Orioles give up their 100th homer; Hess has another bad start; Hyde says team lacks depth - BaltimoreBaseball.com

Rich Dubroff

Orioles give up their 100th homer; Hess has another bad start; Hyde says team lacks depth

BALTIMORE—For the first several weeks of the season, Brandon Hyde tried to put an optimistic front on the losing his new team was going through.

Now that the Orioles are nearly a third of the way through what has become a most challenging season for a first-year manager, Hyde is becoming more blunt.

Eager for his first major league managerial job, Hyde knew what he was getting into and that the years of winning as a coach with the Chicago Cubs were behind him. But the enormity of the task has become even more clear.

Shortly after he watched David Hess allow three more home runs and nine runs in total in an 11-4 Orioles loss to the New York Yankees on Tuesday night, Hyde acknowledged what everyone knows.

His team doesn’t have good enough players to compete with a team like the Yankees.

He left Hess in the game to absorb the nine runs in five innings because he didn’t want to exhaust his bullpen. The Orioles have allowed 10 or more runs in three straight games for the first time since June 10-12, 2017. Two of those games were against the Yankees, too.

“You’ve got to be able to execute up here and you’ve got to be able to execute against a major league lineup that can hurt you when you make mistakes,” Hyde said.

Gary Sanchez hit a three-run home run in the first, his 14th, and Clint Frazier had a two-run homer in the third and a three-run blast in the fifth.

The third home run was the 100th Oriole pitchers have given up in 48 games, which is the fewest games in which any team has reached the century mark and puts the Orioles on a pace to allow 338. That would shatter the major league record set by the Cincinnati Reds in 2016 when they gave up 258.


Hess has allowed 17 home runs in 45 1/3 innings. On May 15, in the first game of a doubleheader, Hess allowed five runs, four on homers. He hasn’t won in his last eight starts, and his record is 1-6 with a 6.75 ERA.

“The work that’s being put in there are things that are being addressed,” Hess said. “It just hasn’t shown so far out on the field and so from the lens I see it through, I really try to focus on the things that are positive and kind of take away a couple things to move forward with and then address the things between starts that we want to work on.”

Hyde was honest in his assessment.

“We’re facing good teams, but you’ve got to pitch here,” Hyde said. “You have to stay off the barrel, and you’ve got to be able to locate. And if you don’t, in a hitter’s ballpark against guys that mash, you’re going to give up 100 homers 40-something games into it.”

The Orioles’ loss was their fourth straight, their sixth four-game losing streak. Their record is 15-33.

“It is very draining just because there’s a clubhouse of guys in here that I care about a ton,” Hess said. “To have that feeling of not going out and getting the job done for them, just as much as anything else, that really does wear you down.

“But really that’s also the thing that keeps you going, knowing the culture that’s here, the guys that are here care about one another and they want to see me get through it just as much as I do. Really, without them, I think this would be a lot more difficult than it has been.”

Before starting pitcher Alex Cobb was put on the 10-day injured list on April 27, Hyde planned to move Hess to the bullpen. Cobb’s injured back has kept Hess in the rotation.

“We just don’t have the numbers, we don’t have the depth,” Hyde said. “I don’t like seeing guys get beat up.”

Hyde doesn’t have many alternatives. On Sunday, he tried Yefry Ramirez, but after he gave up six runs, five earned, in 3 1/3 innings against Cleveland in a 10-0 loss, the Orioles sent Ramirez back to Triple-A Norfolk.

The Tides’ best starter is probably left-hander Keegan Akin, who is 2-1 with a 3.60 ERA in eight starts in his first go-around at Triple-A. Another left-hander who’s already been with the Orioles is Josh Rogers, but his ERA with the Tides is  6.57 in seven starts.

Luis Ortiz, who was up for a day last month, but didn’t pitch, came to the Orioles from Milwaukee in the Jonathan Schoop trade. He has a 6.98 ERA in seven starts.

The Orioles could always try journeyman left-hander Sean Gilmartin, who spent the last two months of the season with the Orioles. He has a 2.49 ERA, but despite some major league starting experience, he isn’t stretched out and would be another bullpen arm.

If the Orioles are reluctant to expose Akin to the major leagues just yet, they might have to stick with Hess.

