Orioles pound Red Sox, 11-2, backing another Kyle Bradish quality start for 6th straight win – Boston Herald

Before the Orioles played their first game at Fenway Park since the opening series of the season, manager Brandon Hyde remarked on how far his team had come in the five months since.

Few players who made that initial trip to Boston have blossomed as much in that time as the right-hander Baltimore sent to the mound for Friday night’s series opener against the Red Sox. In an 11-2 victory, second-year starter Kyle Bradish continued to state his case to be the Orioles’ Game 1 starter come the postseason.

Thanks to Bradish’s fifth straight quality start and offensive support that included home runs from Ryan O’Hearn and Adley Rutschman, Baltimore’s lead over the Tampa Bay Rays in the American League East remained at four games.

“He’s been a staple,” O’Hearn said. “Every time he takes the ball, he’s giving us a quality start, it seems like. He’s going deep in the game, obviously the stuff is electric, and just the way he attacks the zone and keeps the game moving. Lets the position players kind of lock into his rhythm and make plays behind him. He’s special, obviously. I love when Kyle’s pitching. We need him to keep being Kyle the rest of the way out.”

Regardless of divisional standings, a playoff berth for the Orioles (89-51) could be guaranteed by the end of their upcoming homestand, with the victory dropping their magic number to clinch a postseason spot to seven, according to MLB.

They have won six straight — recording at least 10 hits in each game for their longest such streak in almost 12 years — and need one win over the next two days for a seventh straight series victory. Friday’s win also ensured an 85th straight multi-game series without being swept, extending Baltimore’s AL record.

Before Friday, half of Bradish’s outings against the Red Sox (72-69) had been disastrous. Three times in six career starts opposite Boston, the 26-year-old lasted fewer than three innings while giving up at least six runs. In all, he had allowed 26 earned runs in 25 career innings facing the Red Sox, giving up 13 in four innings over two starts in Boston.

Bradish said after his previous start, his first in his home state of Arizona, that he felt nerves pitching in front of so many friends and family, but seeing his next outing lined up in Boston left him slightly uneasy. He blitzed through the first three frames Friday, retiring the first eight Boston batters before Connor Wong’s clean single up the middle. It was the only runner Bradish allowed through five innings.

“I saw probably as dominating of a five innings as I’ve seen from him,” Hyde said. “Every pitch working, both the curveball and the slider with great life to his 96 mile-an-hour fastball, good two-seamer, not a whole lot of hard contact.

“Through five, that was about as dominating as you can be.”

O’Hearn provided a lead with a fourth-inning solo shot; the home run was the 50th of O’Hearn’s career, with teammates in the Orioles’ bullpen tracking down the ball for him.

“Hopefully, there’s a lot more to come,” said O’Hearn, who leads the club with an .847 OPS in his first year as an Oriole.

Baltimore added on in the sixth. Cedric Mullins drove in two on a double and scored on a single from Austin Hays, who later came home on Rutschman’s bases-loaded sacrifice fly. The five-run lead was short-lived as Bradish surrendered a solo shot by Wong, the first home run he’s allowed in six starts, and an RBI double to Justin Turner in the sixth. But he completed the frame to end his night, going exactly six innings for the fifth straight start and giving up exactly two runs for the fourth time in that span. Bradish’s nine strikeouts were one shy of his season high, set in a June start at Milwaukee.

Given his previous struggles in Boston, “This one felt really good,” Bradish said. The outing left him with a 3.03 ERA — the rounded mark he’s carried after four straight starts. In his past 18 starts, Bradish has a 2.58 ERA, with 113 strikeouts against 26 walks in 108 1/3 innings.

“I think it’s just a steady mix of all my pitches, commanding it, minimizing damage, not really walking guys,” Bradish said. “That one helps.”

After Jacob Webb pitched a clean bottom of the seventh, the Orioles got back the two runs Bradish allowed. Rutschman’s 18th home run curved around Pesky’s Pole in right field, and Gunnar Henderson followed with a triple and scored on a wild pitch. The phenoms each drove in a run in the top of the ninth as well, with Henderson’s RBI single leaving him a home run shy of the cycle, before Aaron Hicks scored both with a hit to center.

DL Hall and Jorge López worked a scoreless inning each to seal the victory, the former getting help from a sensational catch in right from Ryan McKenna.

Orioles at Red Sox

Saturday, 4:10 p.m.


Radio: 97.9 FM, 101.5 FM, 1090 AM


Source link

Leave a Comment