Orioles' late rally falls short in loss to Blue Jays - BaltimoreBaseball.com

Rich Dubroff

Orioles’ late rally falls short in loss to Blue Jays

Photo credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA Today Sports

After winning two of three against the Boston Red Sox, damaging their wild-card hopes, the Orioles hoped to do the same against another wild-card hopeful, the Toronto Blue Jays.

After starting three rookie left-handers, Bruce Zimmermann, Zac Lowther and Alexander Wells, and getting three good starts, manager Brandon Hyde started Thomas Eshelman.

Eshelman was chosen to start because Chris Ellis’ season has ended with right shoulder inflammation, and Hyde had few other options.

Toronto scored two runs against Eshelman (0-3) and four against Brooks Kriske in the sixth and then held on for a 6-4 win over the Orioles in the first of the final three-game series of the season.

The Blue Jays (89-71) are in a four-way race with the New York Yankees, Red Sox and Seattle Mariners for the two wild-card spots.

Catcher Danny Jansen’s 10th home run against Eshelman gave Toronto a 2-0 lead in the third. Jansen has three homers and 10 RBIs against the Orioles this season. He has seven homers and 16 RBIs against other teams.

Eshelman was followed by Connor Greene, Fernando Abad, Kriske, Isaac Mattson and Marcos Díplan for the Orioles (52-108).

“As an opener, you just try to go as long as you can and see where it takes you and keep the team in the game,” Eshelman said. “Left one pitch over the middle of the plate and got hit out of the ballpark, but other than that I felt pretty good with my performance.”

Corey Dickerson hit his sixth home run against Kriske. Jansen’s RBI double, Cavan Biggio’s run-scoring single and George Springer’s infield single that enabled Biggio to score from second gave Toronto a 6-0 lead.


Steven Matz (14-7) pitched seven shutout innings and left after third baseman Kelvin Gutiérrez hit his third home run and Tyler Nevin walked in the eighth.

“I thought he was really good tonight,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “That was the best I’ve seen him throw in a long time.”

Pat Valaika hit his sixth home run against Adam Cimber and, with one out, Cimber hit Cedric Mullins with a pitch. Ryan Mountcastle singled, and Toronto closer Jordan Romano replaced Cimber.

Austin Hays hit into a force play, with Mullins taking third. Trey Mancini singled to right, scoring Mullins, and cutting Toronto’s lead to 6-4.

“Really happy with our eighth inning,” Hyde said. “They had to bring their closer in with one out in the eighth.”

Hays advanced to third and Mancini to second on a wild pitch by Romano, and Pedro Severino walked to load the bases. Gutiérrez grounded into a force play to end the inning.

“We were one hit away from making it real interesting,” Hyde said.

In the fifth inning, Hays threw out Biggio at the plate, a call that was reversed after a challenge by Hyde.

“It’s a really positive environment for us to play in,” Hays said. “The goal is for us in the next couple of years to be on the other side of this and be in the situation those guys over there are in right now.

“We’re trying to continue to play the game hard and play the game the right way and treat every game like it matters and just keep battling like we tried to battle our way back into that game tonight. We had a chance.”

Romano struck out Nevin, Valaika and Ryan McKenna in the ninth for his 23rd save, and the Blue Jays had a crucial win at Rogers Centre.

“This is what it’s about,” Hyde said. ”Our guys haven’t had a whole lot of experiences in this type of environment. It’s loud in here. The fans are into it. We’re getting booed a little bit. This is what makes major league baseball fun, playing the games that matter in hostile environments on the road, playing against teams, must-win type of games. This is what competitors live for. It’s a lot of fun. I’m happy our guys got to experience it.”

Notes: Gutiérrez is hitting .414 (12-for-29) in his last nine games. … Severino extended his hitting streak to 10 games. … Hays had two hits, running his on-base streak to 18 games, longest in the American League. … John Means (6-8, 3.32 ERA) will face Alek Manoah (8-2, 3.35) on Saturday at 3:07 p.m. … Kyle Bradish allowed a run on four hits in five innings as Triple-A Norfolk lost to Durham, 2-1. Adley Rutschman threw out two runners attempting to steal. The Tides had just four hits.

Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB



  1. Bhoffman1

    October 2, 2021 at 7:41 am

    Rich I asked you this the other day do you think Gutierrez can be a player. He has the body and charisma and now he’s hitting. Along with Mateo they could be real finds by Elias. The other guy Jones is completely overmatched at the plate. Looks awful. Is Diaz finished as an Oriole or do they give him another year in the minors. What a disappointment

    • Rich Dubroff

      October 2, 2021 at 8:55 am

      I think Gutierrez will be on the team over the winter, Bruce and has a chance to be the third baseman until Jordan Westburg or Gunnar Henderson arrive, perhaps later in 2022.

