Orioles leave Yankee Stadium after a big offensive day and a bigger series win - BaltimoreBaseball.com
Rich Dubroff

Orioles leave Yankee Stadium after a big offensive day and a bigger series win

Photo Credit: John Jones USA TODAY Sports

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NEW YORK—What happened? After scoring 17 runs on 19 hits, the Orioles left Yankee Stadium with two wins in three games and just a half-game behind the Yankees in the American League East.

The Orioles’ 17-5 win over the Yankees on Thursday afternoon came after a gritty 7-6 win in 10 innings on Wednesday. The Yankees won the opening game of the series, 4-2.

First baseman Ryan Mountcastle and designated hitter Ryan O’Hearn each drove in four runs. Anthony Santander hit a three-run homer, and centerfielder Cedric Mullins hit a two-run home run.

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“The way we came out and swung the bat today was incredible,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “So many hard-hit balls early, just really, really good at-bats. I don’t know what kind a statement we’re making. I just think we’re a good team. Our record shows it, the way we’ve been playing against our division.”

It was the 22nd consecutive series the Orioles have played against an American League East team without losing one, the longest streak since division play began in 1969. The Orioles are 19-7 against the AL East this season.

“We want to win those close games,” shortstop Gunnar Henderson said. “Whenever you have a game like this, you enjoy them a lot. We really enjoyed having that many runs up on the board today.”

Henderson was 3-for-5 and has hit in a career-high 13 straight games and reached base in 27 straight.

Despite being given a huge lead, Oriole starter Cole Irvin was pulled after 4 2/3 innings, allowing five runs on five hits.

The Orioles move on to Houston for three games against the Astros.

How impressive was the offense? Luis Gil, a top contender for American League Rookie of the Year, had the worst start of his career, allowing seven runs on eight hits in 1 1/3 innings.

“He has great stuff. We knew that,” O’Hearn said. “We just had a good gameplan going in, trying to make sure we got him in the zone. Low line drives and passing the bat to the next guy, not trying to hit home runs, just trying to keep the line moving-type deal.”

Hyde was impressed with the Orioles’ approach against Gil, who allowed just two hits against them on May 1st in 6 1/3 scoreless innings.

“I don’t think his command was as good as it was before,” Hyde said. “We were on his fastball, and we did a nice job taking pitches off the plate. We were on time.”

The Orioles have won two of three in consecutive series against two top teams, the Phillies and Yankees.

“I don’t know if we thought we had to show up and prove anything,” O’Hearn said. “We know we’re in a tough stretch with not many offdays, playing really good teams. We know we had to show up and play. I believe we can play with anybody in this league, obviously. We showed that today.”

O’Hearn has hit brilliantly this month and against the Yankees the last two years. He’s batting .372 in his last 11 games against them.

“I see the ball really well here,” O’Hearn said. “As much as the short porch is hard to ignore, I try to tell myself it’s not there until the ball’s in the air.

“It seems to be always a dogfight against these guys. Trying to win the division. I don’t know what it is. It’s definitely fun to win here.”

Even though Irvin was disappointed he couldn’t make it through five innings, he was excited about the Orioles’ bats.

“Great offense today,” Irvin said. “It was a lot of fun to watch our offense go. It made it a little tough in between innings to stay hot and ready. Taking two out of three against a good ballclub … we’re focused on winning every night and every ballgame that we can.”

Why couldn’t Irvin go longer? With an eight-run lead entering the fifth, Irvin was unhappy he couldn’t go longer.

“One hundred percent. I had one of those days where I didn’t feel my best. I didn’t feel like I had my stuff,” Irvin said. “One of those days I should have gotten deeper. I’m disappointed in myself and my effort tonight. Bullpen definitely could have used a little rest. They picked me up. The offense picked me up.”

Hyde was hoping for more.

“I thought he started off well,” Hyde said. “The two-out traffic after getting two quick outs … that was disappointing,  The third time through the order with the big boys coming up in the fifth with a lead ended his day.”

What’s the word? “We’ve got good hitters that know how to control the zone. Obviously very motivated to take a rubber match against a good team. We’re chasing them down in this division. I think guys came in locked in and ready to go today.”-O’Hearn on the Orioles’ offense.

What does it mean? Taking two of three from the Yankees in a series in which the Orioles faced Nestor Cortes, Gerrit Cole and Gil is a huge accomplishment, particularly after winning two of three against the Phillies.

What’s the stat of the day? 19. The Orioles have homered in 19 straight games, one away from the franchise high, set from July 17th, 1998-August 9th, 1998.

What’s next? Grayson Rodriguez (8-2, 3.20) will face Jake Bloss, who’ll be making his major league debut as the Orioles open a three-game series at Houston on Friday at 8:10 p.m.

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

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