Birds' Eye View: What we saw from Gunnar Henderson and Dean Kremer in Orioles' 6-5 win over Angels - BaltimoreBaseball.com
Rich Dubroff

Birds’ Eye View: What we saw from Gunnar Henderson and Dean Kremer in Orioles’ 6-5 win over Angels

Photo Credit: Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports

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What happened? Gunnar Henderson homered, drove in three runs and made a spectacular play at shortstop, and Dean Kremer equaled his career high with 10 strikeouts in the Orioles’ 6-5 win over the Los Angeles Angels at Angels Stadium in Anaheim, California on Wednesday.

The final out came on a close call that drew a lengthy review. With two outs, the Angels’ Jo Adell walked and tried to steal second. He was thrown out by Orioles catcher James McCann, with Henderson applying the tag, to end the game. Major League Baseball said in a statement the replay official could not definitively determine that Adell touched second before Henderson applied the tag.

With the win, the Orioles (16-8) completed a successful road trip, winning two of three against both the  Kansas City Royals and the Angels.

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Kremer (1-2) allowed two runs on three hits in 5 2/3 innings with a walk. Relying on fastballs and cutters, Kremer’s 10 strikeouts equaled his career high against New York on July 5th, 2023.

While manager Brandon Hyde would have liked a longer start, the Orioles do have a day off on Thursday. Grayson Rodriguez allowed seven runs in 4 1/3 innings in a 7-4 loss on Tuesday night. Rodriguez’s fastballs found too much of the plate, and he hung breaking balls. Kremer did not have that issue.

Henderson homered in the third against Tyler Anderson (2-3).

Adley Rutschman, who had his 12th multi-hit game, had two hits. His RBI single in the fifth made it 2-0.

The Orioles scored four in the sixth on Jorge Mateo’s RBI ground-rule double, a two-run single by Henderson, who scored on a  double-play grounder by Ryan Mountcastle.

Kremer, who allowed one hit through five innings, threw 101 pitches, and was removed after Mike Trout homered and Nolan Schanuel singled.

Taylor Ward hit a two-run home run on reliever Jacob Webb’s first pitch to cut the lead to 6-3, and allowing an inherited runner to score.

Zach Neto homered against Yennier Cano in the eighth to reduce the Orioles’ lead to 6-4.

Henderson made a terrific play on Ward’s grounder to end the eighth, throwing from short left field to first.

Ehire Adrianza began the ninth against closer Craig Kimbrel by reaching third after Mateo’s throwing error on his infield hit. He scored on Logan O’Hoppe’s groundout. After Matt Thaiss struck out, Adell walked to set up the controversial ending.

What’s going on with the starting rotation? John Means’ rehab assignment is about to end, and while he could make another start for Triple-A Norfolk on Sunday, he could start for the Orioles instead, manager Brandon Hyde indicated to reporters in Anaheim.

Albert Suárez is listed as the probable on Sunday, and when Means comes off the injured list, an alteration to the rotation is coming. It will be fascinating to see who leaves.

Suárez has had two impressive starts, and Cole Irvin, who is scheduled to pitch on Saturday, had his best start as an Oriole last Saturday in Kansas City when he threw 6 2/3 scoreless innings.

What was the key play? Trailing by a run with two outs in the bottom of the ninth, Adell walked and tried to put himself in scoring position by stealing second. McCann’s throw and Henderson’s tag got the out call. After a lengthy review, and some replays that seemed to indicate Adell was safe, the call stood, and the Orioles had their win.

What does it mean? The Orioles continue to win consistently. By winning four of six on the road, they move to eight games above .500. After Oakland, the Orioles will have an early test with four games against the Yankees, with whom they’re battling for first place in the American League East.

Stat of the day I: Kimbrel’s save was the 424th of his career, tying him with John Franco for sixth place on the all-time saves list. On Monday night, Kimbrel passed Billy Wagner for seventh place with his 423rd save.

Stat of the day II: Oriole pitchers struck out 16 Angels, two shy of the team record for a nine-inning game.

What’s next? After a day off on Thursday, the Orioles will begin a three-game series with the Oakland Athletics on Friday night at 7:05. Corbin Burnes (3-0, 2.76) will face Ross Stripling (0-5, 5.34).

Transaction: Outfielder Peyton Burdick, who was designated for assignment on Monday, was claimed off waivers by Cincinnati. It’s the second time this year that Burdick was lost on a waiver claim. In February, he was claimed by the Chicago White Sox and reclaimed by the Orioles in March.

Call for questions: I’ll be answering at least one question every weekday. Send yours to: [email protected]

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