Orioles win second straight against Yankees as Stewart hits two homers; Akin outpitches Cole - BaltimoreBaseball.com

Rich Dubroff

Orioles win second straight against Yankees as Stewart hits two homers; Akin outpitches Cole

Photo Credit: Joy R. Absalon

BALTIMORE—After 19 straight defeats to the New York Yankees, the Orioles have suddenly won two in a row against them. Not only did they beat the Yankees, but they defeated the highest-paid pitcher in baseball, Gerrit Cole.

They they did it behind the pitching of Keegan Akin, who was making his second start, and the bat of rightfielder DJ Stewart, who didn’t have a hit in 17-at bats. Stewart hit two home runs after starting in right field for Anthony Santander, whose season is probably over because of a strained right oblique muscle.

The 6-1 win Saturday night at Camden Yards gives the Orioles an 18-21 record.

“We’re building a nice foundation now,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “Some of these guys are starting to feel more comfortable in the big leagues.”

Cole struck out eight of the first nine Orioles he faced, and had a one-hit shutout through five innings.

Stewart led off the sixth with a home run to right, his first hit in 2020.

“It’s very satisfying,” Stewart said. “Any time you start slow, it weighs in the back of your head.”

With one out, Hanser Alberto reached on a throwing error by third baseman Thairo Estrada. With two outs, José Iglesias walked for just the second time this season. Pedro Severino walked to load the bases, and Ryan Mountcastle singled to score Alberto and Iglesias.

Rio Ruiz hit a ball down the right-field line that the ball boy inadvertently fielded. Ruiz was awarded a double, Severino and Mountcastle scored for a 5-0 lead after six.

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The five-run inning equaled the biggest of the season for the Orioles.

Akin allowed three hits in 5 1/3 scoreless innings, striking out eight and walking four while throwing 91 pitches. Although he didn’t get the win, he outperformed Cole.

“I would say it’s very exciting,” Akin said. “With that caliber of pitcher on the mound, you’ve got to go out there and keep your team in the ballgame and hope they put up runs, like they did.”

Hyde liked what he saw from Akin.

“Really impressed by Keegan Akin’s poise and just how he attacked the lineup,” Hyde said.

Dillon Tate recorded four outs and picked up the win.

Stewart homered to start the seventh, his second of the game, and the Orioles led, 6-0.

After Friday’s second game, Hyde predicted that Stewart would break his slump, and it happened quickly.

Stewart began the season with the Orioles and, after going hitless in 14 at-bats, he was sent back to Bowie when the rosters were reduced from 30 to 28 on August 6th.

“He went to our secondary site, and really put the work in,” Hyde said. “Made some adjustments, made some improvements and came back here with some confidence, and it didn’t happen the first game or two for him, but to see him turn around a Gerrit Cole fastball and hit it for a home run to right, I know that was an amazing feeling for him because the work he’s put in has been outstanding.

“He’s always had a great attitude, too. I know he went down there with a great attitude, with the mindset of getting better and making some improvements, and he’s done that.”

Clint Frazier’s fifth home run in the eighth against Paul Fry was New York’s only run.

Oriole pitchers struck out 12 batters, equaling their season high.

Concern about injuries: Before play began in 2020, Hyde was worried that players would be injured more often than usual in this short season. Santander’s injury in the first game of Friday’s doubleheader drove home that point.

“It was my concern out of summer camp with the legs,” Hyde said.

“I think we’ve done an amazing job of keeping our guys in as good a shape as possible. I think that you’re seeing soft-tissue stuff around the league with position players.

“Whether that’s a quick ramp-up, a long delay, whatever it may be, the intensity. You can’t match a major league baseball game intensity. We’re playing intense games every single night where you see guys going hard, and those things are going to happen. We’re starting to get our fair share now of guys that are a little bit banged up.”

Fry on Orioles bullpen: The trades of Miguel Castro and Mychal Givens this past week leave Fry as the most senior member of the Orioles’ bullpen. He joined the team in June 2018.

“It’s just part of the business,” Fry said. “We kind of all knew that it was coming. We still have to pick each other up. We’ve still got to go out there and do our jobs whether that’s the ninth inning or the fifth or sixth inning. We’re all trying to fit in new roles. It’s going to be exciting to see what happens.”

Roster move: The Orioles optioned David Hess to their alternate site at Bowie after the game. He had been elevated earlier in the day and wasn’t used in the game.

Hyde said the Orioles would announce Sunday’s starter on Sunday.

Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB

23 Comments

23 Comments

  1. CalsPals

    September 6, 2020 at 8:43 am

    Wow, Hyde predicted DJ’s hits, clairvoyant, I didn’t know, congrats for the breakout game, now show some consistency, I was more impressed with Mountcastle battling & getting his hit w/2 strikes on him, I’m guessing Cole just grooves a fastball to DJ because of his lack of production…enjoy it & move on…go O’s…

  2. Orial

    September 6, 2020 at 8:49 am

    Tremendous win. The O’s had no business winning that game. Depleted lineup,players out of position,best player gone for season,facing arguably MLB’s best pitcher,Yankees,player in RF that every body despises,rookie on the mound. So what happens? Well the rest is history. Bad seeing Santander go down but he has been struggling lately and this team has built a “next man up” persona. So who would predict it?–Stewart/Akin as the stars. Hays back in maybe a couple of weeks? Possibly? I know it’s a rib injury but my God. It’s every year with this guy. Come on Austin the train is departing. Sorry had to spew on somebody. Generally though I’ve been impressed with this 2020 club.

  3. Bhoffman1

    September 6, 2020 at 8:57 am

    I’m happy to say I was wrong when I said Hyde saw something good in DJ at bats prior to last night. He looks and hit like Ruth last night. Mountcastle rookie of the year if they give it out this year. Akin out pitch Cole. The win reminded me of the glory years here.

  4. mmcmillan1123

    September 6, 2020 at 9:29 am

    What a way to break a slump with a home run off Gerrit Cole then follow it up with another long blast! With Santander and Hays out both DJ and Mason Williams will get plenty of AB’s for the rest of the year an can really be evaluated. Hope Hyde picks Kremer to start today’s game.

    • Hallbe62

      September 6, 2020 at 12:16 pm

      Yes, let’s see what Kremer has.

  5. B.C. Bird

    September 6, 2020 at 9:41 am

    Well congrats to Hyde for his handling of the bullpen tonight, he surprised me when he did not bring in Sulser. Maybe there is hope after all
    Keep the faith

  6. Boog Robinson Robinson

    September 6, 2020 at 10:19 am

    “Some of these guys are starting to feel more comfortable in the big leagues.” ….Brandon Hyde

    Awesome quote Rich! Finally we get a truism in Hyde’s tired bag-o-clichés and axioms.

    I know this is one game in a thousand for DJ Stewart, but this kid had a pedigree and was considered one of the top hitters in NCAA baseball at it’s highest level. Duquette saw something in him, and it’s why you don’t give up on him in a year & ½.

    It’s also the reason you get your blue-chippers to the bigs as soon as reasonably possible. One thing I’ve learned from playing strat-o-matic baseball for 50 years (go ahead and laugh at that if you’d like), is that for 9 out of 10 players, it takes 2 to 3 years, and maybe 1000 at bats or more to get up to speed. They almost all stink when 1st called up. If they can’t play by year 3, so be it, but to give up on these guys in a year is not wise.

    So I ask Tank Elias, how much further along would Sisco, Hays & Santander be right now if he had brought them up, and kept them up before or at the beginning of 2019? If I don’t miss my bet, I think Sisco will be hitting near .300 next year. We’re seeing it in Mullins this year. Maybe we’ll see it in Stewart & Hays next. Time and at bats and patience. Duquette’s boys are coming of age.

    • spwagner44

      September 6, 2020 at 1:15 pm

      Great points Sir !

  7. spwagner44

    September 6, 2020 at 1:21 pm

    Could you imagine an outfield of Austin Hayes, Mountcastle and Anthony Santander? That is all-star caliber stuff in a year or two of experienced playtime? Wow that would be an awesome outfield?

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      September 6, 2020 at 2:02 pm

      Mountcastle is bound for 1st base eventually. The timing depends on Mancini.

  8. spwagner44

    September 6, 2020 at 1:23 pm

    I think Brandon Hyde is going to be the coach until the team gets really good, and then when the team is playing playoff level baseball or a championship level baseball, then they’re going to replace hide with an experience manager like Mike Scioscia or Joe Girardi. ?
    I think manager Hyde is just here for the growth process and the teaching process?

    • CalsPals

      September 6, 2020 at 2:15 pm

      Someone asked quite awhile ago & we got no answer, curious what the length of his & the almighty’s contracts are…go O’s…

      • Rich Dubroff

        September 6, 2020 at 2:59 pm

        Ray, we don’t know because they haven’t been disclosed. I think you can probably guess the length of both and be correct.

    • Hallbe62

      September 6, 2020 at 2:28 pm

      Former Catchers make great managers imo.

    • CalsPals

      September 6, 2020 at 4:37 pm

      There is an unemployed, former catcher, World Series winning manager out there…go O’s…

    • VICTORTEE

      September 7, 2020 at 8:59 am

      Do you really think a top notch experienced manager will want to be a low paid puppet for the Boy Genius?

    • CalsPals

      September 7, 2020 at 9:29 am

      Not really, just stated he was out there…at some point they will have to start paying real MLB money for employees, I’m quite sure Elias micro-managing will come & probably be a deal breaker…go O’s…

  9. NormOs

    September 6, 2020 at 2:33 pm

    Question guys: Is Mullins on the DL and why is Sisco not catching when the O’s are facing a pretty good right-handed pitcher?

    • Rich Dubroff

      September 6, 2020 at 2:58 pm

      Norm, as I wrote on Twitter earlier today, Mullins is day-to-day with an undisclosed injury. he’s not on the IL. I’m sure with a rookie pitcher on the mound, Hyde wanted his most experienced catcher, and that’s Bryan Holaday, who works well with young pitchers.

  10. Birdman

    September 6, 2020 at 3:20 pm

    The mullet is becoming a pretty good look for Orioles pitchers.

  11. Orioledude

    September 6, 2020 at 4:04 pm

    What has happened to Cedric Mullins? Mason Williams is NOT the answer

    • Jbigle1

      September 6, 2020 at 4:53 pm

      Hurt. Mason Williams (Bhoff’s boy) is our de facto 4th outfielder. Everyone should’ve known he stunk but he can competently play all 3 OF slots. Elias certainly did…. But Hays will soon be back and he will be DFA’d again. Where I’m certain he’ll pass thru waivers and find his way back to Bowie.

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