BALTIMORE—David Hess finished off his 2018 season with a flourish, allowing just one run on three hits in seven innings.
The seven innings equaled a career high, but the Orioles could muster little support and lost, 2-1, to the Houston Astros on Friday.
Hess gave up a home run to right by Josh Reddick with two outs in the sixth, tying the score at 1.
He walked two and struck out four. Hess ends the season with just one win in last 18 starts, but holding the American League West champs down will give him a better chance to stay in the starting rotation to begin 2019.
“It’s been an up-and-down season in a lot of aspects, and so I really wanted to go out there tonight and just kind of put a good taste in everybody’s mouth going into the offseason and into next season and kind of show everybody what we’re capable of,” Hess said.
Hess was the first starter to complete seven innings since Andrew Cashner on Aug. 25.
He ends the season 3-10 with a 4.88 ERA.
Tanner Scott walked two and allowed two singles in the eighth, and took the loss.
“I just wasn’t executing pitches,” Scott said. “Hess did a great job today, went seven, only gave up a run, and then I came in and wasn’t able to execute a pitch.”
Houston center fielder Jake Marisnick ended the game by making a brilliant, diving catch on Renato Nunez’s liner. Pinch-runner John Andreoli was on second and would have scored had the ball dropped in.
The Orioles are 46-113 with three games left.
Davis won’t play in final games
Chris Davis’ season is over. Davis, whose .168 average is the lowest in history for any hitter qualifying for the batting title, ends his year without a hit in his last 21 at-bats, and 1-for-37 with 20 strikeouts.
Davis has 192 strikeouts and struck out seven times in his last two games on Sept. 21 and 22 at Yankee Stadium. Showalter was asked before last Sunday’s game if he would prevent Davis from reaching 200 strikeouts for the third time in his career, and indicated that he would play again, and reiterated that in Boston.
The power numbers were never there this year for Davis, who led the majors in home runs in 2013 and 2015. He had 16 home runs and 49 RBIs. His last home run came on Aug. 24, and his final RBI was on Sept. 4, his only run driven in this month.
Jones plays and gets big hand
Adam Jones, who was named Most Valuable Oriole earlier in the day, received warm ovations from many of the 18,434 on hand.
The largest ovation came before his last at-bat in the ninth before he flied to deep left. There was prolonged applause after he made the out and trotted back to the dugout.
“It’s September 28th. I’m not oblivious to the fact that the season ends at the end of September,” Jones said “Forty-eight hours here more. Three more games in 48 hours, and we’ll evaluate after that.”
Jones poked a double over first base in the first inning to score Jonathan Villar with the Orioles’ only run. He also struck out in the fourth and grounded to short in the sixth.
“It doesn’t surprise me,” Showalter said of the ovation.
“Our fans know what Adam has meant. He’s been a constant through thick and thin, knowing what you can expect out of Adam. That’s what managers, coaches, general managers, owners, fans, they’re all looking for someone they can count on.
“You know what you’re going to get when they get through playing that song. He’s a very dependable guy, just like a lot of people we’ve had here. But not necessarily the longevity he’s had. To be able to do it over that period of time, I think people really appreciate it and want to thank him for it.”
Astros’ pitching feat
Gerrit Cole worked six innings, giving him 200 1/3 innings this season. He joins teammates Justin Verlander (208 innings) and Dallas Keuchel (201 2/3). The Astros are the only major league team this season with three pitchers who threw more than 200 innings.
Verlander will start the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader against Dylan Bundy. Keuchel pitches the second.