“It’s what we’ve got right now,” Hyde said. “It’s not from lack of effort or lack of competitiveness. I don’t like seeing guys get beat up and giving up homers, but they’re all getting the opportunity to bounce back from tough starts or our hitters from tough games offensively. But, yeah, we’re lacking depth.”

Domingo German, who’s now 9-1, won for the third time this season against the Orioles. German, who leads the majors in wins, was removed after five innings with the score 9-3.

Stevie Wilkerson’s three-run home run, his fifth, were the only runs given up by German.

David Hale pitched the final four innings for his first major league save.

Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB





  1. Orial

    May 22, 2019 at 7:56 am

    Rich this article kind of says it all in a proper subdued way. Hyde has been trying to keep his chin up and defensive of his players but reality has even struck him(probably has from the beginning). I’m sure that Hyde is as shocked as we are at how inept this pitching developement is/was. For that the previous regime should be ashamed. As hard as it is we have to keep looking forward, watch the talents at AA and A ball,hope the hitting core at Norfolk finally “gets” it,and pray that Elias aces the June 3 draft and International Draft(July). Agree I’m very leery that Akin is the answer(Hess 2?)

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      May 22, 2019 at 8:04 am

      “Previous regime”? Last I checked, ownership hasn’t changed. Duquette took lemons and made lemonade.

      • Orial

        May 22, 2019 at 10:40 am

        I’m basically refering to the minor leagues and the lack of developement. Yes ownership did have hands tied to a degree but a GM and his assts should have at least been able to build a semi productive farm system. I do give give Dan credit for his ability to scour the trash heap. But a baron farm system—sorry no way.

  2. Boog Robinson Robinson

    May 22, 2019 at 8:00 am

    “Hyde says team lacks depth” …. Bwaaahahaaaahahahah! Really? Takes a keen baseball eye to come to that conclusion, doesn’t it boys?

    I believe I mentioned these names a week or 2 ago …James Shields, Dallas Keuchel, Bartolo Colon and yes … Ubaldo. They along with others are available. If we’re truly not trying to lose games, why doesn’t somebody at least look into what it would take to land 1 or 2 of these guys?
    Last I checked, the Orioles were still technically considered a major league team, but frankly, be it ownership or new management’s fault, I can’t help feeling that we’ve become as bush league, and bush league gets. Maybe they’re not trying to lose, but it’s more than apparent that they’re certainly not trying to win.

    Tanking is beneath this franchise’s dignity. Shame on the Orioles.

    • Camden Brooks

      May 22, 2019 at 8:40 am

      My guess is they don’t believe any of those guys would be any better than what we have. I liked the Straily signing, but it hasn’t exactly worked out.

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        May 22, 2019 at 9:41 am

        I’m thinking any of those names would be better than what they have. Granted .. I’m no expert … but really, Dallas Keuchel isn’t any better? Please …. And yeah I know .. they couldn’t afford him (Keuchel), but can’t a frustrated fan dream?

    • SpinMaster

      May 22, 2019 at 8:45 am

      Boog: How do we know that some of the names you mention haven’t been contacted by the Orioles and we were turned down. I don’t know why a former major league pitcher would want to come to pitch for the O’s and in OPCY. I guess we just have to take our lumps this year and probably next and try to find some positives in this team.

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        May 22, 2019 at 9:36 am

        Well to be fair … I’m sure they didn’t call Keuchel since he’d be out of thier price range.

        But why would they want to come to OPCY to pitch for the O’s? Let’s try …… they’re currently unemployed and you don’t make 7 figures bagging groceries?

    • ClayDal

      May 22, 2019 at 9:37 am

      Dallas Kuechel is still holding out for a market value contract somewhere around 18 million a year. Orioles would like to cut payroll not add. Shields is 37, Colon is 45 ( at least) and haven’t pitched this year. Would take at least 2 months to get them into reasonable shape to pitch. Many people think the Birds should spend more money to improve the team. Unfortunately the situation we are dealing with are ; uncertain ownership, the never ending MASN dispute, declining attendance, and a hangover from a spending spree from 2014-17 trying to extend the competitive window. Even so called “pillow” contracts ( 1 year 8 million) are too pricey in the Orioles current situation

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        May 22, 2019 at 9:49 am

        So the answer is to “Just lose baby”? Why exactly do you suppose attendance declining?

        Spending spree? If signing Chris Davis was a spending spree, I guess you’re on to something.

