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Gonzalez's rough sixth leads to Orioles 7-4 loss


Gonzalez's rough sixth leads to Orioles 7-4 loss

BALTIMORE –- It was a strange night for Miguel Gonzalez. He had a rough start, an excellent middle and an awful end. That awful end led to four runs in the sixth inning.

That sixth led to the Washington Nationals’ 7-4 win over the Orioles on Saturday night before the second sellout crowd in as many nights, 44,495 at Oriole Park, tied “The Battle of the Beltways” at a game each.

Gonzalez allowed seven of the first 10 runners to reach, giving up two runs in the second, then set down 10 straight before allowing that four-run sixth without retiring a batter.

“I think the only thing I’m doing wrong is thinking too much right now. Really not focusing on letting it go and just be myself. Right now, mechanically, I’m just overthinking things right now. I think that’s what’s getting away from me. I will go on the break and refresh that come the second half and do what I can do,” Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez (7-6) allowed six runs on eight hits in five-plus innings.

The Orioles (44-43) have struggled since winning 17 of 22 last month. They’ve lost nine of 12, and they are just 1-for-35 with runners in scoring position in their last five games.

“Just not taking advantage of opportunities. I’d say we’re not knocking runners in off base, a lot of teams are getting a lot of two-out base knocks off us. Other teams are getting the job done, and we just haven’t been. But it’s baseball, it comes around,” Steve Pearce said.

About 45 minutes before game time, Chris Davis was scratched with gastroenteritis, and the Orioles made several changes to their lineup. For a time, it looked as if those alterations would pay off.

Manager Buck Showalter said that about 75 minutes before the scheduled 7:15 p.m. start, Davis became ill. He didn’t commit to Davis playing on Sunday.

Showalter added the Davis’ illness to his list of woes, which includes the lack of clutch production.

Sometimes, I think we're trying to do too much and that's a lot easier to say. You tell them not to. At this level pitchers make a living at letting you get yourself out and I think that's happening, but that's true every night in some form or fashion,” Showalter said.

In the bottom of the first, Manny Machado led off with single off Jordan Zimmermann. Chris Parmelee doubled, and Machado scored on an infield out by Jimmy Paredes.

The Nationals (47-39) took a 2-1 lead in the second. Wilson Ramos walked, Danny Espinosa and Tyler Moore singled to load the bases with none out, and Ramos scored on Ian Desmond’s double play. Matt den Dekker walked, and Michael A. Taylor’s single drove in Espinosa.

With one out in the second, J.J. Hardy singled, and Caleb Joseph hit his sixth home run of the season, and the Orioles had a 3-2 advantage.

Pearce, inserted in the lineup when Davis was scratched, hit his seventh home run leading off the fourth.

By then, Gonzalez was on his roll. That streak abruptly ended when Bryce Harper hit his first home run against the Orioles, and his 26th of the season to lead off the sixth. Harper had been 4-for-24 in Baltimore.

Clint Robinson and Ramos singled. They scored when Espinosa ripped his 10th home run of the season to right field for a 6-4 Nationals lead.

Gonzalez hopes by his next start on July 19, things will be better.

“It’s tough man, honestly. You go in and you think about it and you’re like, ‘What’s going on?’ I was throwing really good for a couple innings and they’re good hitters,” Gonzalez said. “When you don’t make good pitches, bad things might happen.”

Zimmermann (8-5) allowed four runs on nine hits in five innings.

Desmond walked against Tommy Hunter in the ninth, stole second, moved to third on den Dekker’s bunt and scored on Taylor’s single to right.

Blake Treinin, Felipe Rivero, Casey Janssen and Drew Storen combined to allow just one hit in the fourth inning. Storen pitched the ninth for his 26th save.

The Orioles need a win on Sunday to finish the season’s first half with a record above .500.

“I always say at the break ask me how are season is going so far. No matter what we’re still going to be – our division is so tight – it’s still up for grabs. Obviously going into the break with a W is always good. But the second half is going to be real important because whoever gets hot is gonna probably win the division,” Jones said.

NOTES: Max Scherzer (9-7, 2.12) faces Wei-Yin Chen (4-4, 2.82) on Sunday in the final game before the four-day All-Star break. … The Orioles have fifth sellouts this season.


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Trumbo homers twice, drives in 5 as Orioles beat Rangers 9-6

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Trumbo homers twice, drives in 5 as Orioles beat Rangers 9-6

 Mark Trumbo could have looked around the diamond at his Orioles teammates and wondered, "Who are these guys?"

