When a team scores a bunch of runs - and the Orioles had 18 in Sunday’s win over Cleveland - the offense sometimes gets shut down in the next game.
This was not one of those nights.
The Orioles followed Sunday’s 18-5 win - as they posted their most runs since Aug. 16, 2015 - with another big number in a win over the first-place New York Mets.
The Orioles improved to 5-1 in June and to 22-38 overall, beating the Mets 10-3 to start a two-game series at Oriole Park. The O’s went 25-35 last year in the shortened 60-game season and reached the 60-game mark for this season tonight.
Third baseman Maikel Franco tonight became the sixth player to hit a second-deck homer at Camden Yards when he drove a three-run shot down the left-field line. That gave the O’s an 8-2 lead in the fifth inning. Franco connected off Robert Gsellman and drilled an 0-1 two-seamer 423 feet with an exit velocity of 111 mph. It was homer No. 7.
Here are the previous second-deck homers at Oriole Park:
* California’s Rex Hudler, on June 11, 1995 against Jamie Moyer.
* O’s Mark Reynolds on Aug. 7, 2011 against Toronto’s Ricky Romero.
* O’s Manny Machado on June 2, 2017 against Boston’s Rick Porcello.
* Cleveland’s Edwin Encarnación, on June 20, 2017 versus Chris Tillman.
* New York Mets’ Pete Alonso on Sept. 2, 2020 against John Means.
The Orioles actually fell behind 2-0 in the first tonight when Alonso hit a two-run shot off Bruce Zimmermann. He added a second homer in the ninth.
But Zimmermann would settle down and throw four scoreless innings after the first. He improved to 4-3 with an ERA of 4.83 allowing two hits and runs over five on 90 pitches.
Over his last three starts, Zimmermann has an ERA of 2.94, allowing five earned runs over 15 1/3 innings with five walks to 20 strikeouts.
The Orioles had 21 hits and went 11-for-18 with runners in scoring position on Sunday. Through the fifth inning tonight, they held an 8-2 lead. They had scored 26 runs in 13 innings to that point, counting Sunday and tonight.
In those 13 innings they went 33-for-69 (.478) at-bat with nine doubles and three homers. And in that span they went 17-for-31 (.548) with RISP. So, pretty crazy numbers to say the least.
Center fielder Cedric Mullins went 2-for-4 with two doubles tonight. Over his past three games, he is 10-for-13 with six extra-base hits. He is 17-for-32 his past eight games with four doubles, two triples, three homers and four RBIs.
On the farm tonight, Grayson Rodriguez threw five scoreless in Double-A Bowie’s game. He has an ERA of 0.90 after his first two Bowie starts and 1.35 through his first seven starts of this season. He’s fanned 54 in 33 1/3 innings.
The O’s are about to go 5-0 again on the farm and in the big leagues tonight with Aberdeen winning its game by seven runs in the ninth. The other minor league teams have already won tonight.