Zimmermann stars in long relief as Orioles pound Yankees; Franco, Mountcastle pace offense - BaltimoreBaseball.com

Rich Dubroff

Zimmermann stars in long relief as Orioles pound Yankees; Franco, Mountcastle pace offense

Photo credit: Joy R. Absalon

BALTIMORE—Bruce Zimmermann wasn’t the starter after his recall from Norfolk, and he was put into a difficult spot. He started the second inning after the Yankees scored four in the first against Adam Plutko. Zimmermann was up to the task.

He pitched 5 2/3 innings, giving up just one run, a home run to Aaron Judge, on a 3-1 pitch after the home plate umpire appeared to miss a strike with the count 2-and-1. Zimmermann gave the Orioles a chance to to come back, which they did  with six extra-base hits in their 10-6 win over the New York Yankees before 11,070 at Oriole Park on Sunday.

The Orioles (17-23) had lost seven of eight and the first two of their three-game series against the Yankees.

Manager Brandon Hyde decided to start Plutko, who’d been strong in relief, instead of Zimmermann, who was recalled Sunday morning, because the Yankees are mostly a right-handed hitting team.

The Yankees (22-18) pounded Plutko, who began the inning with a 1.27.ERA, for four runs.

DJ LeMahieu led off with a walk. Luke Voit and Aaron Judge singled to load the bases. Gio Urshela grounded to third baseman Maikel Franco, who began a 5-3 double play, which allowed LeMahieu to score.

Gary Sanchez hit a two-run home run, his fifth, and Clint Frazier followed with his fourth, and New York had a 4-0 lead. Plutko’s ERA zoomed to 2.82.

“It was established beforehand, that was the idea, to get through the top of the lineup once so I only had to face them twice,” Zimmermann said. “I didn’t change my mindset. I was coming in, and I was prepared to go starter amount of innings.

“I definitely don’t have an issue with that. It was nice to come in and go at them right away. An interesting approach, I’m all for it if we have to do it again.”


Yankees starter Jordan Montgomery walked Trey Mancini with two outs in the bottom of the first. Mancini scored on Ryan Mountcastle’s double, and Pedro Severino singled to score Mountcastle to cut the Yankees’ lead to 4-2. Both hits were to right field.

Zimmermann, who was optioned on May 3rd so that the Orioles could limit his innings, had a quick 1-2-3 second inning but gave up Judge’s 12th home run of the season, his fourth this weekend and seventh against the Orioles in 2021, with one out in the third. The home run traveled 443 feet.

In 5 2/3 innings, Zimmermann (2-3) gave up just the one run, two hits, struck out six and walked one.  He was told on Thursday that he’d be coming back to pitch on Sunday.

“I think it definitely helps,” Zimmermann said of his time away. He threw three innings at Norfolk. “It gave me time to step back and really identify some things that I wanted to focus on, to do better up here, but work on down there. I think it was great to get down there to and work on those things.”

The Orioles tied the score at 5 in the third. Austin Hays doubled and moved to third on a wild pitch. Mancini walked, and Hays scored on Mountcastle’s fly ball to left.

Maikel Franco, who had been 4-for-52 before his first-inning single, doubled to right to score Mancini, who moved to second on a wild pitch by Montgomery. Franco scored on Freddy Galvis’ single to tie it.

The Orioles took a 6-5 lead against Michael King (0-1) in the fourth on doubles by Cedric Mullins and Mancini.

Franco’s two-run home run in the seventh, his fourth, and his first since April 25th, gave the Orioles an 8-5 lead. It was Franco’s second three-hit game of the season.

Mountcastle, who had been hitless in his last 14 at-bats, had a two-run single up the middle in the eighth to make it 10-5. He drove in four runs for the first time in his major league career.

It was the Orioles’ second game of the year in which they scored at least 10 runs. In Zimmermann’s first start of the season on April 4th, they beat Boston, 11-3.

“I thought today was our best offensive approach we had, maybe since the beginning of the season, maybe all year,” Hyde said. “The majority of our damage was done up the middle, the other way. Besides the Franco homer to the pull side, we really stayed on the ball well today.”

