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Gonzalez hit hard in Orioles' 5-2 loss to Marlins

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Gonzalez hit hard in Orioles' 5-2 loss to Marlins

MIAMI--- It was a quiet Orioles clubhouse. Their offense had been mostly silent the last two games, and they were eager to find their way out of Marlins Park.

There was the bizarre ejection of Brian Matusz on Saturday night, and the disappearing offense. They had no runs in 13 innings and none in the first five innings on Sunday.

By then, the Orioles were down by five runs in a 5-2 loss to the Miami Marlins before 23,834.

In their first 37 games, the Orioles hit 46 home runs. This weekend they hit none.

“We know we’re capable of better, but we haven’t put much together offensively. It’s something we’re going to have to do better and give our pitchers some breathing room,” manager Buck Showalter said.

Adam Jones was 3-for-15 in the three games. Chris Davis was 1-for-12 and J.J. Hardy 1-for-10 before being rested on Sunday.

On Saturday, the Orioles (19-22) had a chance to reach .500 for the first time since May 6. Now, they’re back at three games under with the surprising Houston Astros coming into to Baltimore. The Astros lead the AL West by 6 ½ games.

“This is the adversity stage. How do you respond to this? That’s what makes and separates the big league guys and the good teams. How do you come back from struggles? How do you combat that? How do you make the adjustments?” Jones said.

Against Tom Koehler (3-3), the Orioles didn’t have a baserunner for the first four innings, and finally scored in the sixth.

They had the bases loaded in the seventh with one out, but Steve Pearce hit into a double play. In the eighth, they had the bases loaded twice. Davis’ infield out scored Manny Machado, but Ryan Lavarnway, who is just 3-for-28 this season, grounded to second with two outs.

“Offense has been a challenge for us,” Showalter said. For the 14th time in 22 losses, the Orioles scored two runs or fewer, and they’ve lost all of those games. They’re 1-15 when scoring three or fewer.

Most of the Orioles had never seen Koehler. That doesn’t fly with Showalter.

“That’s a very convenient excuse. He didn’t do anything we didn’t know he was going to do. He just did it very well,” Showalter said.

Jimmy Paredes’ drove in Machado with the first run on a foul fly to left. His on-base streak ended at 20, but he’s hitting a robust .344.

“The only person who is really hitting the ball is Paredes. So I think everybody needs to go hover around him, grab his bats and rub his bats against everybody else’s bats,” Jones said.

Besides the lack of offense, Miguel Gonzalez, who has arguably been the Orioles’ most effective starter had a poor outing, perhaps his worst of the season. He allowed multiple hits in the second, third, fourth and fifth.

Martin Prado led off the second with a single. Justin Bour doubled, and Prado scored on Christian Yelich’s infield out.

With one out in the third, Dee Gordon and Marcell Ozuna singled. Giancarlo Stanton walked, and Gordon scored on an infield out.

Miami (18-27) scored twice in the fourth. Yelich and Adeiny Hechavarria began the inning with singles. Jhonathan Solano hit into a force. Koehler’s bunt moved runners to second and third, and after Gordon was walked intentionally. Ozuna’s two-run single made it 4-0.

Prado led off the fifth with his third home run.

Gonzalez (5-3) was charged with five runs and a career-high 10 hits in four-plus innings. His fastball wasn’t working.

“Obviously we know this team is very aggressive. First pitch, second pitch, they're not going to give in. My off-speed wasn't really where I want it. That's why they put the ball in play and things worked their way and didn't work our way,” Gonzalez said.

Chaz Roe, whose contract was purchased on Sunday from Norfolk, pitched two scoreless innings and Matusz awaiting word on his fate, added two more.

Hardy was rested for the first time since he returned from a shoulder injury that cost him the first 25 games of the season. He could have pinch hit for Lavarnway in the eighth or for Matusz in the ninth.

“I wanted to give J as much of the day as I could. There’s a situation where I also know we only had two guys left on the bench, and only one versatile player and Ryan’s got as much pop as anybody, and J.J. hasn’t been swinging the ball real well. I also thought he could benefit from a day off the field. “He’s fine. And now we’re trying to keep him that way. He’ll be in the lineup tomorrow,” Showalter said.

NEXT: Wei-Yin Chen (1-3, 2.90) faces Houston’s Dallas Keuchel (6-0, 1.67) on Monday at 1:35 p.m.

MORE ORIOLES: ALREADY OVER 60 STRIKEOUTS

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Showalter fired as Orioles manager after 115-loss season

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Showalter fired as Orioles manager after 115-loss season

Buck Showalter has been fired as manager of the Orioles, who made three playoff appearances under his guidance but this year staggered through the worst season since the team moved to Baltimore in 1954.

Showalter confirmed the dismissal Wednesday in a text message to The Associated Press.

A three-time AL Manager of the Year, Showalter ranks second on the Orioles' career list with 669 victories, trailing Earl Weaver. He took over in August 2010 and orchestrated the resurgence of a team that suffered through 14 straight losing seasons.

Once hailed for making baseball in Baltimore relevant again, the 62-year-old Showalter is out of a job after a season in which the Orioles finished 47-115, 61 games behind Boston in the AL East. His contract expired at the end of October, and the Orioles opted against a renewal as they continue a major rebuild that began in late July, when they traded stars Manny Machado, Zach Britton, Jonathan Schoop and Kevin Gausman for minor league prospects.

Those deals were made by Dan Duquette, the executive vice president of baseball operations, whose future with the organization is up in the air.

