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BALTIMORE—Before Tuesday night’s game, Orioles manager Brandon Hyde was marveling at how many close games his team had played. Only one game, their 7-2 win over Texas on April 4th, had been decided by five or more runs.
For most of the game, the Orioles seem destined to lose by their most lopsided margin of the season, but they scored five runs in the bottom of the ninth in a game they trailed 8-1 heading into the inning
Starter Kyle Bradish equaled a career high by allowing seven runs in just 2 1/3 innings as the Orioles’ seven-game winning streak ended in an 8-6 loss to the Boston Red Sox before an announced crowd of 14,343 at Camden Yards.
Bradish (1-1), who left his first start on April 3rd in Texas in the second inning with a bruised right foot, missed 15 days while he was on the injured list and returned April 19th with six scoreless innings against Washington.
“I thought early command wasn’t quite there,” Hyde said. “They did a great job of spoiling a bunch of pitches, putting balls in play that were off the plate. I thought the stuff was there. I didn’t think the command was his best tonight. A couple of really long innings.”
Bradish allowed eight hits, seven singles and Jarren Duran’s grand slam in the third inning. Bradish threw 81 pitches and allowed 12 of his 18 batters to reach. He also walked four.
“I think the second inning had some tough luck,” Bradish said. “Not any ball hit hard and they came out swinging again [in] the third inning. Just threw a not really competitive fastball to Duran and he really handled it.”
Bradish, who allowed seven runs against the Red Sox on September 27th, 2022 at Fenway Park, is now 0-8 with a 7.91 ERA in 15 starts against the American League East.
“Fastball command just wasn’t there, and I wasn’t making quality pitches putting guys away,” Bradish. “Pregame bullpen, my fastball was really good and then when I got out there, just kind of lost it. I needed to find another pitch to throw for strikes. Didn’t really do that. That’s something we work on between starts.”
The Orioles (15-8) had one run, a home run by shortstop Jorge Mateo in the fifth, and five hits against Boston starter Corey Kluber (1-4), who worked six innings.
In the ninth, Gunnar Henderson led off with his second home run, and Cedric Mullins hit a grand slam with one out against Kaleb Ort to close the gap to 8-6. Boston (13-12) needed Kenley Jansen to record the final two outs.
“That was huge for us to show where we are as an offense,” Mullins said. “To be able to continue to chip away in a game that kind of seemed lost. Next thing we know, we’re back in the fight, a couple of hits away from tying it or taking the lead.”
Austin Hays left the game with a bruised right hand after his third inning at-bat when he unsuccessfully tried to bunt before flying out to right. X-rays were negative for a fracture, and Hays undergo further evaluation.
“We caught a break there with the X-rays being negative,” Hyde said. “That’s great news. It’s day-to-day. It’s obviously really sore. We got lucky.”
Mike Baumann pitched 2 2/3 innings in relief of Bradish. Austin Voth allowed a run in the eighth inning. Cionel Pérez pitched a scoreless ninth before the Orioles staged their late rally.
“When we’re playing our best ball, a lot of good things going our way, we’re able to put a lot of wins on the board consecutively,” Mullins said. “That’s always a big thing to be able to do that. Having that creates confidence among the clubhouse and continue to move forward even after this loss.”
Notes: According to OptaStats, the grand slams by Duran and Mullins were the first time in major league history that opposing centerfielders hit grand slams. … Hyde dismissed any talk of a disagreement with Boston manager Alex Cora. Before the game, he said Cora had been disrespectful toward Oriole hitters for inferring they’d taken advantage of tipped pitches against Chris Sale on Monday night. “We’ve already talked about it at this point,” Hyde said. “We talked about it and good to go.” … The Orioles conclude their homestand with Tyler Wells (0-1, 2.70) facing Tanner Houck (3-0, 4.29) at 1:05 p.m.
Minor league update: Third baseman Jordan Westburg hit a grand slam and centerfielder Colton Cowser hit a two-run home run in Triple-A Norfolk’s 9-5 over Charlotte.
Second baseman César Prieto and leftfielder John Rhodes had two hits as Double-A Bowie lost to Richmond, 4-2.
Dillon Tate, who’s on the 15-day injured list with a forearm injury, allowed a run on two hits in an inning in his first rehab appearance in High-A Aberdeen’s 7-3 loss to Wilmington. Tate struck out two.
In his first game for the IronBirds, shortstop Jackson Holliday was hitless in three at-bats with two walks.
Juan Nunez pitched five scoreless innings, allowing just one hit and striking out seven and walking three, in Single-A Delmarva’s 5-0 loss to Salem. The Shorebirds had just five hits.
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