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Welington Castillo hits first career grand slam to pull O's out of six-game losing streak

Welington Castillo hits first career grand slam to pull O's out of six-game losing streak

The Baltimore Orioles kept insisting they would turn things around and break out of their slump. Maybe this is a start.

Welington Castillo hit his first career grand slam and drove in a personal-best five runs, and the Orioles snapped a six-game losing streak with a rain-delayed 10-6 victory over the Chicago White Sox on Wednesday night.

Castillo gave the Orioles an 8-5 lead with his drive against Miguel Gonzalez (4-8) in the fifth inning and helped prevent them from matching their longest slide of the season. Baltimore also evened its record at 32-32 after falling below .500 for the first time since Oct. 3, 2015.

"We needed a win, we got one today and hopefully we can keep it rolling," Dylan Bundy said.

The Orioles have been struggling since a 22-10 start.

Things weren't looking good for them early on, after Matt Davidson homered in his third straight game to help Chicago grab a 5-1 lead. But the Orioles turned this one around, pounding out 13 hits and overcoming two errors on the way to a lopsided victory.

Trey Mancini had a double and two singles. He scored three runs and drove in one.

Mark Trumbo added two hits and two runs, and a shaky Dylan Bundy (7-5) got the support he needed. The right-hander picked up the win after going 1-4 in his previous six starts. He gave up five runs and six hits in five innings.

Gonzalez got pounded for eight runs -- matching his highest total since June 25, 2016 -- and nine hits over five innings. The right-hander is 1-8 in his past nine starts.

"I've been there before and I've had success," he said. "Right now I'm struggling. I just have to keep working between my starts and hopefully everything will turn around."

The game was delayed 90 minutes at the start. And after getting outscored a combined 16-8 by the White Sox over the previous two games, the Orioles looked like they might get blown out again.

They jumped into it by scoring three in the fourth, with Hyun Soo Kim's two-run single cutting it to 5-4. Castillo got caught in a rundown between second and third on the play for the third out, but did he ever make up for it in the fifth.

Gonzalez retired the first two batters before giving up singles to Trumbo and Mancini and walking Jonathan Schoop. That brought up Castillo, whose towering grand slam to the bushes beyond the center-field wall gave the Orioles an 8-5 lead.

"(Castillo) has had had a track record of that for awhile," manager Buck Showalter said. "You always wonder how numbers are going to translate from league to league. He had to learn a lot of new hitters and new pitchers. ... He's been a quick study. Very easy to pull for, really good teammate."


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Orioles agree to one-year deal with pitcher Chris Tillman, according to reports

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Orioles agree to one-year deal with pitcher Chris Tillman, according to reports

SARASOTA, Fla. -- A person familiar with the negotiations says pitcher Chris Tillman and the Baltimore Orioles have agreed to a $3 million, one-year contract.

The deal includes performance bonuses, the person told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Monday because the deal had not yet been announced.

Tillman was 1-7 with a 7.84 ERA in 19 starts and five relief appearances last year. He would be the second starter added by the Orioles in the past week after right-hander Andrew Cashner.

Tillman likely would join right-handers Dylan Bundy, Kevin Gausman and Cashner in the rotation.

The 29-year-old right-hander lives in Sarasota and had been working out at the Orioles' facility before spring training. Manager Buck Showalter watched Tillman throw and was impressed.

Tillman began last season on the disabled list with right shoulder stiffness.

"Better than he did last year at this time. I think he's got the chance to pitch well for somebody this year," Showalter said. "A lot of the challenges he had last year -- this time last year -- aren't there. Somebody's going to reap the benefits."

Tillman's is 73-55 with a 4.43 ERA in nine major league seasons, all with the Orioles. He won 16 games in both 2013 and 2016.

"He's a guy when he's healthy you can bank on him giving you 200 innings and keeping his ERA between a 3 and a 4," Gausman said. "That in the AL East is always going to be very valuable."