      I think Diaz gets one more year to try to prove himself.

  2. Orial

    October 2, 2021 at 8:03 am

    Thinking Guttierrez has to be the front runner for 3B going into spring training(barring a trade or FA signing). Urias/Mateo up the middle(wouldn’t be against a FA defensive whiz at SS though–Simmons?). Thought Kriske had some nice movement/sharpness until….he didn’t. Geesh–from Koufax to Spenser Watkins in a matter of 6 batters. Come on Cedric hold on–would hate to see you fall below .290. I watch the Jays CATCHER,the CATCHER I repeat,score from 2nd on a single to left and think to myself that I never see any Oriole score from 2nd on a single to left. That is just a small sample of what has to change. Come on O’s you’re in the playoff battle–make a difference for somebody.

    • HmmmImNotSoSureAboutThat

      October 2, 2021 at 9:34 am

      Orioles take an extra base 39% of the time, league average is 40%. O’s have scored from 2nd on a single 96 times out of 146 chances, gotta believe one of those 96 times was on a single to left – maybe you weren’t watching then? Jansen doesn’t run too poorly for a CATCHER and Nevin was in LF, he primarily has played 1B and 3B throughout his professional career. The O’s took 2 out of 3 from Boston, making a difference…

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        October 2, 2021 at 10:23 am

        You know,I’ll admit, as big a jerk as you are, coming up with those kinds of numbers is pretty impressive. May I ask what database is your source? (or is that a trade secret?)

  3. Boog Robinson Robinson

    October 2, 2021 at 9:48 am

    You know in my 53 years of following the O’s, the last 30 some odd of which I could watch just about every game on TV, I’ve never said “the hell with it” the last few weeks of the season. No matter how bad times were. Baseball for me, ended after 162, not August. Now I’m not going to sit here and tell you that I haven’t been ‘checking in’ these past 2 or 3 weeks, but I have said to hell with it. And I bet I’m not alone.

    Somebody might want to tell Elias and the Angelos brothers about this.

    Go Cowboys….and continue to drink Pepsi!

    • Baltimore Castaway

      October 2, 2021 at 10:19 am


      You are pointing to a real risk for the Orioles w this rebuild… what happens after they roll out the future Stars of the team and no one comes out to see them play because the Orioles have lost their fanbase here? It could actually happen.. I think we know what happens after that. Very scary..

      The Angelos Family has always seemed to take the Fans for granted.

  4. CalsPals

    October 2, 2021 at 3:33 pm

    Again, let me say I like Means, he is most likely the O’s best pitcher, but three runs in first shows a pattern I’d be concerned about…go O’s…

    • CalsPals

      October 2, 2021 at 3:38 pm

      AND 3 runs in the second, concerning…go O’s…

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        October 2, 2021 at 3:56 pm

        Going for the trifecta ?

    • CalsPals

      October 2, 2021 at 4:04 pm

      Hope not, but you never know…go O’s…

    • CalsPals

      October 2, 2021 at 4:23 pm

      Yikes, nope just 1…go O’s…

  5. Bhoffman1

    October 2, 2021 at 5:32 pm

    Watching Kevin Gausman pitch for SF I still say DD and Buck ruined him with all that initial back and forth to Norfolk. Maybe it was our whole coaching system . You just don’t let guys like that go.

    • dlgruber1

      October 2, 2021 at 7:08 pm

      White I of course agree with your comment the problems with Orioles pitching unfortunately goes way beyond Buck and DD. I still maintain the biggest problem is OPACY. I hate saying that because I love it but the lack of success in pitching, specifically starting pitching goes back as far as when it opened. Mussina was the last truly great pitcher they “developed”. I put that in parentheses because I think Moose was just simply that great and that they didn’t need to “develop” him. Hopefully GR will be the next Moose.

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        October 2, 2021 at 8:34 pm

        Spot on Dave.

  6. Bhoffman1

    October 2, 2021 at 5:34 pm

    John Means ended his season on a major down note. He’s not a number one guy more like three maybe two at best

    • Rich Dubroff

      October 2, 2021 at 7:11 pm

      Bruce, he’s one of the top pitchers in the American League.

    • CalsPals

      October 2, 2021 at 7:57 pm

      5.31 Era since AS game…nice guy…struggling since his injury, maybe he’s not healthy, still, since AS break not one of the top pitchers in AL….go O’s…

  7. Bhoffman1

    October 2, 2021 at 5:35 pm

    I’d like to see Stowers make the jump
    next year here over DJ Steward.

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