        I guess the price of doing business as a major league franchise is simply out of reach in Bal’more. I bet somebody in Vegas would be happy to take this problem of the Angelos family’s hands.


      May 22, 2019 at 9:46 am

      Two thumbs up, Boog, for telling the truth and not drinking the Orange Kool Aid. You do not have to tank to rebuild. The Braves traded off a lot of vets for prospects but they also signed Markakis and traded for some low cost vets to be respectable. And they are now a good team. They were never pathetic like the O’s currently are.

    • ClayDal

      May 22, 2019 at 10:07 am

      According to sportscaster.com when the Orioles won the division in 2014 their payroll was 113 million. By 2017 payroll was over 175 million. Wasn’t all Chris Davis. Attendance dropped from 2.464 million in 2014 to 2.028 million in 2017. In 2016 a playoff team attendance dropped to 2.172 million. Dan Duquette said as much last year after the trades that the business model was unsustainable. Hence the Gausman salary dump.

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        May 22, 2019 at 11:11 am

        You do have a point, and yes, I guess they did add Trumbo, Ubaldo a s big name free agents, but who else? And of all their free agent signings, only Trumbo went for double digit millions. And he was a re-signing … not really like another teams player! Matter of fact MOST of the free agent contracts and additional payroll went to resigning their only players (if only of them had been ellie Cruz…..Grrrrr) and salary increases through arbitration. Successful players demand $$.

        But my point is that Chris Davis went from earning 3.3 million to 23 Million. 20 million per year difference. This alone accounts for 40% of that payroll difference. And the only reason they spent that was because of a knee jerk reaction to losing Cruz.

        Considering Davis contract, and the dearth of many incoming free agents, ceratinly no star-type players, I’d hardly call the increase in team salary a spending spree. I’d call it the price of doing business in the major leagues.

    • ClayDal

      May 22, 2019 at 10:12 am

      By the way that is spotrac.com. Darn spellcheck

    • ClayDal

      May 22, 2019 at 11:33 am

      Chris Davis made 12 million in 2015. Only a 10 million dollar raise. Some of the Orioles salaries 2017-18
      Davis 21.1 mil both years
      Jones 16.3 2017 17.3 2018
      Hardy 14 mil 2017 2 million 2018 ( buyout)
      Ubaldo 13.5 2017
      Machado 11.5 2017 16 mil 2018
      Look the bottom line is they were spending money. The results on the field and at the gate did not justify the expense. The fact that they spent nothing on international players and did a poor job in the draft and player development is why the Orioles are in the position they are in today. Mike Elias and company inherited this mess and hopefully have a plan that will work in a few years

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        May 22, 2019 at 2:13 pm

        Jones & Hardy’s salaries both predated 2015 which you’re using in your argument for a 2015 to 2017 spending spree.

        Machado got his 11.5 in either arbitration, or at least avoiding arbitration. The O’s had no choice but to pay him.

        Why you mention Davis’ salary prior to his new contract (2015) is irrelevant. And despite deffered money and signing bonuses, his per year team hit stays constant at 21 whatever it is.

        And I already conceded to you Ubaldo as a big name signing bust.

        And if you think that Elias won’t have to pay his guys when they actually accomplish something as ball players, then he is indeed a boy genius.

        And as far as not justifying the expense of their payroll, lets not forget that it was just a coule of years ago, the O’s were on a string of 4 seasons that lead both leagues in total wins. It’s just in the last 2 that things have fallen apart.

        It was the price of doing business as a winning/successful team that brought up the payroll, not a spending spree.

    • ClayDal

      May 22, 2019 at 2:47 pm

      I use the period from 2015-17 to point out that there spending went up dramatically while attendance stagnated then dropped off. Whenever they signed Jones and Hardy, the bulk of their contracts were in the 3 years mentioned. As far as Machado the Orioles could have traded him before his arbitration number reached 16 mil. Same with Britton at 12.5 mil. Look if Hays, Mountcastle , Stewart, and the rest come up and succeed, in 3yrs arbitration and 6 yrs free agency. But if the MASN dispute lingers and attendance can’t get passed 2.4 million management will have to make some painful decisions. It’s just the economics of modern baseball. See the KC Royals

    • SailinO

      May 23, 2019 at 6:46 am

      Bottom line – the O’s spent money in accord with “ the price of doing business in the major leagues”. Those players tanked and failed miserably last season. Change is needed and painful. There is a reason retread “stars” like Colon and Shields are unsigned, and their presence here would only block the evaluation and development of what little pitching the team possesses.