Tanner Scott relieved Zimmermann and struck out LeMahieu to end the seventh. Scott allowed a single to Luke Voit and walked Judge to begin the eighth. Paul Fry relieved him and got Gio Urshela to hit into a double play and struck out Sanchez.

César Valdez pitched the ninth, allowing a run on three hits.

Notes: Infielder Ramón Urias was optioned to Triple-A Norfolk to make room for Zimmermann. … Pitching coach Chris Holt, who is also the team’s director of pitching, remains on personal leave. Bullpen coach and assistant pitching coach Darren Holmes has been filling in and Tim Cossins, the major league field coordinator and catching instructor, has been in the bullpen. … The Orioles are off on Monday and open a three-game series with Tampa Bay on Tuesday night. … Hyde said that Jorge López, who allowed five runs in two innings on Saturday night, will remain in the rotation, and Zimmermann could re-enter it.  … All three games this weekend were sellouts, and Sunday’s was the largest crowd of the season. … Mullins has a 10-game hitting streak.

Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB



  1. CalsPals

    May 16, 2021 at 5:41 pm

    George Lopez has earned the right to stay in the rotation/s….nice win, love their tenacity…go O’s…

    • FantasyGM

      May 16, 2021 at 6:10 pm


      Principal BRR I believe this may call for one of your patented beratings! Don’t disappoint!

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        May 16, 2021 at 7:39 pm

        I didn’t berate him for 2 reasons.

        1. I GOT the joke.
        2. I only berate those that take personal attacks on people …think they’re smarter than the average bear, and especially those that call me a racist without any knowledge of me what-so-ever, and never have the decency to apologize.

        • Hallbe62

          May 17, 2021 at 9:23 am

          Not even close to the truth Mr. Kenny boy.

          You once attacked me because I had the gall to predict a WS outcome.

          You’ll do it again….soon.

          This is NOT your personal bitch facility. It’s a comment section for everyone. Not just for MLB GM’s like His Royal Highness.

          Don’t bother replying with your mumbo jumbo.

          And STOP denying your petty traits.

          OWN THEM

          • Boog Robinson Robinson

            May 17, 2021 at 2:53 pm

            I don’t remember attacking because of a WS prediction. Not saying I didn’t, just don’t remember. And I couldn’t imagine being nasty about a WS prediction. If I did…I truly apologize. If that is really the case, I was wrong, and I truly apologize. Sometimes I may try to be funny, and miss that mark. And if this were the case…I truly apologize.

            As far as YOU …. I DO remember you attacking me just a month or so ago, telling me that I’m always wrong about everything. I asked for an example. You gave none. Nobody ever has. Maybe the Chance Sisco thing? I dunno. But nobody is ever specific. Why is that?

            Now for some more mumbo jumbo, if I want to complain about a GM, I”ll complain. If I want to complain about a tanking franchise, I’ll complain.

            And yes…I go by Kenny. I’ll own that.

            One more thing .. I NEVER lie.

    • CalsPals

      May 16, 2021 at 6:15 pm

      If you pay attention to what I’ve written, you’ll notice I called him that the last time, quote “Jorge Lopez is pitching more like George Lopez”, that would require 5th grade reading skills….LMAO…go O’s…

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        May 16, 2021 at 7:46 pm

        He doesn’t read what other people write.

  2. FantasyGM

    May 16, 2021 at 5:49 pm

    Great comeback win by the O’s today! Zimmermann looks ready to return to the rotation! How did Mullins build up another 10 game hitting streak so quietly, what a season he is having.

    Orioles 2021 winning pct of 0.425 is now just a tad bit better than last year’s 0.417. Improving from 2018 to 2019 to 2020 to 2021, that’s encouraging.

    Stay tuned for the Orioles relief pitching recommendations coming later today…teaser, though it will be hard to say goodbye to new father Shawn Armstrong, the time has come to say adieu.

    Let us continue to remember the 1980’s fondly, when men were men, and all starters pitched 200+ innings a year dern it!

  3. Boog Robinson Robinson

    May 16, 2021 at 5:59 pm

    Did you read that one Pajama Boy! Ramon Urias was optioned? And it’s still Mid May … exactly as predicted the day they finalized the opening day roster. Scary isn’t it?

