The Orioles! They’ve done it again. There have been many times this season where all you can do is scratch your head and wonder how this happened. That’s been true of some of the bad O’s teams of the recent past but this year they’re finally inspiring those kinds of feelings for good reasons.
It could have gone wrong so many different ways last night. With the Mariners inducting their franchise legendary pitcher Félix Hernández into the team Hall of Fame before the game, Seattle starter George Kirby paid tribute to the King with nine innings of shutout baseball in which he allowed just three hits and did not issue any walks. That is some impressive dominance.
Regrettably for the Mariners and fortunately for the Orioles and their fans, the Mariners offense decided to pay tribute to Hernández’s career also by not getting any runs of support for that great pitching outing. Things went into extra frames, where the O’s got a clutch Ryan Mountcastle hit off of flamethrowing Seattle closer Andrés Muñoz. Seattle, on the other hand, could do nothing against the new King Félix, with the Mountain following a scoreless ninth to preserve the tie with three strikeouts in the tenth to seal the win.
That is the good stuff. It could have easily been a loss and instead it was the 72nd Orioles win of the season. They preserve their lead of two games over the Rays, since Tampa rallied for three runs off of All-Star Emmanuel Clase to walk off the Guardians on Saturday. Thanks for nothing, AL Central. But the Orioles handled their own business and for anyone who wants to think about such things on August 13, the O’s magic number for the division is 43.
Now that they’ve stolen the Saturday game and preserved the haven’t been swept streak, the Orioles have a chance to go for a series win on Sunday afternoon. The 4:10 finale was the only one going in where it looked like the starting pitching matchup might favor the Orioles, with Kyle Bradish set to pitch for the road team and Bryce Miller lined up for Seattle.
Getting Bradish deep into the game will be important with the O’s bullpen being a man short due to the team being in the early days of a six-man rotation plan, and the bullpen getting significant use in the first two games of the series.
Around the blogO’sphere
Notes from Seattle on the six-man rotation (Steve Melewski)
It’s all but officially a six-man rotation for the Orioles for a little while. Manager Brandon Hyde told reporters before yesterday’s game that the team did seek out input from the existing starters before making this change.
For Nick Vespi, packing lightly and pitching where needed come with the job (The Baltimore Banner)
Life on the Triple-A to MLB shuttle is not glamorous.
Checking in on O’s new top 30 prospects (Orioles.com)
Beat writer Jake Rill gives an overview of some of the adjustments to MLB Pipeline’s top 30 Orioles prospects list with their midseason update.
Birthdays and Orioles anniversaries
Today in 1969, Jim Palmer pitched a no-hitter in an 8-0 victory over the Athletics. Until John Means’s 2021 no-hitter, this was the most recent solo no-no for the Orioles franchise.
In 1978, the Orioles beat the Yankees after an arriving rainstorm led to the rollback of a game to the last completed inning; the O’s had surrendered the lead to the Yankees in the top half of an inning that was ultimately erased. The rule was changed two years later, perhaps because of Earl Weaver’s and the grounds crew’s reported delaying tactics on this occasion. In such circumstances today, the game would be suspended to be resumed later.
There are several former Orioles who were born on this day. They are: 2007 five-game pitcher Cory Doyne, 2006-07/10 outfielder Corey Patterson, 2010 reliever Will Ohman, 1987-91 pitcher Jeff Ballard, and 1987-88 pitcher Tom Niedenfuer. Today is Niedenfuer’s 64th birthday, so an extra happy birthday to him.
Is today your birthday? Happy birthday to you! Your birthday buddies for today include: sharpshooter Annie Oakley (1860), director Alfred Hitchcock (1899), actor John Slattery (1962), and Under Armour founder Kevin Plank (1972).
On this day in history...
In 1792, the National Tribunal of revolutionary France declared King Louis XVI to be an enemy of the people after formally arresting him.
In 1961, East Germany closed its border in Berlin and began constructing a wall to keep citizens from escaping to the western side.
And that’s the way it is in Birdland on August 13. Have a safe Sunday. Go O’s!