clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Cedric Mullins robs a homer, hits a homer, saves the game. Orioles win 5-3

Can you believe what you just saw?

MLB: Baltimore Orioles at Seattle Mariners
He robs home runs. He hits home runs. What can’t Cedric Mullins do?
Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Um. Holy crap. The Orioles just put their fans through every emotion imaginable over the course of two innings in this afternoon’s series finale with the Mariners.

After watching Kyle Bradish and Bryce Miller hold each other’s offense in check over six innings, and two solid innings were thrown by each team’s bullpen, things got wild. Eight innings of ho-hum baseball turned into utter pandemonium starting with that ninth inning.

When the dust settled, the Orioles were on top with a 5-3 win. They took the series over the Mariners, won their 73rd game of the year, and increased their lead in the AL East to three games.

Let’s pick things up with one out in the top of the ninth inning. Jordan Westburg, who had been hitless to that point, launched a fly ball to left-center field that bounced up into the stands for an automatic double. He was immediately pinch-run for by Jorge Mateo. James McCann walked and then both players were balked up to second and third base.

I will never claim to understand balks, but MASN broadcaster Brad Brach noted that the pitcher, Andrés Muñoz, didn’t come fully set but that it was done in a way that is rarely called. The time, it was. Mariners manager Scott Servais came out to argue and was ejected. Things got feisty, including Servais tossing the umpire out of the game himself on his way back to the dugout.

Anyway, back to the action. Adley Rutschman chopped a ball to the right side. The speedy Mateo got a great jump and ran on contact. Muñoz fielded and fired home and on the close play Mateo was called safe. Replay confirmed that his hand got onto the plate before the swipe tag, and the Orioles took a 3-2 lead! That, folks, is why you keep Jorge Mateo on this team.

That left runners on the corners and the Orioles in need of a few more runs. They didn’t get them though, not yet. Gunnar Henderson grounded into an inning-ending double play and the game went to the ninth with the Orioles clinging to a one-run lead.

With Félix Bautista having just pitched two innings yesterday and Yennier Cano out of the game after a perfect eighth inning, Brandon Hyde turned to Mike Baumann to lock down the win. I was wary of the choice, but also couldn’t really think of anyone better.

Baumann got the first out on a pop-up, no problem. But then things went south for him in a hurry. Ty France hit a fly ball deep into center field. Cedric Mullins raced back to the wall. He leaped, stretched out his glove, and he robbed the home run! It wasn’t obvious at first if he made the catch and as he landed on the ground, Brach squeaked out “He got it!” Then we saw a fist pump from Mullins and knew for sure. What an incredible catch!

Unfortunately, things were far from over. Before we could collectively stop losing our minds over Mullins’s catch, Baumann threw a meatball to Dominic Canzone that he absolutely destroyed for a game-tying home run to right field. Dammit, Mike Baumann! It was an emotional rollercoaster and it wasn’t over. Nick Vespi came in to get the final out and sent the game to extra innings.

With Gunnar Henderson on base as the Manfred Man, Anthony Santander moved him over with a ground ball to second. That brought Mullins to the plate. He hit the fourth pitch he saw to right field. If it was fair, it was gone. It was...foul. No matter, two pitches later he straightened it out. The pitch from Trent Thornton was a fastball in the center of the plate and Mullins deposited it over the fence to give the Orioles a 5-3 lead.

Cedric Mullins, friends. This is what he brings to the table. Having him back and healthy is huge for this team. He didn’t even start this game, he was getting a rest! He didn’t come in until the sixth inning and he managed to both rob a home run and hit a go-ahead home run. Just incredible. Welcome back, Cedric!

Of course, the game wasn’t over. Someone had to pitch the bottom of the 10th. That person, it turned out, was Shintaro Fujinami. The quality of his stuff has been undeniable since he arrived on the team, but his control has betrayed him. When he went 2-0 to the first batter, I thought for sure Mulllins’s hard work was going to be erased.

Fuji struck out that first batter, Dylan Moore. After a wild pitch put the Manfred Man at third base, he got a fly out and a ground ball out to end the game, lock down the win, and pick up his first major league save.

What an incredible game! Or rather, what an incredible two innings. With the series in in the books, the Orioles head to San Deigo for a series with Manny Machado and the Padres. Game one will feature Grayson Rodriguez vs. Yu Darvish, and the first pitch is at 9:40 ET. Let’s keep it going!


Who is the Most Birdland Player for August 13th?

This poll is closed

  • 100%
    Cedric Mullins (He has become Death, destroyer of Seattle)
    (1155 votes)
1155 votes total Vote Now