    Disclaimer … AKA hedging my bet ….Considering our management team, I would not be surprised one iota if we haven’t seen the last of him.

    • FantasyGM

      May 16, 2021 at 6:15 pm

      I am sure you very very very pleased with yourself and your awesome prediction. As they used to say in the 80s, don’t break your arm patting yourself on your back.

      Urias most likely will be back as he was rated higher than both Ruiz and Valaika. Hopefully the Os can coach him up and he can get over his throwing error problem, though I am sure you hope Urias falls flat on his face so you can crow like a rooster about your prognostic prowess, this ultimately all about you right?

      Drink Pepsi, get diabetes unfortunately

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        May 16, 2021 at 7:42 pm

        I AM very pleased. That one was for you. You’re wrong .. and I’m right. Bwahahaaahaaaahaaaaaahhaaa So much for OPS ‘eh bra?

    • CalsPals

      May 16, 2021 at 6:17 pm

      Man, pajama boy is struggling today…go O’s…

    • CalsPals

      May 16, 2021 at 7:09 pm

      Not sure how he’ll be able to watch games without Uranus…go O’s…

    • CalsPals

      May 16, 2021 at 7:10 pm

      Damn spellcheck, Urias, although that was funnier…go O’s…

  4. Icterus fan

    May 16, 2021 at 6:43 pm

    Good stuff today! Enjoying the repartee on the board here as well as a win today.
    Thank goodness we didn’t get swept.
    Timely hitting (at last), nice appearance by Zim and another save by Valdez.
    It will be ok, Birdland.

    I like our guys

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      May 16, 2021 at 7:49 pm

      Valdez … save. Yup, I guess that technically you call it that. In reality, we were sweating it out. They need to go another direction with the closer. These guys are starting to tee him up.

    • Bhoffman1

      May 17, 2021 at 12:17 pm

      Three hits and a run could have been another blown save. The league has caught on to his slow ball he’s is not a closer Hyde if somehow you read this

  5. millboy

    May 16, 2021 at 7:18 pm

    I guess Mike Elias and Brandon Hyde are fuming this evening because the Birds came back from that 4 run first inning deficit…how dare these “soft” players play with heart and be competitive

  6. BarstoolSleeper

    May 16, 2021 at 7:56 pm

    Looks like Zim didn’t mind taking the Norfolk shuttle. He didn’t get his feelings hurt. It was quite the opposite, he said he was able to work on some things and get better. Imagine that fellas.

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      May 16, 2021 at 8:03 pm

      Yeah I read all that too. But really? What else would you expect him to say?

      • CalsPals

        May 17, 2021 at 9:18 am

        And without any prompting from Crash Davis…LOL…Go O’s…

    • OriolesNumber1Fan

      May 16, 2021 at 8:28 pm

      I agree with you barstool!! Took it like a man. Told the truth. He knew he made some mistakes pitching wise and went down and worked on them. No crybabies here with Zim. Refreshing to see someone admit to their shortcomings and do something about it. No conspiracy theories here, just great work ethics!

  7. Orial

    May 16, 2021 at 9:06 pm

    HiInteresting,gutsy win that displayed a little of both the good and bad in this 2021 version of a “rebuilding” team. Geez Sutko if you didn’t wanna start today you could have just simply told us. My God. I feel bad for Yankees/Aaron Judge fans—you know after carying the team on his back and having the fans burping their glee in our faces that he’s about to tear his “glute” and go on the 60 day IL. If that didn’t unfortunately seal the deal that the Valdez fun train is over I don’t know what will. Other than the NYY 450 foot homer power vs the O’s warning track power the O’s plate discipline won this game. They really impressed. Hats off to Zimmerman,Mountcastle and Franco. Again–great and gutsy win. Btw check out that Bowie win today–worth investigating.

  8. WorldlyView

    May 17, 2021 at 3:11 pm

    Instead of all of these nasty jibes and rejoinders, it would have been far more productive if you people addressed my burning question: how many teenage prospects do you think we will get in the trade of the soon-to-be-free agent Means?

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      May 17, 2021 at 3:54 pm

      Bite your tongue. They wouldn’t be so low as to trade Means would they?