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Orioles Spring Training Schedule 2018

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Orioles Spring Training Schedule 2018

Live baseball is close to gracing our television screens again. The Orioles haven't had the most active offseason, to put it mildly. Fans are still wondering who will make up more than half the spots in this year's rotation, and Manny Machado's upcoming free agency is looming over every decision the organization makes.

Still, it's exciting to be able to follow the team again. Not every game is televised, so get ready to constantly refresh your favorite beat writer's Twitter account for all your updates.

Even without getting to watch the games, it'll be comforting to once again check box scores in the morning to see if Jonathan Schoop is building on his breakout season, or if top-prospect Austin Hays is all he's cracked up to be (spoiler: he is).

This year's spring training will be especially interesting, considering how many big-name players will be signing in the next few weeks. The O's haven't yet made a big splash this offseason, but with the sheer volume of capable players still on the market, you have to wonder if they'll try to sign some impact players at bargain values.

Typically, the excitement of adding a new piece to the lineup or rotation has to be reignited after a long winter off, but this season, those additions will be taking place while camp is already underway.

It's going to be a hectic few weeks as teams prepare for thier seasons, so bookmark this page to check on on the Orioles spring training schedule over the next few weeks as the team finally takes the field in 2018.

Orioles 2018 Spring Training Schedule

Friday, Feb. 23 (SS) - Rays at Orioles, 1:05 pm (MASN)
Saturday, Feb. 24 (SS) - Orioles at Phillies, 1:05 pm
Saturday, Feb. 24 (SS) - Twins at Orioles, 6:05 pm
Sunday, Feb. 25 - Orioles at Red Sox, 1:05 pm 
Monday, Feb. 26 - Tigers at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Tuesday, Feb. 27 - Orioles at Rays, 1:05 pm
Wednesday, Feb. 28 - Cardinals at Orioles, 1:05 pm (MLBN) (MASN)
Thursday, Mar. 1 - Orioles at Rays, 1:05 pm
Friday, Mar. 2 - Pirates at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Saturday, Mar. 3 (SS) - Orioles at Phillies, 1:05 pm
Sunday, Mar. 4 - Red Sox at Orioles, 1:05 pm (MASN)
Tuesday, Mar. 6 - Orioles at Twins, 1:05 pm 
Wednesday, Mar. 7 - Orioles at Rays, 1:05 pm
Thursday, Mar. 8 - Blue Jays at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Friday, Mar. 9 - Orioles at Blue Jays, 1:07 pm
Saturday, Mar. 10 (SS) - Pirates at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Sunday, Mar. 11 (SS) - Orioles at Red Sox, 1:05 pm 
Sunday, Mar. 11 (SS) - Phillies at Orioles, 6:05 pm (MASN)
Monday, Mar. 12 - Orioles at Pirates, 1:05 pm 
Tuesday, Mar. 13 - Orioles at Twins, 1:05 pm 
Wednesday, Mar. 14 - Yankees at Orioles, 1:05 pm (MLBN) (MASN)
Thursday, Mar. 15 - Orioles at Cardinals, 1:05 pm
Friday, Mar. 16 - Orioles at Mets, 1:10 pm 
Saturday, Mar. 17 (SS) - Blue Jays at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Sunday, Mar. 18 - Mets at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Monday, Mar. 19 - Orioles at Tigers, 1:05 pm
Tuesday, Mar. 20 - Rays at Orioles, 6:05 pm (MASN)
Wednesday, Mar. 21 - Orioles at Yankees, 6:35 pm 
Thursday, Mar. 22 - Red Sox at Orioles, 1:05 pm (MASN)
Friday, Mar. 23 (SS) - Rays at Orioles, 1:05 pm
Saturday, Mar. 24 - Twins at Orioles, 6:05 pm
Sunday, Mar. 25 - Orioles at Phillies, 1:05 pm 
Monday, Mar. 27 (in Norfolk, VA) - Orioles at Tides (AAA), 3:05 pm