was another loss for the Orioles.

The Athletics beat the Orioles 8-3 to complete a three-game home sweep. At 21-53, the Orioles now have an eight-game losing streak, which is a season high.

Baltimore has lost 12 of 14 and 16 of the last 20. The Orioles finish the season series going 1-6 against Oakland, allowing 62 runs. The Orioles were swept for the seventh time.

All-Star candidate Trey Mancini left the game after being hit by a pitch in the top of the first. He suffered a left elbow contusion. There was more pain later in the game for the Orioles as Oakland pulled away to complete the sweep by a combined 27-7 score.

Yacabonis-Day-Gray-sidebar.jpgThe Orioles’ opener strategy got them off to a good pitching start today after they gave up 16 runs last night. Right-hander Jimmy Yacabonis got the start as the opener and threw two scoreless innings on 31 pitches. He pitched out of a first-and-third, one-out jam in the opening inning when he got Khris Davis to ground into a double play.

Lefty Josh Rogers, as expected, replaced him, starting the Oakland third. Rogers sailed through two scoreless on 27 pitches before the A’s got to him in the fifth to break the 0-0 tie.

With two outs and none on, Stephen Piscotty doubled to left and Chad Pinder was hit by a pitch. Then Rogers got ahead of No. 9 hitter Josh Phegley 0-2 before he hung a slider, and that didn’t work. Phegley hit a three-run homer to left for a 3-0 lead. No. 9 just got out at 346 feet.

That was Oakland’s 21st homer in seven games against the Orioles in 2019. That ties the A’s record for most homers in a year against the O’s, set when they hit 21 in 12 games in 1999.

But the Orioles would get a couple of those runs back, even though they had been no-hit through five innings by A’s right-hander Chris Bassitt.

Jonathan Villar’s clean single to left in the sixth with one out ended the no-hit bid. With two outs, Chris Davis and Chance Sisco drew walks to load the bases. Then Renato Núñez hit a grounder up the middle that went for an infield hit and RBI, and it was 3-1. The A’s went to lefty Ryan Buchter to face Rio Ruiz, but Buchter walked him and the O’s were down just 3-2. The threat ended, though, when Yusmeiro Petit got Hanser Alberto to chase a curveball for a strikeout.

The A’s went ahead 4-2 off Shawn Armstrong in the sixth. Back-to-back two-out doubles by Mark Canha and Stephen Piscotty produced a two-run lead.

The Orioles got closer again. Stevie Wilkerson singled with one out, went to third on Villar’s single and scored on Anthony Santander’s sac fly to right. It was a 4-3 game.

Then Oakland pulled away for good. The A’s scored four in the seventh off Armstrong and Richard Bleier. An 8-3 lead would be safe as Oakland improved to 39-36. The A’s had lost seven of their last eight home games before sweeping the Orioles.

The O’s offense produced just seven runs and 13 hits in the series. The Orioles have scored three runs or fewer in 14 of the last 20 games.

So the road trip starts with three losses at the Oakland Coliseum, and it’s on to Seattle for the Orioles.

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