    • CalsPals

      May 17, 2021 at 4:18 pm

      I hate to agree with WV on this, but that’s what my crystal ball is saying, not sure we’d get too much as he’s 28, hope we’re wrong on this…go O’s…

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        May 17, 2021 at 5:39 pm

        I think you could get a fortune for him. Especially if you found a serious playoff bound team in need of that one piece.

        • WorldlyView

          May 17, 2021 at 6:34 pm

          The “fortune” would, of course, have to be in the form of low-salaried players. High performing MLB players would upset both the rebuild and budget strategies.

          • Boog Robinson Robinson

            May 17, 2021 at 9:05 pm

            I’m thinking 3 to 5 decent to highly rated prospects on minor league deals.

    • CalsPals

      May 17, 2021 at 6:03 pm

      IF they trade him I really hope you’re right…go O’s…

  9. WorldlyView

    May 17, 2021 at 6:19 pm

    I now wish to praise ownership/management for Operation Cheapskate. They have proven correct in spending as little as possible on current players, the criticisms from some fans notwithstanding. My reasoning comes from the brief “tells the big story” fact in Rich’s comments above: “All three games this weekend were sellouts, and Sunday’s was the largest crowd of the season.” It doesn’t make sense to spend a lot of money when you are filling every available seat. Grin and bear it.

    • Icterus fan

      May 17, 2021 at 7:04 pm

      We’re facing the Rays next (they fortunately rid themselves of the threatening satanic “devil” moniker) and we are likely going to watch them disassemble us as they flaunt their cost conscious lineup. They, like the Astros seem to know how to follow the template of building from within.
      This AL East is a tough spot to rebuild, eh?

      I like our guys

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        May 17, 2021 at 9:19 pm

        The Astros …. c’mon. See where their once vaunted minor league system is currently rated? Very much middle of the pack, and sinking faster than Hoffa in a vat of wet cement. Tanking for draft picks as a strategy is not sustainable.

        Now the DEVIL Rays seem to have it down. They seem to be able to draft good players without having to tank their way to the front of the draft order. They put a decent team on the field most years without ever bottoming out.

        And the Devil Rays play in the AL East. It can be done.

        Don’t Fly Delta

        PS…I looked up the word “Icterus” … care to explain?

    • Icterus fan

      May 18, 2021 at 6:04 am

      Crack researcher you are Boog.
      You didn’t Google my last name – galbula. Otherwise you’d think I have liver disease.
      “Drink Pepsi” – care to explain?

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        May 18, 2021 at 11:30 am

        Thanks makes sense now .. .and yeah, I thought you had jaundous .. LOL

        Drink Pepsi … Fly United … Boycott Denver ……all these are my way of justifying (in my own mind at least) my continued following of baseball after the Manfred/Atlanta decision. It’s my little form of protest. I actually cut myself off from the game for a month in protest, but I’m a weak man and eventually caved. I made a statement earlier this year here that I was having a hard time supporting baseball after that decision, but stopped short of saying I was out. I knew I was a whore for the game, and may not be able to keep it up all year.

        So I no longer by Coca Cola nor fly Delta since those two Atlanta based companies sold their own city out by whoring out the current political climate. I would also love to start a ground roots movement to boycott this years Colorado All Star Game!

        I feel sports should be a politics free zone so to speak. Maybe I’m just not realistic, but that’s how I feel.

        Drink Pepsi !!

        • Boog Robinson Robinson

          May 18, 2021 at 11:46 am

          So I no longer “buy” coca cola … I hate it when I do that.

  10. Mickraut

    May 18, 2021 at 10:06 am

    Icterus fan-

    Big smile the first time I ever saw your name. Long live the icterus galbula !

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      May 18, 2021 at 11:37 am

      Funny, it makes most people around here cringe. 🙂

    • Icterus fan

      May 18, 2021 at 12:34 pm

      Thanks Mickraut. Glad you enjoyed it!

      I didn’t think it was that hard to grasp, given that this is an ORIOLES forum, not a forum for people afflicted with jaundice, but hey, ya can’t judge, right?

      I like our guys

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        May 18, 2021 at 2:14 pm

        Oooops…Guess I’m not an ornathologist.

        Drink Pepsi

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