  3. CalsPals

    May 22, 2019 at 9:01 am

    Territory that comes with leadership positions, you’re not there to be everyone’s buddy, true colors will come out, millennials are marshmallows, give everyone a medal or trophy, don’t know how to deal with hardly any kind of adversity…

    • Hallbe62

      May 22, 2019 at 1:01 pm

      I have to agree with you on the millennial thing. Like Beatniks on steroids. Worst generation I’ve ever dealt with.

      But back to the O’s………Patience, patience, patience. At least 3 seasons worth.

      They should try some of Bill Veeck’s crazy promotional ideas. That will get a few thousand more thru the gates. But competitive baseball in Charm City is at least 3-4 years away. Like it or not.

  4. willmiranda

    May 22, 2019 at 9:58 am

    David Hess is throwing a no-hitter in the seventh inning and gets yanked to rest him up for May and June. David Hess is getting bombed in May and is left in so the relievers won’t get exhausted. Well, at least Hyde has a well-rested pitching staff. I know others disagree, but I think that yanking early in the season was a psychological gut shot. It showed a failure to recognize the rarity of opportunity and the need to answer the knock immediately. As I admitted, the odds of immortality were low, but a refusal to try was inexcusable. It was an act of timidity that has shaped the season. Recent example: pulling Armstrong when he was pitching well to rush in a reliever who, like Hess’s successor in April, promptly surrendered a homer.

    • Orial

      May 22, 2019 at 12:17 pm

      Good point(psychological gut shot).

  5. Orial

    May 22, 2019 at 10:46 am

    Let me chime in AGAIN. I did bash the farm system for having nothing to help the present situation out. But YES I do agree that the O’s could have done a better job in bolstering the pitching staff(Shields,Ervin Santana,Colon,Edwin Jackson,anybody) to hold the fort down. Straily and Karns don’t cut it.

    • ClayDal

      May 22, 2019 at 11:03 am

      Agree that Straily is a disappointment. Little harsh on Karns. Out all last year with an injury still not 100% Only pitched 4 innings this year to a 0.00 era. If Shields and Colon were signed today it would be at least 6 weeks to 2 months before they could take the mound. There are 29 other teams out there and no one has signed either one of them. There are plenty of teams out there that could use pitching and some of them are actually contenders. So it’s not just the Orioles who are taking a pass

      • Orial

        May 22, 2019 at 12:19 pm

        True BUT the Orioles are more desperate than most others and don’t have the luxury of “passing”.

    • ClayDal

      May 22, 2019 at 12:42 pm

      How are the Orioles “desperate “ ? They were awful last year and they knew they were going to be awful this year. Probably going to be awful in 2020. Desperate teams would be the Nats and the Mets who made plenty of off season moves expecting to be a contender. The only justification for signing Shields or Colon would be to eat up some innings to save the bullpen. Hopefully Cobb will come back soon Cashner will almost certain to be traded at the deadline. Bundy is trending upward and keeping fingers crossed on Means. Hess I’m afraid is probably better suited for the bullpen. Right now Keegan Aiken is about the only starting pitcher at Norfolk that has a respectable era. Look, for 14 years (1998-2011) the Orioles tried to stay respectable with mid-level signings and trades ( Kevin Millar Aubrey Huff Jeff Conine etc ). All they ended up doing was spinning their wheels. Signing a bunch of over the hill pitchers isn’t going to make any difference in the Orioles season.

  6. NormOs

    May 22, 2019 at 11:25 am

    Of the 25 guys on the active roster, 19 should try another sport. Baseball ain’t workin’ out!

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      May 22, 2019 at 2:19 pm

      I’d suggest Quidditch. They’re millenials after all and they still get to use a stick.

    • Ekim

      May 23, 2019 at 2:10 pm


  7. Tony Paparella

    May 22, 2019 at 1:09 pm

    I don’t agree with picking up some of those guys that are out there for pitching help. Outside of having to pay more money for those guys by the time they are ready to really pitch it will be August. You bring up some guys in the system that have pitched a couple years or so and try your luck. Yes what is happening now is a joke but you have to keep trekking along the lines of developing what you have.

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