BALTIMORE—In two starts with the Orioles, left-hander Cole Irvin has allowed nine runs on 12 hits in 8 2/3 innings, and his new team has lost both games.
Irvin, who was obtained from the Oakland Athletics in late January to solidify the rotation, has struggled in his two games against the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees.
On Saturday night, Irvin tied his career high with four walks. Two of the four batters he walked scored as the Yankees defeated the Orioles, 4-1, before an announced crowd of 30,561 at Camden Yards.
Irvin (0-2) has a 9.35 earned-run average. After two walks in the fourth, Aaron Hicks hit an RBI single. In the fifth, Anthony Volpe tripled and DJ LeMahieu doubled. LeMahieu moved to third on a wild pitch by Irvin and scored on a sacrifice fly by Aaron Judge. Irvin’s 101st and final pitch was an Anthony Rizzo grounder to first.
“I thought he had a little bit better command than he did last start,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “Even though there were four walks, there were a lot of foul balls in there.”
Giancarlo Stanton, Austin Voth’s first hitter, blasted a 436-foot home run to left-center, and New York (5-3) led, 4-1.
“I’m definitely not happy with the walks, and that definitely cost us an extra inning out of the bullpen,” Irvin said. “I pride myself in getting deep in the ballgames and giving the bullpen a day off, so I just didn’t do enough today to allow them to rest a little bit more. Walks and deep counts, I wasn’t getting ahead of guys.
“I thought my stuff was really good. I’m making some adjustments since the last start and feel like I’m moving in the right direction. Not getting ahead and walking too many guys right now. That will change.”
Irvin has averaged just over two walks per nine innings in his major league career, and this was just the third time he’d walked four in a game.
“There are not necessarily issues. I’m missing by miniscule [amounts] left and right,” Irvin said. “Up and down, I’m not missing by much. It’s not like I’m airmailing or throwing balls in the dirt very often. It’s just an adjustment. It’s part of my job to throw strikes and get outs. I didn’t throw enough strikes. But at the end of the day, I know there was some success that I need to look at and build on.”
Johny Brito (2-0) allowed one run on three hits in five innings in his second major league start. The Orioles (4-4) scored their only run in the first on singles by Cedric Mullins and Adley Rutschman and a sacrifice fly by Anthony Santander.
“Bottom line tonight was we didn’t have a whole lot of offense,” Hyde said. “We had one run on four hits. We really didn’t give ourselves a chance offensively.”
Brito allowed a leadoff single to Ramón Urías in the fifth, and Michael King a one-out single to Adam Frazier in the seventh.
Terrin Vavra, who started in right field, was called out on strikes against Brito in the fifth in a 12-pitch at-bat, longest in his career.
“He’s got good stuff and he was locating. He did a little reverse counts and missing barrels and ultimately it worked out,” Vavra said.
Rutschman walked twice, once against Wandy Peralta in the eighth. Kyle Stowers walked against Clay Holmes in the ninth and advanced to second on a wild pitch.
“They’re two good lineups,” Irvin said of the Red Sox and Yankees. “I knew I had to come ready today. I most certainly did. I thought my focus, my preparation, everything was spot on, where it needed to be, but again, too many pitches, some long [at-bats], and some walks dictated that outing and a couple of bad pitches later in the start. I’ll make the adjustments, and we’ll be in a better spot.”
Notes: The Orioles activated catcher James McCann from the 10-day injured list. He’d been on the injured list with a strained left oblique. After Saturday night’s game, they optioned outfielder Kyle Stowers to Triple-A N0rfolk. Stowers was hitless in four at-bats. …Urias received his Gold Glove award for top fielding American League third baseman before the game. Hyde was honored for his Baseball America MLB Manager of the Year and his Sporting News American League Manager of the Year award. … Tyler Wells (0-0, .000) will face Nestor Cortes (1-0, 1.80) on Sunday at 1:35 p.m.
Minor league update: Norfolk scored 11 runs in the sixth on the way to a 21-2 win over Gwinnett. Second baseman Connor Norby drove in four, designated hitter Hudson Haskin and catcher Maverick Handley each drove in three runs. Spenser Watkins (2-0) allowed an unearned run on four hits in five innings. The Tides tied their franchise report for most runs in a game and inning.
McCann went 2-for-3 and caught all seven innings as High-A Aberdeen beat Wilmington, 8-2. in the first game of a doubleheader. Centerfielder Jud Fabian hit a two-run home run. McCann was in the second game of a rehab assignment.
Wilmington scored four runs in the eighth to beat the IronBirds, 8-4, in the second game.
Single-A Delmarva was held to four hits in its 10-2 loss to Salem.
Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB