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Orioles Fly High with Nine Game Win Streak

Jordan Lyles

Jordan Lyles

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The song of the Baltimore Oriole is a sweet herald of spring in eastern North America, but the Oriole also possesses a ballad foretelling of a wonderful summer nationwide. The Orioles flew high on Tuesday night, defeating the Chicago Cubs 4-2 at Wrigley Field in Chicago. With this victory, Baltimore is now at .500, in possession of a 44-44 record. To get to this point took a streak of labor; for the first time since 1999, the Orioles have won nine games in a row.

Jordan Lyles took the mound for the O’s, and recorded his eighth quality start of the season. He pitched seven innings, gave up seven hits, but limited the Cubs to just two runs while striking out five. He fell behind 2-0 early after giving up a homer to Ian Happ and allowing an RBI single to Alfonso Rivas. But the Orioles battled back with a fourth inning two-run homer by Ramón Urías. Jorge Mateo provided a much-needed insurance run in the seventh inning with a solo shot launched to center, to give Baltimore their culminating 4 run total, as well as their eventual victory. Mateo finished the evening going 2-for-4, including his homer and a stolen base.

When you consider that Baltimore won only 52 games last season, this is certainly an achievement. According to ESPN Stats and Info, they are the 4th team since 1900 to win 9 consecutive games the season after finishing with the worst record in MLB. All teams in the AL east have a record of .500 or better. The Orioles not only have the third best record in baseball since June 11, they also currently hold the longest win streak in baseball.

With tonight’s win, the Orioles are now within two games of a wild-card berth. Given their resilience and likability, are the Orioles the hottest team in baseball right now? Fly high, Birdland.

Pitchers with an EDGE

Dylan Cease vs. Guardians

5 2/3 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 9 K

Perhaps one of the more egregious All-Star snubs, Cease showed quite an starry performance on Tuesday night, throwing 106 pitches, 64 of them for strikes. Cease’s slider lured an astonishing 19 swings and misses and six called strikes, good for a 44% CSW (called strikes plus whiffs) on that pitch, and 35% on all pitches overall.

Chris Sale vs. Rays

5 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 5 K

Nothing to tear down here except Rays hitters. Sale was lights out in his 2022 debut, limiting the Rays to just three hits through five scoreless innings. The Rays rallied, however, after Sale was removed, so he’ll have to walk away with the no-decision. Sale had been sidelined with a stress fracture in his right rib cage he sustained in February, which caused him to miss the first half of the 2022 season.

José Berríos vs. Phillies

6 IP, 6 H, 3 H, 0 BB, 13 K

13 strikeouts were the crown jewel in this performance from Berríos, as he tied his career high strikeout total. 20 swings and misses marked his highest total this season and the second most in his career. Though this performance won’t do much to help his ERA, it’s nice to see him miss bats again. Berríos threw 94 pitches, 74 for strikes. He finished the evening with an absolute bonkers 46% CSW on all four pitches, his curveball good for eight whiffs and 11 called strikes.

Hitters with an EDGE

Ramón Urías vs. Cubs

3-for-4, HR, 2 RBI

Urías was tonight’s hero with a big night at the plate, including his seventh home run of the year, a two-run bomb that went 417 feet at 105.8 MPH in the fourth inning. This gave the Orioles the needed go-ahead run; they’d maintain the lead until the end of the contest.

Matt Olson vs. Mets

1-for-4, HR, 2 RBI

Olson’s go-ahead homer helped the Braves to a 4-1 win over the Mets on Tuesday night at Truist Park. The Braves are now 1 1/2 games of the first-place Mets in the NL East. That was Olson’s 14th round-tripper of the season; he now holds an .810 OPS and is one of five Braves hitters in Tuesday’s lineup with an OPS over .800.

Sean Murphy vs. Rangers

4-for-5, 2 2B, BB, 2 RBI

What a big night at the plate for Murphy, whose two RBI seemed to be a mere scratch in the A’s 14-7 walloping of the Rangers. Murphy reached base in all six of his plate appearances. He’s been on quite the tear lately, and it’s probably worth pointing out that he’s slashing an eye-opening .370/.419/.519 in his last seven games played.

Closing Time

Jorge López vs. Cubs (17th save)

1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K

Brooks Raley vs. Red Sox (fifth save)

1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K

Jordan Romano vs. Phillies (19th save)

1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K

David Bednar vs. Marlins (16th save)

1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K

Alexis Diaz vs. Yankees (third save)

1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K

A.J. Minter vs. Mets (fourth save)

1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K

Josh Hader vs. Twins (27th save)

1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K

Giovanny Gallegos vs. Dodgers (10th save)

1 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 2 K

Gregory Soto vs. Royals (18th save)

1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K

Daniel Bard vs. Padres (19th save)

1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K

Ryan Pressly vs. Angels (19th save)

1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K

Wednesday’s Matchup of the Day

Cristian Javier (6-4, 3.01 ERA) vs. Shohei Ohtani (8-4, 2.44 ERA)

Javier had pitched back-to-back gems against the Yankees and Angels before the Royals stopped him in his tracks on Wednesday. Javier will bring a 3.01 ERA, 0.99 WHIP and 102/27 K/BB ratio into Wednesday’s repeat start versus the Angels. On the other side, Shohei Ohtani fanned 10 in his last start against the Marlins. He’s struck out 40 and allowed no earned runs in his last four starts. Though the Angels have not been playing the best ball lately, maybe their chances of winning will look better with Ohtani on the mound. Over their last 35 games, the Angels are 5-0 when Ohtani starts.

Priority Pickup

Johnny Cueto - SP, Chicago White Sox - Rostered in 35% of Yahoo Leagues

The 36-year-old veteran works hard, and wants you to know he does so via his upper deck stadium staircase workouts on Instagram. He’s had decent stuff out of the back end of a beleaguered White Sox rotation, and has earned a 2.91 ERA, 1.15 WHIP, and 53 strikeouts through 68 innings pitched. He’ll start against the Twins on Thursday; last he faced them, he held Minnesota to two runs off five hits in six innings.

American League Quick Hits

Wander Franco underwent successful surgery on Tuesday to repair a fractured hamate bone in his right wrist. … Rays placed LHP Josh Fleming on the 15-day injured list with right oblique tightness. … Blue Jays activated C Danny Jansen from the 10-day injured list…Kevin Gausman (ankle) could return to the Blue Jays’ rotation Thursday versus the Royals. … Whit Merrifield (toe) has yet to be placed on the injured list. … Trevor Story has been diagnosed with a bruised right hand. … Matt Strahm has been diagnosed with a left wrist contusion. … Mike Trout was removed before the fifth inning Tuesday versus the Astros due to upper back spasms.

National League Quick Hits

Freddy Peralta (shoulder) has progressed to throwing multi-inning bullpen sessions. … Brewers activated OF Hunter Renfroe from the 10-day injured list…Tyrone Taylor is again experiencing concussion-related symptoms. … X-rays turned up negative on Garrett Cooper‘s left knee. … Nick Martinez is considered day-to-day with a minor ankle sprain. … Alex Colomé is being evaluated for an upper hamstring injury.