Akin struggles in Orioles' 6th straight loss, 9-4 to Tigers; Santander hits 2 homers; Minor league update - BaltimoreBaseball.com

Rich Dubroff

Akin struggles in Orioles’ 6th straight loss, 9-4 to Tigers; Santander hits 2 homers; Minor league update

Photo Credit: Tommy Gilligan USA Today Sports

BALTIMORE—After losing his spot in the starting rotation when he landed on the Covid-19 injured list, left-hander Keegan Akin regained his place after he threw three scoreless innings in relief on August 3rd.

Akin’s place in the rotation might be in question again after he allowed six runs on seven hits in three innings as the Orioles lost to the Detroit Tigers, 9-4, before an announced crowd of 7,124 at Camden Yards on Tuesday night.

It was the sixth straight loss for the Orioles (38-73). They’ve allowed nine or more runs in each of the losses, a franchise record.

After retiring his first five batters, Akin (0-6) walked Niko Goodrum and allowed a run-scoring double to Willi Castro. Akil Baddoo followed with a triple and Detroit (55-60) led, 2-0.

Anthony Santander hit the first of two home runs against Casey Mize in the second. He has three home runs in his last two games.

Detroit scored four runs against Akin in the fourth. Robbie Grossman led off with a single and scored on former Oriole Jonathan Schoop’s double. Miguel Cabrera reached on an infield single. With two outs, Goodrum’s single scored Schoop and a triple by Castro’s triple brought home Cabrera and Goodrum to put the Tigers up, 6-1.

Akin was replaced by Marcos Diplán after three. Akin allowed six runs on seven hits.

“I didn’t execute my pitches as well as I should have,” Akin said. “When I was ahead in the count, I left balls over the plate that they could do damage with. I was not happy with it. I’ve just got to get better.”

Akin joined Dean Kremer as starters who failed to win in nine consecutive starts. Both had shown promise in a small sample size in 2020.

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“Keegan had his struggles tonight,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “Like a lot of our guys, it’s been a tough year. You can attribute that to a lost season last year, not much time in Triple-A, etc.”

Santander’s second home run, his ninth of the season, began the Orioles’ fourth. After Austin Hays struck out looking, DJ Stewart hit his eighth homer to reduce Detroit’s lead to 6-3.

Santander missed more than a month because of a sprained ankle and then 10 days last month when he and Akin were on the Covid-19 injured list.

“The most important thing for me is to try to stay healthy because that way I can help the team,” Santander said through a translator.

Cedric Mullins led off the fifth with a double, extending his hitting streak to 17 games, and advanced to third on a wild pitch. He scored when Ramón Urias bounced back to Mize, who threw the ball past Schoop at first base for an error.

Mize was removed after allowing four runs, three earned, on five hits in 4 1/3 innings.

Kyle Funkhouser (6-1) retired each of the five batters he faced after relieving Mize.

Diplán, who retired all five batters in his major league debut on Friday against Tampa Bay, pitched two perfect innings.

“I just like the way he’s come in and thrown strikes and shown good stuff,’ Hyde said. “Attacked hitters and went after them with a good, firm fastball. In spring training, I thought he had command issues, and he was trying a little bit too hard.

“He’s settled in nicely, and that’s a couple of nice appearances for him. I’m going to give him the ball more and see what happens.”

Paul Fry, who had three straight shaky outings, pitched a scoreless sixth.

Jeimer Candelario hit a two-run home run off Adam Plutko in the eighth for an 8-4 lead. Plutko has served up a home run in five straight outings and has given up 15 this year, a particularly high number for a reliever who has thrown just 55 2/3 innings.

In their last six games, the Orioles have allowed 24 runs in the eighth.

In the bottom of the eighth, Baddoo, in left, and Derek Hill, in center, collided when running down Santander’s fly ball to left-center. Hill made the catch as both Baddoo and Hill remained on the ground for several minutes before slowly walking off.

A run-scoring single by Grossman against Alexander Wells in the ninth gave the Tigers their final run.

Notes: Santander’s first home run reached Eutaw Street, the third Oriole to hit one there this year, and his second. He has hit five homers onto Eutaw Street, tied for third place with Rafael Palmeiro. … Matt Harvey (6-10, 6.13 ERA) will face Tarik Skubal (7-10, 4.32) on Wednesday night. … The game’s start was delayed by rain for one hour, 54 minutes. … The Orioles have homered in 10 straight home games, their longest single-season streak since a 12-game streak from August 17-September 3, 2016,

Minor league update: ‘Adley Rutschman was 2-for-4 in his first game with Triple-A Norfolk as the Tides defeated Memphis, 4-0.

Rutschman, the overall No. 1 pick in the 2019 draft, grounded out to second and flied to right in his first two at-bats before a run-scoring single in the sixth and a double in the eighth.

Rutschman, who was promoted from Double-A Bowie on Sunday night, scored Norfolk’s fourth run on second baseman Jahmai Jones’ single.

Bruce Zimmermann, who was making his third rehab start, threw five hitless innings, walking two and striking out one.

Kyle Bradish pitched three innings, allowing a single with two outs in the eighth to Alec Burleson.

Felix Bautista pitched a scoreless ninth, but he allowed a walk and hit a batter.

Centerfielder Zach Watson homered twice in Bowie’s 6-3 loss to Richmond. Watson has five home runs.

Kyle Brnovich allowed two runs on five hits in five innings. Tyler Joyner (3-4) allowed three runs in the sixth.

