BALTIMORE—Back on April 1, David Hess was upset when Orioles manager Brandon Hyde removed him from a start in Toronto after he had no-hit the Blue Jays for 6 1/3 innings.
The Orioles barely hung on to win that game, and more than two months later, Hess got to face Toronto again. He held the Blue Jays hitless for an additional 2 2/3 innings, making it nine innings.
Vladimir Guerrero Jr. singled, and shortly Hess had a bases-loaded, two-out jam that he was able to escape with a strikeout.
But in the fifth, Hess ran out of pitches. He quickly loaded the bases and Lourdes Gurriel hit an infield single, and Hess was gone, replaced by Miguel Castro.
Castro gave up a grand-slam to Rowdy Tellez and also let in a run on a wild pitch as the Orioles lost to Toronto, 8-6, on Wednesday night.
The six runs the Orioles allowed in the fifth equaled the most they’d given up this season. Hess, who has not won in the 12 starts he has made since those 6 1/3 hitless innings, saw his record fall to 1-9. His ERA is 7.20.
“I think they put up some good at-bats that inning, and I just didn’t make pitches when I needed to, really,” Hess said. “The walks were really killer tonight, and so I think especially in that fifth inning that created a big inning for them and that’s something that needs to be limited.
“Every time I go out there I want to have confidence. I want to act on that and pitch according to that, but really I think again they put up good at-bats tonight. They really weren’t swinging at my slider off the plate and so that kind of got eliminated. I didn’t throw it for strikes enough and that kind of changed the game a little bit just for them to be able to eliminate a pitch. And then just have better at-bats with that in mind.”
Evan Phillips allowed two runs in the sixth as Toronto took an 8-2 lead.
The Blue Jays decided to use Derek Law as their opener. Originally, Edwin Jackson, who this season set a record by pitching for his 14th major league team, was set to start.
Instead, Law worked an inning, and Jackson, who was listed in Toronto’s press notes as “Featured Starter,” came in to start the second.
Jackson allowed two runs in five innings. One of them came on Trey Mancini’s 14th home run. Mancini also tripled in the first.
The loss prevented the Orioles from winning consecutive games for the first time since May 4-6. They could still win their first series since April 22-24 with a win on Thursday.
“It’s up to them at some point where they have to figure it out,” Hyde said. “I feel like tonight wasn’t our best night and there’s a couple pitches they’d like to have back, obviously, but I think we are getting better and I think we showed that in the last week when two tough places to pitch in Texas and Houston and we did a pretty nice job, and did a nice job yesterday. So, I think we are improving. Tonight we gave up eight.”
Late in the game, with few fans left, it began to rain, but the umpires, determined to complete nine innings, had the grounds crew pour sand on the mound and home plate.
In the midst of the foul weather, Chance Sisco’s two-run double, Renato Nunez’s infield out and Rio Ruiz’s single cut the lead to 8-6 in the eighth.
“We fought our way back,” Hanser Alberto said. “We’ve got to keep our heads up and be ready for the next one. They got some lucky hits, and the game is just like that.”
Toronto used four pitchers in the eighth.
After the rain stopped, the Orioles had another chance in the ninth. Daniel Hudson walked pinch-hitter Chris Davis hit Jonathan Villar with a pitch, and both advanced a base on Hudson’s wild pitch.
Hudson ended the four-hour, five-minute sloppy game by getting Anthony Santander to pop out and striking out Mancini and Sisco.
“It’s the guys you’d want coming up in that situation,” Hyde said. “It just didn’t happen tonight. But I thought we did a great job battling back from down 8-2,, making it interesting there at the end. Unfortunately, Hudson kind of turned it up there against those three guys, throwing waist-high heaters. We just didn’t get it done.”