Castillo’s power surge lifts O’s again
ORIOLES 7, BLUE JAYS 5
baltimore — For the second straight night, Welington Castillo made winners out of the Baltimore Orioles.
The irrepressible backstop homered again to give the hosts a 7-5 win over the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday night before a sellout crowd of 45,416 at Camden Yards. This time, it was a three-run home run in the seventh inning that erased the possibility of another bullpen-generated loss.
Castillo’s home run was his fourth on the season and his third in the past two games. On Friday night, he hit one in the sixth inning to tie the game at three and another in the 10th inning to end it.
This one scored first baseman Chris Davis, who singled against the shift to snap an 0-for-10 skid, and designated hitter Mark Trumbo, who turned an 0-2 count into a full count before stinging a single up the middle.
It also erased a 5-4 deficit that came about after starter Kevin Gausman left with a 4-2 lead after six innings. Left-hander Richard Bleier had a runner reach on an error by shortstop J.J. Hardy and another on a walk, and righthander Mychal Givens, who relieved him, allowed a three-run home run to Toronto slugger Jose Bautista.
Badly needing a good outing to turn his season around, Gausman got just that to stem some of the concern about his early-season struggles.
He allowed 10 hits but only the last two — a sixth-inning home run by first baseman Justin Smoak and a double to the following batter, second baseman Devon Travis — went for extra bases. Combine that with just one walk, and Gausman gave up two runs with five strikeouts, lowering his ERA from 7.19 to 6.65.
Third baseman Manny Machado gave Gausman and the Orioles a spectacular lift at the plate and in the field.
After a first-inning single through the left side, Machado unloaded on a cutter from Blue Jays starter Mike Bolsinger for his 10th home run of the year, a long drive to left field. In the following half-inning, with a man on first and one out, he skidded on his knees to snare a hard grounder down the third base line, then spun to start a double play at second base.
Darren O’Day worked a clean eighth inning for the Orioles, and deputy closer Brad Brach earned his ninth save in 12 opportunities.
Welington Castillo, left, returns to the dugout after belting a threerun homer in the seventh inning to put Baltimore ahead for good.