Birds' Eye View: What we saw in Orioles' wild 9-7 win over Royals -

Birds’ Eye View: What we saw in Orioles’ wild 9-7 win over Royals

Photo Credit: Tommy Gilligan USA TODAY Sports


What happened? The Orioles scored seven runs in the second inning and survived a late Kansas City Royals rally to hang on for a 9-7 win at Kauffman Stadium on Saturday night.

The Orioles sent 12 batters to the plate in the second and produced six two-strike hits. Jordan Westburg started the rally with a single and capped it with a two-run single to give the Orioles a 7-0 lead.

Ramón Urías had a run-scoring double, his first RBI of the season. James McCann, Adley Rutschman, Ryan Mountcastle and Anthony Santander also had RBIs.

Santander had a career-high three doubles. His third double gave the Orioles the 9-7 lead in the eighth. Austin Hays scored on a passed ball by Salvador Perez in the seventh.

The Orioles tied their season high with 15 hits and were 7-for-16 with runners in scoring position.

Though they scored nine runs, they didn’t homer for the first time in 10 games.

Perez drove in five runs on a three-run home run and a two-run single.

The Orioles are 13-7, their best 20-game start since 2017 when they were 14-6. They trail New York by a half-game in the AL East.

How good was Corbin Burnes? Burnes was excellent for five innings but allowed a three-run home run to Perez in the sixth. Burnes (3-0) allowed three runs on four hits in 5 2/3 innings, walking one and striking out four, throwing 98 pitches.

The three-run home run was the first given up by Burnes since September 19th, 2022.

How was the bullpen? Fortunately, the Orioles have Craig Kimbrel, who retired the side in the ninth for his 422nd save, tying him with Billy Wagner for seventh place on the all-time saves list. John Franco, who has 424, is in sixth place.

Kimbrel was needed because Yohan Ramírez contributed to a sloppy seventh inning when four runs scored, narrowing the Orioles lead to 8-7.

Ramírez allowed two runs while Danny Coulombe and Yennier Cano were each charged with one.

After Keegan Akin gave up a double to Dairon Blanco in the eighth, Mike Baumann retired Maikel Garcia on a grounder to first to end the eighth.

What was the key play? Santander made a diving catch on Royals leadoff batter Bobby Witt Jr. in the top of the ninth. Had the ball skipped past the rightfielder, Witt would have had an extra-base hit. At the least, it would have brought the tying run to the plate.

Misplays? It seemed surprising when the Orioles acquired Ramírez as an extra bullpen piece. He’s had an erratic career, and he had a rocky appearance in the seventh, walking one, hitting a batter and throwing two wild pitches in the four-run seventh inning that allowed the Royals to cut the lead to 8-7.

Ramírez was fortunate that Colton Cowser, who replaced Austin Hays in left field, threw out Kyle Isbel at third base. Manager Brandon Hyde told reporters after the game that Hays had calf tightness.

The Orioles don’t have a lot of appealing right-handed relievers at Triple-A Norfolk. Bryan Baker, who spent most of the last two seasons with the Orioles and is on the 40-man roster, pitched a scoreless inning on Saturday night, but has a 12.79 ERA. Kaleb Ort, who’s also on the 40-man roster, has a 9.00 ERA. Wandisson Charles, who’s not on the 40-man roster, has held opponents to a .185 average, but he has walked three batters in 7 1/3 innings.

What does it mean? The Orioles have avoided being swept in 98 consecutive regular-season series, the fourth longest in major league history.

What’s the stat of the day? 11.00. That’s Ramírez’s ERA in three games. He had an 11.81 ERA in three games with the Mets before he was designated for assignment.

What’s going on in the minor leagues? Third baseman Coby Mayo homered twice and drove in six runs to lead Norfolk over Jacksonville, 11-6.  Mayo has seven homers.

Second baseman Connor Norby had three hits, including a two-run home run, his fifth. Centerfielder Daniel Johnson hit his first.

Nick Vespi allowed one hit in 2 1/3 innings in relief of Justin Armbruester for the win.

Centerfielder Jud Fabian hit a grand slam in the bottom of the ninth to give Double-A Bowie a 6-2 win over Altoona. Shortstop Frederick Bencosme hit a two-run home run.

Starter Trace Bright allowed a run on nine hits in five innings.

High-A Aberdeen starter Moisés Chace walked six batters in just three innings in the IronBirds’ 4-3 loss to Hudson Valley.

Third baseman Mac Horvath hit his first home run, and leftfielder Enrique Bradfield Jr. was removed from the game after he was tagged in the head sliding into home.

Michael Forret and Riley Cooper combined on a four-hit shutout as Single-A Delmarva beat Down East, 6-0. Forret allowed three hits and struck out eight in five innings while Cooper allowed one hit and struck out four in four innings.

Catcher Cole Urman hit a two-run home run.

On Friday, the Orioles outrighted catcher Daniel Bañuelos to Norfolk after he passed through waivers. Infielder Liván Soto, who was claimed twice by the Orioles this off waivers from Los Angeles, was claimed by Cincinnati.

What’s next? Cole Irvin (0-1, 6.75) will face Seth Lugo (3-0, 1.75) on Sunday at 2:10 p.m. as the Orioles try for a series win.

Call for questions: Each weekday, I’ll be answering at least one Orioles’ question. Please send yours to: [email protected]

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