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PHILADELPHIA—The Orioles had won their last six one-run games, and they led, 3-2, entering the bottom of the ninth against the Philadelphia Phillies.
Reliever Shintaro Fujinami retired each of his six batters, and with closer Félix Bautista unavailable, Yennier Cano started the ninth.
Bryce Harper singled with one out. Nick Castellanos struck out, and Bryson Stott’s double tied it. J.T. Realmuto’s infield single on a double clutch by shortstop Jorge Mateo sent Stott to third, and Alec Bohm’s single to left gave the Phillies a 4-3 win before an announced crowd of 37,200 at Citizens Bank Park on Tuesday night.
The win broke the Orioles’ three-game winning streak and with Tampa Bay’s 4-1 win over Miami cut their lead in the American League East to 1 ½ games.
“If we continue to play one-run games, we’re going to lose some,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “You just can’t be perfect every night out of the bullpen.”
Fujinami retired the side in the seventh and eighth, striking out three, setting up Cano.
“Fujinami was fantastic. On a night we were really short in the ‘pen, he gave us two unbelievable innings … great fastball, great split,” Hyde said. “Before the game, we made the decision that Bautista was going to be down tonight.”
Cano (1-2) was an out away from his fifth save.
“It was difficult because I couldn’t get the three outs,” Cano said through a translator. “I can’t blame it on those two hits that snuck through. I allowed a couple of hits before that as well. It was just a bad outing overall on my end. There’s no one to put blame on but myself, and unfortunately things didn’t go my way tonight.”
If Bautista had been available, Cano wouldn’t have been in for the ninth.
“I think it’s no secret that it’s a difficult inning to pitch in,” Cano said. “There’s a bit of a different feeling when you go out there. At the end of the day, you have to go out there and get the job done, and unfortunately, I didn’t do that tonight. I’m also human. I make mistakes, and unfortunately, I didn’t get the job done tonight.”
Shortstop Gunnar Henderson left the game in the bottom of the eighth inning because of lower back discomfort and was replaced by Mateo. Henderson also missed two games with the back injury last month when the Orioles were in San Francisco and Milwaukee.
“He’ll be checked out. I expect him to be fine. It might be a couple of days. We’ll see,” Hyde said.
The Orioles (62-39) scored in the first when Austin Hays’ double drove in Ryan Mountcastle. They loaded the bases when Colton Cowser walked but failed to add runs.
“We had bases loaded, nobody out early in the game. We had chances to add on and didn’t do it,” Hyde said. “We had opportunities early to score. You let a team off the hook like that, it’s not the recipe for success. Just tough to win the games we’ve been winning lately.”
Mountcastle scored again in the third. He singled with two outs, and Adam Frazier’s double brought him home. Frazier was out trying for a triple.
Johan Rojas’ single against Oriole starter Kyle Gibson scored Bohm in the bottom of the third inning. After Rojas’ single, Gibson retired 11 straight until Bryce Harper homered to right-center to tie the score at 2.
Gibson, who was a member of the Phillies’ National League champions last season, allowed two runs on four hits in six innings. He struck out five.
“It’s always different facing a lot of guys when they know you really well and you know them really well,” Gibson said.
Ryan O’Hearn homered in the top of the eighth, his ninth, to give the Orioles a 3-2 lead. That created a save situation for Cano when he pitched the ninth.
“At the end of the day, it’s all the same,” he said. “You have to go out there and do your job. You have to concentrate and focus and get the job done.
Notes: Mountcastle reached base in all four of his plate appearances for the third time in his career and the first time since June 19th, 2021. … Kyle Bradish (6-6, 3.05) will face the Phillies’ Ranger Suárez (2-5, 4.07) at 6:05 p.m. on Wednesday in the final game of the series.
Minor league update: Third baseman Coby Mayo drove in four runs and hit a home run, and shortstop Joey Ortiz had four hits and drove in two as Triple-A Norfolk lost to Nashville, 10-8.
Luis De Léon (1-0) pitched five no-hit innings in relief as Single-A Delmarva beat Kannapolis, 5-1.
High-A Aberdeen’s game at Jersey Shore was postponed by rain.
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