The Baltimore Orioles found themselves in another pitcher’s duel in the series finale in Philadelphia last night. The Birds played Philadelphia tough in all three games; sometimes two teams are just great matches for one another. Keegan Akin got the start last night at Citizens Bank Park, and he rebounded nicely after last week’s start in Boston. Akin’s line: 5.1 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 6 K.
The game was a scoreless tie through five innings. Austin Hays’ RBI-double in the sixth gave the Orioles a 1-0 lead. Hays would take third on the relay throw home, however that was the only run the O’s would net in that sequence.
And the Orioles leading the game didn’t last long. McCutchen smacked a two-run homer in the last of the sixth. And Philadelphia held a 2-1 lead. But the Orioles would tie it back up an inning later, on Trey Mancini’s RBI-groundout. And on we went tied at two.
However Philadelphia would put two across in the last of the seventh. And while the Birds did threaten in the eighth when Pedro Severino smacked an RBI-double, that was too large a lead for the O’s to overcome. Philadelphia took the finale 4-3, and the series two games to one.
Orioles’ manager Brandon Hyde credited the team after the game with going toe-to-toe with a playoff contender:
I’d like to give our guys credit for playing a postseason contender in kind of the situation we’re in roster-wise and how beat up we are and we’re playing a lot of guys that haven’t played in the big leagues hardly at all. I thought we pitched well. We made a couple mistakes out of the bullpen tonight, but for the most part for three days we pitched pretty much the best we pitched since the beginning of the year. So, I’m taking that as a positive and we hung in there with a good team over here with a big payroll. And we’re scraping right now, we’re limping in.Quote courtesy of Roch Kubatko, MASNsports
Speaking of Hyde, the team announced that he would be returning as manager next year. His original contract was through this season, so in theory he could have entered this season as a lame duck. But over last off season his contract was amended to go through 2022. It’s unclear if the two parties will negotiate a new deal this off season, or if Hyde will enter 2022 as a lame duck. Time will tell.
The Orioles now return home for the finale home stand of the season at Camden Yards, starting tonight against Texas. Zac Lowther gets the start for the O’s, and he’ll be opposed by Texas’ Glenn Otto. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.