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Another quality start, but another Orioles loss

Another quality start, but another Orioles loss

BALTIMORE—As August ends, it’s harder and harder to imagine the Orioles as a postseason team. Throughout the first five months of the season, the Orioles would have been a postseason team had the season ended on that day. 

After losing two of three to the American League East leading Toronto Blue Jays, the Orioles are not only four games in back of Toronto, but they’re now tied with Detroit for the second wild card. 

They ended August with a 13-16 record thanks to a 5-3 loss to the Blue Jays before 16,161 at Oriole Park on Wednesday. 

The Orioles (72-61) received three quality starts in their critical three-game series against Toronto (76-57). They lost two of those games. 

Not only was the result disappointing, but so were the crowds. The series drew just 47,775. 

In the latest installment, Yovani Gallardo allowed three runs in the first inning, then pitched well, but the Orioles could do little with Aaron Sanchez and the bullpen. 

“It’s tough, because we’re chasing them and they take two out of the three. We’ve just got to learn from it, get a good off-day tomorrow and come back stronger than we were. With September coming in, we’ve just got to compete and play hard and try to win as many games as possible,” Jonathan Schoop said. 

On Monday, Wade Miley gave up three runs in seven innings in a 5-1 loss, and Ubaldo Jimenez also allowed three in 6 2/3 innings as the Orioles won 5-3.

“I was really impressed with that, really proud of them. But it’s tough. It’s kind of frustrating. We’ve got some quality starting pitching and we were in them. The tack-on runs were tough,” Showalter said. 

Jose Bautista hit Gallardo’s first pitch for his 17th home run, and with two outs, Michael Saunders walked, and Russell Martin hit his 16th home run, and Toronto grabbed a 3-0 lead. 

Gallardo (4-7), who was won just one of 12, settled down and retired the last 10 batters he faced. He allowed three runs on five hits in six innings. 

“The first inning, the first pitch of the game, they took advantage of it,” Gallardo said.

“The one to Russell Martin, I didn’t think he got it that good. Unfortunately, it went out. It was just one of those things that was frustrating. It’s never easy for those guys to come from behind, especially in the first inning, giving up three runs in the first inning. After that I was able to put up zeroes, put up zeroes and make pitches whenever I had to, get some ground balls, get out of some tough jams.” 

Sanchez (13-2) allowed just two singles and walked two runners in the first four innings. 

With two outs in the fifth, Hyun Soo Kim and Schoop singled with Kim taking third. Manny Machado hit a slow roller to third that Josh Donaldson booted for an error. 

The Blue Jays had sent Sanchez to the minor leagues for 10 days to limit his innings. 

He allowed just the unearned run on five hits in six innings.

Mychal Givens allowed a run in the seventh on an RBI double by Devon Travis, and Saunders hit his 23rd home run of the year against Brad Brach in the eighth. It was Saunders’ seventh home run in 15 games against the Orioles this season. 

Schoop’s 21st home run of the year, a two-run shot off Roberto Osuna with two outs in the ninth made it 5-3.  

The Orioles have now lost five consecutive series to AL East opponents, and 22 of their final 28 are against their division foes. The losing troubles Showalter. 

“Of course it does. We got a month of baseball left. We got through a tough, we knew August was going to be tough, did some good things but not as many as we would have liked. We got an opportunity. A lot of baseball to be played. Anybody who sells us short doesn’t get the essence of our players. That’s fine. They’ve been doing that all year to us,” Showalter said. 

NOTES:  The Orioles hit 55 home runs in August, tying the major league record for most home runs in the month. … After Thursday’s off day, the New York Yankees come for three games beginning Friday night. Chad Green (2-3, 4.09) faces Dylan Bundy (7-5, 3.71) in the first game. On Saturday, it will be CC Sabathia (8-11, 4.31) against Kevin Gausman (6-10, 3.73). Michael Pineda (6-11, 5.12) against Miley (8-11, 5.43) on Sunday. 

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Orioles bats stay silent against Cleveland

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Orioles bats stay silent against Cleveland

BALTIMORE -- Mike Clevenger pitched a two-hitter in his first career complete game, and the Cleveland Indians hit three solo homers off Chris Tillman in a 4-0 victory over the Baltimore Orioles on Saturday.

Jose Ramirez went 3 for 4 with his team-leading fifth home run. Yan Gomes and Yonder Alonso also went deep for Cleveland, which came into the game ranked second-to-last in the AL in runs and last in batting average.

Clevenger (2-0) hardly needed the offensive support. Pitching on seven days' rest, the right-hander struck out three, walked two and allowed only one runner past first base.

The only two hits he allowed were singles by Manny Machado in the fourth inning and Chance Sisco in the fifth.

It was Clevenger's 35th career start. His previous longest outing was 7 1/3 innings, earlier this month against Kansas City.

While Clevenger is unbeaten in 11 starts since July 31, Tillman has experienced an opposite fate. This was his 22nd straight start without a victory, dating back to his first outing last season.

Tillman (0-4) gave up four runs, eight hits and a walk in six innings. The three home runs were one more than he yielded in his first three starts this season.

Michael Brantley hit a run-scoring groundout in the first inning and Gomes connected in the fourth for a 2-0 lead.

The Orioles put runners on the corners with one out in the fourth, their lone threat against Clevenger, who responded by retiring Tim Beckham on a short fly to left and getting Anthony Santander to ground out.

Ramirez led off the sixth with a drive to left, and Alonso hit a two-out shot that landed on Eutaw Street beyond the right-field scoreboard.

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Orioles pitching falls apart as Tigers complete sweep in Detroit

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Orioles pitching falls apart as Tigers complete sweep in Detroit

DETROIT - Leonys Martin hit his first big league grand slam, Jeimer Candelario had four hits and three RBIs, and the Detroit Tigers beat Baltimore 13-8 Thursday to extend the Orioles' losing streak to six.

Jordan Zimmermann (1-0) gave up four runs and seven hits in 5 1/3 innings, allowing two home runs to Manny Machado and one to Chris Davis. Zimmermann was pitching for the first time since being hit in the jaw by a line drove off the bat of Cleveland's Jason Kipnis on April 11.

Alex Cobb (0-2) made his second start after signing a $57 million, four-year contract in spring training and his ERA rose to 15.43. He allowed seven runs - five earned - and 10 hits in 3 1/3 innings.

Machado had four RBIs for the Orioles, who were outhit 18-14 in the game and outscored 23-15 in the three-game sweep.

Victor Martinez hit an RBI single in the first, but Davis put Baltimore ahead with a two-run homer in the second, his sixth hit and fourth homer in 10 career at-bats against Zimmermann.

Detroit went ahead for good with four runs in the bottom half after third baseman Tim Beckham's throwing error allowed James McCann to reach base leading off. Jose Iglesias hit a two-run triple, Miguel Cabrera had an RBI single and Nick Castellanos a run-scoring groundout.

Machado's homer in the third cut Baltimore's deficit to 5-2, but Candelario's two-run homer extended the lead to 7-2 in the bottom half. Martin homered off Mike Wright Jr. in a five-run fifth.