Low-A Delmarva was held to two hits in the Shorebirds’ 5-1 loss to Lynchburg.

Jean Pinto, who was named the Low-A East Pitcher of the Week, allowed one run on five hits in 4 2/3 innings.

High-A Aberdeen’s game with Asheville was suspended with the IronBirds trailing 1-0 after two.

Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB

15 Comments

15 Comments

  1. CalsPals

    August 11, 2021 at 7:50 am

    You see, on a regular basis O pitchers not making 5 innings, at all levels, even low A pitcher of the week, is that part of the process?…go O’s…

    • Nellie

      August 11, 2021 at 8:22 am

      Apparently. Submit that question to Rich. Obviously other organizations have a similar philosophy. Mize couldn’t make 5 for the Tigers last night.

      Diplan and Fry pitched well last night. Funny how that happens when there is little pressure.

    • CalsPals

      August 11, 2021 at 9:14 am

      Just asked a question, thanks for the input…go O’s…

    • CalsPals

      August 11, 2021 at 1:42 pm

      League average 5.1 innings, O’s worste at 4.6…go O’s…

  2. Orial

    August 11, 2021 at 8:21 am

    Can we please put this Akin experiment to bed. Where does Ben get off saying he showed some quality(paraphrase) signs? Ben’s starting to give Mike Bordick a run for his money? There are company men- then there are Ben and Mike. Really sad watching Santander closing the gap,chasing line drives,and turning doubles into triples. I’m sure they’re moving him closer to the line to catch those bloop hits but now he can’t catch up to drives into right center. Time to wrap that experiment up too. What’s the record for giving up HRs in consecutive relief appearences–because Plutko’s gotta be nearing it? Rich appreciate the Minor League updates. They’ve become mandatory reading. Nice to see Adley’s first appearance consist of not only 2 hits for him BUT a one-hitter by his staff. Is it conceivable that even at his young age he could be a difference maker with the pitchers? Nice to wonder. One closing note–Mancini looks gassed.

    • Icterus fan

      August 11, 2021 at 9:45 am

      Bordick struggles to answer a question directly, it seems. He’s so concerned with being friendly and nice and inoffensive that his answers are nothingburgers.

      I’ve heard Ben be critical of player’s performance and Hyde (indirectly) for pulling pitchers instead of letting them burn a little and learn from their mistakes.
      Between Ben and Jim Palmer, I think they provide good in game analysis.

      None of those guys want to bite the hand that feeds them.

      I am real thankful that I don’t have to hear Dave Johnson blathering on incessantly.

  3. Nellie

    August 11, 2021 at 9:35 am

    Spot on Orial. However, don’t lose any sleep over Ben. He does has some interesting and humorous comments from time to time. However, he is a company man and has to toe the company line. I’ll bet he really doesn’t agree with some of the observations he makes. That happens in all walks of life as we see everyday when we pick up the newspaper.

  4. Orioles20

    August 11, 2021 at 9:39 am

    Akin is the pitching version of Stewart. Can’t do anything. He’s just not that good. Move on. With guys like Baumann and Bradish coming it’s time to put up or shut up. And at some point we need to move on from guys that won’t put the work in to get better. Akin needs to go somewhere like driveline and figure it out. Zimmermann and Means have done that. Good to see Santander getting going.

  5. Boog Robinson Robinson

    August 11, 2021 at 12:06 pm

    Speaking of Santander … where have his detractors gone? Nobody is complaining about him lately are they? However I remember his name being bandied about quite often before the trade deadline. Frankly, I believe he’s the best hitter on the team. Mountcastle may have an argument, but I’ll take Santander in this particular moment. He’s an all star caliber player, a keeper and should be extended now.

    And don’t give up on DJ just yet, let the year play out.

    • Icterus fan

      August 11, 2021 at 12:59 pm

      I stated that Santander appeared to be sort of glum and almost disinterested. At times didn’t show much pep in his step. Shots of him in the dugout never really revealed any smiling, high fivin’ type team mate energy, but I guess that’s his personality.
      He shows a lot of upside; too bad about the injuries. Hope he keeps the offensive streak up. We’ll learn more about his potential next year.
      I was never banging the drum for his release, though I figured he might be trade bait.
      Stewart, on the other hand…..

      • Orial

        August 11, 2021 at 1:07 pm

        I somewhat agree about Santander but as far as being best hitter–I think Mullins might have something to say about that. BUT my issue with Santander is his defense. I don’t know if it’s still his ankle(probably is)but he’s awful charging bloop hits and weak at covering hits to the gap(doubles turning into ttiples). I can see why Elias picks OFers in the draft now(Santender,Stewart,Diaz all dropping this year)

  6. Kangaroo Court

    August 11, 2021 at 12:38 pm

    While I agree that Anthony Santander is the best hitter on the team now, I believe that Ryan Mountcastle has a much higher ceiling.
    And while DJ Stewart can be a streaky hitter, he offers very little defensively and will be squeezed out on the 40 man fairly soon. Trey is having his struggles but he was off for a year and it may take more time for his consistency to return. The pitching well it is what it is for now. This seems like a Pitching Audition for 2022 is currently being held. Things will get better, there are some bright spots.

  7. Buzz1979

    August 11, 2021 at 2:25 pm

    Zimmermann should have started last night, he was obviously ready,thanks,Mikey!

    • CalsPals

      August 11, 2021 at 3:37 pm

      So was his catcher…go O’s…

  8. Buzz1979

    August 11, 2021 at 4:08 pm

    Amen!

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