BALTIMORE (AP) – Dean Kramer took a shutout in the seventh inning before eventually giving way to the Baltimore Bullpen.
This season, it should be a very comfortable feeling.
“It’s been fun watching them all season,” Kramer said. “They’ve got a little bit of everything. You’ve got everything you can think of. Except we don’t have a submarine. That’s about it.”
Kramer held an impressive seventh and Felix Bautista held through a dicey ninth to give the Orioles a 1-0 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Friday night.
Ramon Urias scored the only run of the game in sixth place after the Orioles missed several chances earlier in the game. That was enough for the Baltimore team that has recently emerged as a surprise postseason contender.
Kramer (4-3) gave four hits and took two hits. He survived a first and third, one-out jam in second when Cal Mitchell bounced in a double play. Kramer then did not allow a baserunner for the next four innings.
After K’Brien Hayes hit a one-off double in the seventh, Kramer turned the game into the bullpen, which again came for the Orioles. Sionel Perez got five outs and Bautista took the ninth for his fourth defense.
The Orioles traded Jorge Lopez to Minnesota close shortly before the deadline, but Bautista has been outstanding this season and seems to be able to fill the role. He allowed a single each by Ben Gammel and a nine-pitch walk by Hayes. Then rookie O’Neill Cruz hit the swing and Kevin Newman looked down.
Mitch Keller (3-8) allowed one run and eight hits in six innings. He has 1.74 ERA in his last five starts.
Baltimore scored 2 for 15 with the men in the scoring position. The Orioles kept the leadoff man in each of the first four innings, and had a runner on the second in three of them, with no dismissals.
Ryan Mountcastle plays a double game with the men in second and third place to finish first. Another double play in the fourth derailed the rally after the first two batsmen reached base.
“Usually when you waste too early, you’re not expecting anything good,” said Baltimore manager Brandon Hyde. “Luckily for us, Dean Kramer — I mean, that was his best outing of the year.”
Anthony Santander opened the bottom of the sixth with a double, and after Mountcastle failed to pursue it with a groundout, rookie Teryn Vavra returned for an infield single off Keller. Uriás then hit a helicopter that went into left field and put the Orioles 1–0 ahead.
The start of the game was delayed by 109 minutes, and the rain stopped after the game started, but a crowd of 25,613 were cheered, perhaps cheered by the Baltimore team, which has now won 31 of their last 47 matches.
Umpire Carlos Torres had come down with a non-COVID illness before the game, so a three-man squad was in charge. This became an issue when the batsmen attempted to check their swing and there was no ump positioned near the third to call.
The Pittsburgh dugout erupted when Baltimore’s Brett Phillips – batting with loaded bases and two outs in the eighth – was decided to be put on a pitch by Yohan Ramirez. Pirates manager Derek Shelton was kicked out and said he later disagreed that the play could be appealed to another umpire.
“I know it’s very challenging, but I don’t understand how we’re going to have a guy in the middle of the field for that call. I don’t think it’s right,” Shelton said. Looks like when you have a three-umpire crew, it should be the home plate umpire’s call.”
Philips popped out.
Both teams were coming off an impressive three-game sweep – Baltimore against Texas and Pittsburgh against Milwaukee.
on a roll
Vavra had three hits and is now 6 for 13 in his short time in the big leagues. His second-inning single made him the first Baltimore rookie to reach seven straight plate appearances safely since Jerry Hairston Jr. in 1999, according to Elias Sports Bureau information provided by the Orioles.
That streak ended when he reached an error in the fourth, but then added two more singles.
Hyde said, ‘His at-bat is very good. “I am very impressed with the ability to take the pitches off the plate. I love the short swing.”
Orioles: OF Austin Hays (side) did not play.
Baltimore sent Austin Voth (1-1) to the mound against Pittsburgh’s JT Brubaker (2-9) on Saturday. The Orioles will have a pregame ceremony to mark the 30th anniversary of Camden Yards.
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