With veterans Adam Jones and Chris Davis out of the starting lineup, Trumbo alone represented experience on a young, struggling team.

The slugger homered twice and drove in five runs, and Baltimore beat the Texas Rangers 9-6 in a back-and-forth game Sunday to avoid a four-game sweep.

"There's a few of us guys that have been around a little longer than most," Trumbo said. "The production comes and goes, but the mindset is the big thing, and I think these guys are doing a good job."

Entering the series, Trumbo hadn't gone deep since July 9. He completed the four games 7 for 16 with three homers and nine RBIs as Baltimore totaled 21 runs.

Austin Wynns and Jonathan Villar also homered for the Orioles.

Trumbo singled home a run in the first inning. His two-run homer in the third put Baltimore ahead to stay at 6-5 against starter Drew Hutchison (1-2), who was making his Rangers debut.

"Just pitch execution, poor command, too many balls up in the zone," Hutchison said. "When you do things like that, those are the results that you're going to have."

Both of Trumbo's homers came with two strikes.

"I've been getting to two strikes a lot lately and still getting some hits," he said. "I hit a changeup (from Hutchison), and I put some good wood on it."

The teams had scored in every half-inning before that, with the lead changing hands in four of those.

Trumbo left the game after his two-run homer against Matt Moore in the seventh.

"(Trumbo) almost didn't play today," Orioles manager Buck Showalter. "His knee's been a little sore. I noticed running around the bases on the second home run."

Another difference was Baltimore's beleaguered bullpen, which allowed only one run and one hit in 7 1/3 innings.

Tanner Scott (2-2), the second of six Orioles pitchers, shut out Texas for 2 1/3 innings, which tied his longest major league outing. He relieved starter Yefry Ramirez with the bases loaded and two outs in the second and struck out Ronald Guzman.

Mychal Givens retired the final four batters for his second save.

Jace Peterson led off the game with a single and scored on Trumbo's single for a short-lived 1-0 lead.

Ramirez retired the first two Rangers hitters but gave up a triple to Elvis Andrus. After two walks loaded the bases, Robinson Chirinos singled home two runs.

The Orioles regained the lead at 4-2 in the second on a three-run homer by Wynns, the No. 9 batter.

The Rangers scored three runs in the bottom half on Shin-Soo Choo's sacrifice fly, Andrus' groundout and a broken-bat single by Joey Gallo for a 5-4 advantage.

Gallo and Rougned Odor homered in each of the first three games of the series, but their streaks were stopped on Sunday.


Orioles: Davis didn't play for a second straight game. Showalter said, "He's banged up a little bit. We're going to give him the benefit of another day and the off day Monday." ... Showalter said it's likely that OF Craig Gentry, who has missed six weeks because of a fractured rib, will begin a rehab assignment Tuesday at Double-A Bowie. ... INF Steve Wilkerson (strained left oblique), who hasn't played since July 1, could go on a rehab assignment Thursday.


To make room for Hutchison on the roster, the Rangers optioned RHP Austin Bibens-Dirkx to Triple-A Round Rock for the third time this season.


Andrus extended his hitting streak to 16 games, equaling a career best. It's also the longest current run in the majors.


Orioles: Begin a three-game series at Tampa Bay on Tuesday. Alex Cobb (3-14, 5.83 ERA) will start against Rays newcomer Tyler Glasnow (1-2, 4.27).

Rangers: LHP Martin Perez (2-4, 6.50) pitches Monday as Texas hosts Seattle and LHP Wade LeBlanc (6-2, 3.95) to begin a three-game series.

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Adam Jones helps Little League team with $8.5K donation

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Adam Jones helps Little League team with $8.5K donation

Adam Jones continues to be one of baseball's Good Dudes. 

Jones, who's been recognized before for his philanthropic efforts around Baltimore, made headlines recently when he donated $8.5 thousand dollars to the Mamie Johnson Little League team. 

Mamie Johnson are headed to the Mid-Atlantic Finals of the Little League World Series qualifying tournament but needed $10k in travel assistance to get there. That's where Jones, who orginally learned of the team on Twitter, stepped in: 

When asked about his donation, Jones said, "I want to see the next generation get an opportunity to succeed. Me being a black man trying to integrate more African-Americans into baseball, this was a no-brainer.''

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