2022 is already a success for the Baltimore Orioles. It was a success well before this afternoon’s game. Last year they won 52 games total. In 2022 and this afternoon, Kyle Bradish went to the mound to try to get the Birds their 54th win, and more importantly to keep pace in the playoff race. Bradish’s line: 5.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 3 BB, 5 K.
Bradish had a bit of a tough afternoon today, but pushed through five innings. He gave up an RBI-single to Garcia in the first, however one inning later Ryan McKenna tied things up at one with a solo homer. Both teams left a large number of runners on base, meaning Bradish did allow some base runners. As did the Oriole pen.
But it was once again the later innings that proved fateful for the Birds. They seem to do their best work around or after the seventh inning stretch. Robinson Chirinos smacked a solo homer in the top of the seventh, giving the O’s the lead at 2-1. But Texas came right back on Heinz’s solo homer in the bottom of the seventh. And we played on.
But again, the O’s do their best work in the later innings. They got the lead back in the eighth on an RBI-double by Terrin Vavra. Chirinos would add a sac fly-RBI, and the O’s led 4-2 after eight.
But while the O’s were smelling a sweet deep in the heart of Texas, they weren’t done yet. Santander would tack on an RBI-double in the top of the ninth. He would later score on a wild pitch. Texas would get a run back in the last of the ninth with a solo homer by Semien, but the O’s wrapped up a 6-3 win.
And with that, they swept Texas in Texas. (This after sweeping them in Baltimore last month.) they remain a game behind Tampa for third place in the AL East, and a game-and-a-half out of the final wild card spot. Whether they make it remains to be seen. But they’re “in it” for sure!
Again, 2022 is a success. The rebuild is working! The expectations thus will be higher next year. But the Orioles have unfinished business in 2022 before we flip the calendar.