Rodriguez shuts down Mariners as Orioles' offense plays small ball in 2-0 win -
Rich Dubroff

Rodriguez shuts down Mariners as Orioles’ offense plays small ball in 2-0 win

Photo Credit: Joe Nichloson USA TODAY Sports


What happened? Grayson Rodriguez allowed just two hits in 6 1/3 scoreless innings to lead the Orioles to a 2-0 win over the Seattle Mariners on Tuesday night at T-Mobile Park.

Rodriguez (10-3) has won five of his last six starts. He struck out eight and walked four. His biggest out was striking out Cal Raleigh with runners on second and third to end the sixth inning.

He had 19 swings-and-misses, a career high, in the Orioles’ seventh shutout of the season.


“We won this game with pitching tonight,” manager Brandon Hyde told reporters in Seattle. “We can win in all different kinds of ways.”

The Orioles (54-31) scored two runs against Seattle starter George Kirby (7-6). Anthony Santander’s RBI single in the fourth, which came on the 10th pitch of the at-bat, scored Gunnar Henderson.

“Right there I was looking for something over the plate to put a good swing to be able to score that run right there,” Santander said in a MASN postgame interview.

Cedric Mullins’ run-scoring single scored Jordan Westburg in the seventh.

Kirby allowed two runs on seven hits in 6 1/3 innings.

The Orioles, who have won five of six, lead the American League East by a game over the New York Yankees, who lost to Cincinnati, 5-4.

Yennier Cano recorded the final two outs of the seventh. Cionel Pérez pitched a scoreless eighth.

Oriole closer Craig Kimbrel hit Luke Raley with a pitch to start the ninth, and moments after Raleigh hit a long foul ball, he struck him out. Kimbrel hit Jorge Polanco to put runners on first and second. Both runners moved up on Dominic Canzone’s grounder to first. Kimbrel then struck out Julio Rodríguez to end the game.

It was Kimbrel’s 20th save, and the 437th of his career, tying him with Francisco Rodriguez for fourth place on the all-time saves list.

“We’ve got a guy with a lot of experience right there,” Santander said. “He’s been in that situation a lot. He knows how to come through. He did that tonight.”

Seattle (47-40) remains the leader in the American League West.

Ryan Mountcastle remained out of the lineup for the third straight game. Hyde told reporters he was under the weather.

Dean Kremer, who’s been on the 15-day injured list with a right triceps strain, will start Wednesday’s game. The Orioles need to make a roster move to make room for Kremer.

Corbin Burnes, whose wife delivered twin baby girls over the weekend, will start on Thursday.

The starters for the American League All-Star team will be announced on Wednesday night at 7 on ESPN. Mountcastle, Santander, catcher Adley Rutschman, shortstop Gunnar Henderson, third baseman Jordan Westburg and designated hitter Ryan O’Hearn are finalists.

How good was Rodriguez? Rodriguez threw 104 pitches, the second-most in his career

“Really been focused on getting the changeup back,” he said in Seattle. “ We were able to accomplish that. Sprayed a lot of heaters up and away. They were up in the zone, and I think that helped.

“I think we can attack the lineup a lot of different ways. That’s the foundation of how I pitch is off that changeup, and if I can get that working, I’m confident I can do anything I want with it.”

On May 16th, Rodriguez allowed just one hit in six shutout innings against the Mariners in Baltimore.

“I was pretty comfortable facing them,” he said. “There are some good hitters you have to watch out for.”

“I thought he threw the ball great. Really good changeup tonight,” Hyde said. “Great job of changing speeds.

“He’s just got really good stuff. When he’s got fastball command and that changeup going, he’s going to be tough against any lineup.”

Santander was impressed with Rodriguez.

“He was attacking the hitters. He made pitches when he needed to. It’s awesome,” he said.

What’s the word? “You’ve not going to score seven runs a night. You’ve got to be able to win low-scoring games like this.”-Hyde on winning without hitting a home run.

What does it mean? The Orioles are 3-1 against Seattle, and if they win one of the final two games of the series, they’d have home-field advantage against the Mariners in any postseason series.

What’s the stat of the day?  6. The Orioles have allowed two or fewer hits six times this year. They’ve thrown five two-hitters and a one-hitter.

What’s going on in the minor leagues? Third baseman Coby Mayo drove in five runs and hit his 18th home run in Triple-A Norfolk’s 13-12 loss to Durham. First baseman Garrett Cooper, who was signed last week, hit a pair of two-run home runs. Starter Carlos Tavera allowed six runs on eight hits in three innings.

Kyle Brnovich (5-2), Dylan Heid and Dan Hammer combined on a three-hit shutout in Double-A Bowie’s 3-0 win over Richmond. Brnovich allowed three hits in five innings. Heid pitched three perfect innings, and Hammer collected his second save of the season.

Jackson Baumeister (1-3) allowed five runs on four hits in 3 2/3 innings in High-A Aberdeen’s 6-1 loss to Greensboro. He walked four and struck out seven. Centerfielder Enrique Bradfield Jr. had two hits and increased his average to .274.

Single-A Delmarva was held to one hit in its 8-1 loss to Fredericksburg. Outfielder Thomas Sosa was removed from Delmarva’s game with a right shoulder injury. Right-handed pitcher Carter Baumler left the game with right biceps soreness.

Bowie catcher/first baseman Samuel Basallo was named as the Orioles’ representative to the Futures Game on July 13th at Arlington, Texas.

The Orioles signed right-handed pitcher Vinny Nittoli to a minor league contract and assigned him to Norfolk. Nittoli is 0-1 with a 3.07 ERA in 13 games with Seattle, Philadelphia, the New York Mets and Oakland from 2021-2024.

What’s next? Kremer (3-4, 4.32) will start against Logan Gilbert (5-4, 2.72) on Wednesday at 10:10 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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