BALTIMORE—The Orioles were within a strike of recording their third straight shutout and extending their scoreless streak to 35 innings. Instead of Félix Bautista recording his second save, he picked up an unwanted win as he gave up a game-tying single to Javier Baez and then watched the Orioles piece together a run in the bottom of the ninth for a 2-1 win over the Detroit Tigers.
The win before an announced crowd of 18,772 at Oriole Park on Friday was the fourth straight for the Orioles (12-7).
In the bottom of the ninth, Ryan Mountcastle singled against Jason Foley (0-1) with one out, advanced to third on Anthony Santander’s single and scored when Adam Frazier grounded to Detroit first baseman Spencer Torkelson, whose throw home was wide.
“I made sure [Frazier] hit it on the ground. Right off the bat I took off,” Mountcastle said. “I got a pretty good lead, pretty good jump.”
Austin Hays’ fourth home run gave the Orioles a 1-0 lead in the seventh. Tyler Wells thew a career-high seven innings, allowing just three hits and a walk. Bryan Baker threw a 1-2-3 eighth and Bautista (2-1) nearly had the game sealed.
“We can score and we have confidence in our offense,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “It’s not going to be the last run that Félix Bautista gives up this year. He’s going to give up runs and those things happen.”
Detroit’s Akil Baddoo led off the ninth with a single, and with two outs and a 2-2 count on Baez, he singled to left to tie the score at 1, and ended the Orioles’ scoreless streak at 34 innings, sixth longest in franchise history, and longest in the American League since the Orioles’ 45-inning streak to end the 1995 season.
“The last three starts have been amazing,” Hyde said.
Wells had thrown six innings in six starts over the last two seasons, and when he finished the seventh, he pounded his glove in delight.
“It’s definitely nice this year being able to let him go pitch,” Hyde said. “This year, the leash is longer. It’s fun to watch him go out there and go as long as he can.”
After Grayson Rodriguez allowed four runs in the first inning on Sunday in Chicago, the Orioles shut the White Sox out in the remaining eight innings in an 8-4 win. Dean Kremer threw 6 2/3 innings and Kyle Bradish threw six in 1-0 and 4-0 wins over the Nationals on Tuesday and Wednesday night.
“It’s motivating. Dean and Bradish did a great job the last two nights, and [Kyle Gibson] has been doing a great job all year,” Wells said. “We sit there and constantly push each other. Whether that’s in bullpens, whether that’s in catchplay. I was out the other day watching Grayson throw his bullpen and Gibby’s sitting there talking to him.
“”Hey, what are we trying to execute?’ We’re always trying to feed off each other, learn and apply that into the games, and so far that’s worked out for all of us.”
The lengthier starts are helping their teammates, too.
“They’re pitching their butts off and it’s a lot more enjoyable to play behind them when guys are throwing really well like that,” Mountcastle said. “Hopefully we can keep it going and get some more wins.”
The Orioles have won eight of 10 against Oakland, the White Sox, Washington and Detroit.
“We have to be able to win in different ways for sure, and we won some games early in the year by outslugging,” Hyde said. “The last three games we won because we pitched extremely well. Those are fun games.”
Note: Kyle Gibson (3-0, 4.18) will face Joey Wentz (0-2, 6.39) on Saturday night.
Minor league update: DL Hall allowed two runs on five hits in five innings in Triple-A Norfolk’s 3-2 win over Rochester. Hall threw 85 pitches, striking out five and walking two.
Logan Gillaspie (1-0) pitched a perfect eighth in his first appearance since being optioned to Norfolk on Wednesday. Centerfielder Daz Cameron hit his second home run.
Cade Povich (1-1) allowed five runs in four innings as Double-A Bowie lost to Altoona, 8-1.
Second baseman Luis Valdez had three hits and drove in two runs in High-A Aberdeen’s 4-3 loss to Jersey Shore.
Trace Bright (0-1) allowed four runs, two unearned, and recorded just two outs in the first inning.
Shortstop Jackson Holliday hit two home runs, a three-run homer and a solo shot, as Single-A Delmarva beat Fredericksburg, 10-4. Holliday raised his average to .404 and his OPS to 1.214
Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB