The Orioles hoped that in their sixth try to get to the .500 mark, they’d be successful. Until the eighth inning of Tuesday night’s game against the Mariners, it seemed as if they had a good chance.
However, Seattle scored four runs against the Orioles’ bullpen and beat Baltimore, 5-2, before 6,504 at T-Mobile Park on Tuesday night.
Orioles reliever Travis Lakins (1-3) loaded the bases when Sam Haggerty led off with a base hit, and Mitch Haniger and Ty France walked. Tanner Scott relieved Lakins and gave up a a sacrifice fly to Kyle Seager and a three-run home run to Kyle Lewis, his third of the season.
The Orioles (14-16) had many scoring opportunities but left 12 runners on base. They left the bases loaded three times, and they’re 1-for-18 with runners in scoring position in the series.
“We had so many opportunities to score and didn’t get the big hit,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “We had traffic on the bases multiple times, couldn’t drive them in, and that led to a tight game, and led to a 1-1 game in the eighth inning.
“Travis Lakins’ last couple of games have been a little bit of a hiccup. He’d been really good up to that point. Tanner Scott came in, and threw strikes, and we got beat. We beat ourselves by not being able to push runners across earlier in the game.”
Rafael Montoro (3-1) threw 1 2/3 scoreless innings for Seattle. After Keynan Middleton was forced to leave the game in the ninth, Robert Dugger finished the inning for his first save, although he allowed an RBI single to Trey Mancini.
Mancini had three hits, his second three-hit game of the season.
The Orioles scored their first run on Rio Ruiz’s home run, his third, in the fifth.
Jorge López gave up a home run to Seager in the fourth. López allowed a run on three hits in 4 1/3 innings.
He walked two and struck out four. In five of his six starts, López has failed to complete the fifth inning.
“It’s something I have to work on,” López said. “The last couple of outings have been the same and same and same. I haven’t been thinking about that.
“It doesn’t have to be like that. It’s frustrating. I know everybody wants to get seven innings as a starter. I’ve got to do a better job of getting through those [innings.]
Lopez didn’t get much support.
“I’d love to get a lead so that I could try to get him through the fifth,” Hyde said. “It would be nice, but we’re just not allowing that to happen.”
Zimmermann’s demotion: Starter Bruce Zimmermann was optioned to the alternate site before Monday night’s game. He’ll pitch for Triple-A Norfolk as the Orioles try to limit his innings, as they did with Dean Kremer last month.
“Giving him a little bit of a breather,” Hyde said. “A reset in a lot of ways. Probably shorten up his outings to keep those innings limited but continue to work on the things that he’s been working on here and, hopefully, see us back here real soon.”
Zimmermann is eligible to return on May 13th, which is a scheduled offday. The team will next need a fifth starter on May 11th.
“I thought Zimm has done a nice job,” Hyde said. “He’s learning at the big league level in a tough league, tough division. He’s going to be back soon.”
Minor leagues return: Catcher Adley Rutschman was hitless in five at-bats, striking out three times, in the Bowie Baysox’s 2-1 win over the Altoona Curve in the first minor league action since September 2019.
DL Hall allowed two hits in 4 1/3 scoreless innings. Hall struck out 10 and walked two.
Grayson Rodriguez pitched four scoreless innings, allowing a hit and two walks while striking out five, as the Aberdeen IronBirds beat the Wilmington Blue Rocks, 10-1.
It was Aberdeen’s first game as the Orioles’ High-A affiliate.
Rightfielder Kyle Stowers had three RBIs, including a two-run home run. Shortstop Joey Ortiz had three hits and designated hitter Johnny Rizer had a two-run home run.
Stowers, Ortiz and Rizer were all high draft choices in 2019.
Conner Greene allowed seven runs, six earned on five hits, walking four in 1 2/3 innings as the Norfolk Tides lost to the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp, 11-5.
Tyler Nevin had a two-run home run.
Delmarva’s game with Salem was suspended because of rain after 1 ½ innings with the Shorebirds trailing, 3-2. Gunnar Henderson hit a two-run home run for Delmarva.
The suspended game will be resumed Wednesday at 5:05 pm at Arthur W. Perdue Stadium before the regularly scheduled game. The Shorebirds are the only Orioles’ minor league team to be home this week.
This season, each minor league team will play six-game series from Tuesday-Sunday. Mondays are offdays.
Notes: Former Orioles left-hander Wade LeBlanc signed a minor league contract with the Milwaukee Brewers. … John Means (3-0, 1.70) will face Seattle left-hander Yusei Kukuchi (1-1, 4.40) on Wednesday at 3:40 pm.
Call for questions: I’ll be answering questions about the Orioles later this week. You may leave yours in the comment box below or email them to: [email protected].