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Orioles use four-run 6th inning to score 8-5 win over Diamondbacks in series finale

After taking the lead on with a 6-run inning on Saturday, the O’s offense brought the fireworks to the 6th on Sunday to win the rubber match with Arizona.

Baltimore Orioles v Arizona Diamondbacks Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images

After a back-and-forth start to the game, the Orioles again used a big inning to score a win against the Diamondbacks, as they took the series finale 8-5.

After the D-Backs tied things at 4-4 in the 5th, the Orioles immediately took the lead back with a four-run top of the 6th. Ryan O’Hearn led off the inning by destroying a ball to center field, launching a double over the head of Arizona CF Alek Thomas. Aaron Hicks then grounded out to second, moving O’Hearn to third. Arizona then pulled starter Zac Gallen, but reliever Kyle Nelson was not able to get out of the jam.

With the infield drawn in, Cedric Mullins rocketed a ball right at second base, deflecting off the second baseman’s glove and into center field, allowing O’Hearn to trot home from third. The rally was just beginning at this point, as Ramón Urías followed up Mullins with a single of his own to give the O’s another runner in scoring position. Jordan Westburg then pinch hit for starter Adam Frazier and wasted no time making an impact, shooting a double down the left field line and into the corner, scoring Mullins and leaving the O’s with runners at second and third. Adley Rutschman then capped off the rally with a two-run double that ricocheted off the glove of a drawn-in infielder, driving in Urías and Westburg and giving the O’s a 8-4 lead.

This big rally was only necessary due to the Orioles blowing some early leads. After falling behind early on in the first two games of the series, the O’s reversed that trend with two runs in the top of the 1st. Gunnar Henderson pulled a one-out single into RF to give Baltimore their first base runner. Anthony Santander followed that up with a single of his own, rolling a ball under the 1B’s glove to give the O’s runners at second and third. After Santander stole second, O’Hearn collected his first big hit of the game, rocketing a single up the middle to score the Orioles’ first two runs.

After the D-Backs cut that lead in half in the bottom of the 1st, the O’s tacked on two more runs in the top of the 2nd. Urías collected his first single of the game on a line drive that deflected off the mound and into right field. Frazier then dumped a soft line drive into CF for a single before Rutschman worked a walk to load the bases. After starting the rally in the 1st, Gunnar finished the rally in the 2nd, singling on a ground ball that snuck past first base to drive home Urías and Frazier and give Baltimore a 4-1 lead.

Starter Jack Flaherty failed to protect those leads, however, as he gave the O’s an up and down performance Sunday in the desert. After being spotted that 2-0 lead before he threw a pitch, he quickly got two outs in the bottom of the 1st on a fly out and a K. However, he couldn’t keep the inning clean, allowing a solo shot to No.3 hitter Lourdes Gurriel Jr. to cut the lead in half. His 2nd inning was cleaner, as he allowed a lone single and bookended things with a pair of Ks.

Flaherty couldn’t keep building up positive momentum in the 3rd, though, as he gave up another bomb. After hanging a slider to Gurriel for his homer in the 1st, he started the 3rd by hanging another slider to NL Rookie of the Year favorite Corbin Carroll. The Diamondbacks RF promptly deposited that slider into the RF stands and cut the O’s lead to 4-2. The Orioles righty briefly settled down after that, collecting the next six outs while only allowing a walk. However, that period of calm was blown completely out of the water in the bottom of the 5th.

Arizona’s No.9 hitter Geraldo Perdomo led off the inning with a single that just snuck between Mountcastle and Frazier. Carroll then chopped a ball up the middle to Henderson, who tried to tag Perdomo and then fire to first to complete the double play. While Carroll clearly beat the throw to first, Perdomo also clearly stepped out of the base path to avoid the tag from Henderson. The umpires ruled both runners safe, however, which gave the D-Backs the opening they needed to tie the game. The very next batter, Ketel Marte, singled up the middle to score Perdomo and then Carroll raced home on a wild pitch to tie the game at four. Flaherty left the game with two outs in the 5th, finishing with a final line of 4.2 innings, six hits, four runs, a walk and seven Ks.

Luckily for the O’s, their bullpen picked up their starter and delivered 4.1 innings of one-run baseball. Danny Coulombe was the first guy out of the pen, taking over for Flaherty and getting Thomas to ground out to short and stranding a runner at second. The lefty then worked a perfect 6th inning, punctuating his appearance with a K for his final out. Cionel Pérez took over in the bottom of the 7th, and despite giving up a single to Carroll he completed a clean inning when he got Marte to ground into a 6-3, inning-ending double play.

Jorge López then made his first appearance since returning to the Orioles bullpen, taking over in the bottom of the 8th. Things started out a little shaky for López, as Gurriel led off the inning with a double. However, that didn’t shake the former All-Star closer, as he set down the next three batters in order to leave Gurriel stranded at second.

Yennier Cano then came in to close things out in the 9th. While La Roca was far from rock solid, he did what he needed to do to seal the win. D-Backs 1B Christian Walker led off the inning with a frozen-rope HR that went screaming into the LF bleachers to cut the lead to 8-5. Cano shook that off, however, getting pinch hitter Gabriel Moreno to ground out on a tapper back to the mound and then retiring Perdomo on a ground out to first. That set up one final showdown with Carroll in a matchup of 2023 All-Stars. Carroll got ahead 2-1, then fouled off a couple pitches, but Cano ultimately won the battle with another grounder to O’Hearn that ended the game.

The win keeps the O’s 2.5 games ahead of the Rays, who scored a 6-3 in Cleveland on Sunday. It also brings the magic number in the AL East down to 24, and sends the O’s off to Anaheim with another series win. While it was certainly a much more frustrating start to the game than was necessary, the victory was still well-earned. Taking two out of three on the road against a team fighting for their playoff lives is exactly the kind of thing the very best teams in baseball do. And on Sunday, once again, the O’s showed exactly why they are one of the very best in all of MLB.


Who was the Most Birdland Player for Sunday, September 3rd?

This poll is closed

  • 10%
    Gunnar Henderson
    (76 votes)
  • 31%
    Ryan O’Hearn
    (234 votes)
  • 6%
    Adley Rutschman
    (47 votes)
  • 8%
    Cedric Mullins
    (61 votes)
  • 43%
    The Bullpen
    (322 votes)
740 votes total Vote Now