BALTIMORE—After 4 ½ hours, and some superb relief pitching, the Orioles came apart in the 13th inning when the Seattle Mariners used their speed to steal a 7-6 victory Saturday night.
Shawn Armstrong retired all six batters he faced in the ninth and 10th, and Dillon Tate polished off Seattle in the 11th and 12th. After Tate retired Dylan Moore on a pop to short to start the 13th, manager Brandon Hyde called for Tanner Scott, whose first batter, Dee Gordon, flied to left.
Mallex Smith grounded to second and Scott, covering first, couldn’t handle Hanser Alberto’s throw for an error. Smith stole second, and as Tim Lopes beat out an infield single after grounding to third baseman Rio Ruiz, Smith sped around third and scored.
“I thought, first we botched a … play to allow the baserunner, batter to reach first base,” Hyde said. “We don’t hold him and he steals second. Then a heads-up play by Mallex Smith, who is a plus-plus runner.
“Then kind of a tough play for Rio because it’s a chopper he either has to come get or stay back, and if he stays back he has to really get rid of it. Bang-bang at first base, safe. Tough play but the runner shouldn’t have been on first base in the first place.”
The game was played in four hours, 42 minutes, the Orioles’ ninth game of four hours or more. Three have been played in the last week.
“It’s definitely a tough way to lose,” Austin Hays said. “You’ve got to give them props on that play. They had speed at the plate and speed at second. They were both digging hard … Those guys were too quick on that play.”
In the bottom of the 13th, the Mariners’ 10th pitcher, Erik Swanson, hit Jonathan Villar with a pitch with one out. Villar stole his 38th base and moved to third. Dwight Smith Jr. was called out on strikes to end the Orioles’ second-longest game this season.
On July 25, the Orioles beat the Los Angeles Angels, 10-8, in 16 innings.
Seattle’s victory over the Orioles leaves them reduced to hoping for a series win in their final home game of the season on Sunday. Their record is 50-105.
“This team has had more tough losses than I think I’ve ever witnessed in a season,” Hyde said. “I think we’re due to win some of these games, and it just doesn’t happen.”
J.P. Crawford’s three-run home run against Mychal Givens in the eighth inning put Seattle ahead, 6-4.
A crowd of 22,556, the largest since July 16, drawn by a Sherpa blanket giveaway, watched the Orioles take a 4-3 lead in the bottom of the fifth on an RBI single by Alberto.
Branden Kline retired all five batters he faced when he relieved Asher Wojciechowski in the top of the fifth, although a passed ball by catcher Pedro Severino allowed the tying run to score.
Paul Fry loaded the bases in the seventh but escaped, and Givens was called on for the eighth.
Pinch-hitter Omar Narvaez singled and moved to second on a wild pitch by Givens. With two outs, Shed Long walked, and Crawford lined one over the right-field wall for his seventh home run.
It was the 13th home run allowed by Givens this season.
In the bottom of the eighth. Anthony Santander walked, and with two outs, Hays hit his second home run of the season against Sam Tuvailala to tie the score at 6.
Wojciechowski’s night: Wojciechowski allowed three runs, two earned, in 4 1/3 innings. Wojciechowski took a 3-0 lead into the third.
Long homered to begin the third. With one out in the fifth, Long doubled and scored on Crawford’s single.
After Kyle Lewis singled, Hyde went to the mound, and for the first time this season, didn’t remove the pitcher. He did after Kyle Seager singled to load the bases.
With Kline on the mound, and Tom Murphy at bat, Severino couldn’t handle a high pitch and was charged with a passed ball, his 10th of the season, and Crawford scored, tying the score at 3.
“I felt pretty good,” Wojciechowski said. “Just got into some deep counts and [they] fouled off some good pitches. Didn’t’ quite execute some pitches to get quick outs. Just a lot of deep counts, but I felt good. I thought I competed well. That fifth inning … didn’t execute quite as well.”
After Wojciechowski left the game, the Orioles played nearly three more hours.
“Those guys came in and competed their tails off,” Wojciechowski said. “They threw the ball really well. It was just a frustrating game when you play 13, and you come out on the losing side.”
The Orioles took a 3-0 lead in the second on a run-scoring double by Stevie Wilkerson and a two-run double by Richie Martin.
Williams’ status: Hyde hopes that Mason Williams, who injured his knee and shoulder in Tuesday’s game when he ran into the outfield wall, will play again before the end of the season.
“He’s day-to-day, and he’s sore,” Hyde said. “I would think so. I think on the road trip at some point, but I don’t know for sure.”