O’s start September right
Bundy, bullpen allow Yankees just two hits; rejuvenated lineup slugs four home runs
Going back to the first days of spring training, Orioles sluggers were asked about the capabilities of their power-packed lineup. Since then, they’ve put up historic home run numbers, but a team built to outslug its opponents went into the season’s final full month clinging to a playoff spot.
The Orioles entered their first game of September on Friday night against the New York Yankees going in the wrong direction. They had been wildly inconsistent, four games under .500 since the All-Star break, losers of 11 of their past 15 games against division opponents, heading into the series.
A team seemingly in need of a life raft, the Orioles set sail into September by putting together the kind of victory that’s been rare in the second half. They combined their destructive power with strong pitching in an 8-0 shellacking of the new-look Yankees for one of their most complete wins this season.
They hit four homers, including three in a four-batter span in a sixth-run second inning.
“I’ve got a really good seat, and I don’t ever take it for granted, the things that they do against the best pitchers in the world,” Orioles starter pitcher Dylan Bundy allowed two hits in 52⁄ innings. He struck out five and walked four in throwing 97 pitches. Tonight, 7:05 TV: MASN Radio: 105.7 FM INSIDE
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Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. “It’s not like they’re sneaking up on anybody, either. So it’s just been a consistent threat we’ve had all year. It’s who we are, and that’s OK. We’ll score enough runs.”
In recent days, that hasn’t been the case. The Orioles’ output Friday was their highest scoring in their past eight games. The difference was holding the Yankees to two hits, the fewest the Orioles have allowed all season. And as the Orioles continued to draw a blueprint for right-hander Dylan Bundy — who has shown signs of fatigue over his previous three starts — the 23-year-old provided his team with 52⁄ scoreless innings. Three relievers followed with 31⁄ innings of hitless ball.
“You’re not going to be working on all cylinders at all times,” said designated hitter Pedro Alvarez, whose second-inning homer was the Orioles’ first of the night and gave the club six 20-homer hitters this season. “The teams that have the most success are the teams that can do that more often throughout the year. That’s what we try to do every time we go out there. We know it’s not going to be a hundred percent of the time, but anytime you can get the ball rolling on all ends, that’s usually the recipe for a ‘W’ at the end of the day. Obviously, a day like today is a lot of fun, and we hope to have a lot more coming up.”
A Yankees team suddenly in the wild-card race that outscored the Orioles by 13 runs in three games at Yankee Stadium last weekend was on the other end of a rout Friday night. All six runs in the second inning scored with two outs in the inning, and three scored after Yankees starter Chad Green left with right elbow pain.
Center fielder Adam Jones — who hadn’t played in a week because of a hamstring injury — served as the catalyst, hitting a two-out bloop single to center off Green that brought in the game’s first run and set the stage for what was to follow.
“It’s just the presence of him running out to center field to start the game,” Showalter said. “He comes in with a lot of time off and whacks a breaking ball into center field for a base hit [in the first inning]. It’s kind of like ‘Adam’s back.’ ... We’re trying like heck to get a chance to roll the dice in
The Orioles celebrate after defeating the Yankees, 8-0, and narrowing their deficit in the AL East to three games behind the Blue Jays.