Showalter earned AL Manager of the Year honors in 2014 after taking the Orioles to the AL East title and a berth in the Championship Series. He was also named Manager of Year with the Yankees in 1994 and Texas in 2004. His career record is 1,551-1,517, including 669-684 with Baltimore.

"I just think ever since he came here, the franchise just gained a little more accountability, gained an edge for some time," Orioles outfielder Adam Jones said before the final game of the season. "It's the end of an era. A great manager, a great tenure. I don't know if he's going to coach or manage again, but he's got grandchildren. Go golf. Relax and go sit on the golf course."

With his future in doubt, Showalter appeared undaunted during the final series of the regular season.

"You know how good they've been to me? I'm not ever going to forget that, regardless of what happens," he said.

Oakland Athletics manager Bob Melvin was asked before his team's playoff game against the Yankees on Wednesday night whether Showalter was victimized by the trend toward analytics.

"I don't think Buck was a guy that ignored analytics," Melvin said. "I think it was probably a combination of how they did this year and maybe some relationships."

After the Orioles brought Showalter out of retirement, he offered renewed hope by fashioning a 34-23 finish in 2010 for a team that was 32-73 upon his arrival.

Baltimore ended a 14-year playoff drought in 2012, advancing to the AL Division Series following a victory over Texas in the wild-card game. Playoff appearances in 2014 and 2016 followed.

Last year, however, the Orioles fell to 75-87 after losing 19 of their final 23 games. Baltimore hoped the addition of starters Alex Cobb and Andrew Cashner would enable the team to be a contender this year, but a horrid start quickly dispelled that notion.

The Orioles' deficit in the AL East reached double digits by April 18 and they were 8-27 on May 8. By the end of July, Baltimore fully entered rebuilding mode, leaving Showalter with the dubious distinction of overseeing a team that finished with the poorest record in the majors and one that surpassed the 1939 St. Louis Browns for most losses in franchise history.

Showalter never offered an excuse. He just grinded forward, working to prepare the team for 2019 even though he knew he might not be around to follow through.

At the outset of a season-ending series against Houston, Showalter was asked if he was thinking these might be his final days in the Baltimore dugout.

"We all have some private thoughts and emotions about that, but I don't think it serves the organization well for me to be worried about that right now," he said. "We've got some things to do these last four games that need to get done."

Showalter has a reputation as a no-nonsense manager, but his players appreciated his baseball knowledge and skill at handling a team. He made a point of talking to each of them on a regular basis, almost always offering encouragement.

"He gave me a chance," said catcher Caleb Joseph, who played six-plus years in the minors before arriving in Baltimore. "He believed in me in 2014, ran me out there and gave me a chance to be part of a championship team. He's really vouched for me ever since. I owe a lot to Buck and his loyalty. He's been a main figure here for a long time."

Sensing the end was near for the only big league manager he had ever played for, first baseman Trey Mancini said: "It's been an absolute honor to play for Buck. He's been incredible."

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Red Sox beat Orioles 6-2 to clinch home field through Series

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Red Sox beat Orioles 6-2 to clinch home field through Series

The Boston Red Sox broke a 106-year-old franchise record with their 106th victory on Monday night, clinching home-field advantage through the postseason by beating the Baltimore Orioles 6-2 thanks to a pair of hits from major league batting leader Mookie Betts.

Nathan Eovaldi struck out 10 hapless Orioles batters to assure the Red Sox of the best record in baseball this season and home-field advantage through the World Series, if they make it that far. For now, they know they will open the Division Series at Fenway Park on Oct. 5 against the winner of the AL wild-card game between the New York Yankees and mostly likely Oakland.

The 1912 Red Sox won 105 games in their first season at Fenway Park.

The Orioles (45-111) became the sixth AL team and the first since the 2003 Tigers to lose 111 games, falling 60 games behind Boston (106-51) in the division. It's the first time since 1939 that teams separated by 60 wins in the standings have played each other.

Boston scored four in the second inning, getting back-to-back doubles from Steve Pearce and Brock Holt, an RBI single from Christian Vazquez and Betts' two-run homer over the Green Monster. It was the 32nd homer of the season for Betts, a new career high.

Betts also singled and scored in Boston's two-run fourth, moving him into the major-league lead with 125 runs scored. In his last three games, he is 10 for 16 with three homers and four doubles, and he leads teammate J.D. Martinez (.328) in the AL batting race.

Renato Nunez had three hits for the Orioles, who fell to 2-15 against Boston and 18-61 on the road this season.

FOR STARTERS

Six days after throwing six scoreless innings against the Yankees, Eovaldi (6-7) allowed one run on four hits in five innings, walking none but uncorking a pair of wild pitches.

Baltimore starter Dylan Bundy (8-16) gave up four runs on five hits and three walks in three innings, striking out five.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Orioles: RHP Yefrey Ramirez is scheduled to start on Wednesday, but manager Buck Showalter said he wanted to give him an extra day or two. "I think Yefrey will pitch again, I just don't know when," Showalter said.

Red Sox: SS Xander Bogaerts was back in the lineup after feeling soreness in his left shoulder during a swing and leaving Sunday night's game. ... INF Eduardo Nunez ran on Sunday to test his hamstring and was scheduled to run again on Monday with the goal of having him back in the lineup by Wednesday or Friday.

UP NEXT

LHP David Price (15-7) tries to bounce back from a rough start in Yankee Stadium in the second game of the series in what could be his last start of the regular season.