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May 14, 2024 3:02 am

O’s look to get bats going, avoid third straight loss

rutschman

The Baltimore Orioles can usually count on offense.

In fact, when the runs aren’t coming it seems almost alarming for the Orioles. They’ll try to quiet the alarm bells after a couple of sluggish days for their bats when they take on the visiting Toronto Blue Jays on Tuesday night.

The Orioles have lost two in a row following Monday night’s 3-2, 10-inning setback to Toronto when they managed only three hits. Two of those were solo home runs by Adley Rutschman.

“Bottom line is we didn’t score enough runs,” Baltimore manager Brandon Hyde said. “Just not enough offense.”

If the Orioles are to get their offense going, they will have to do so against right-hander Chris Bassitt (3-5, 5.06 ERA), scheduled to take the mound for the Blue Jays. Bassitt, who has pitched better of late, will be opposed by right-hander Kyle Bradish (0-0, 1.86) — who likewise is coming off an improved showing.

As for the Blue Jays, they might be able to use the uplifting result as the seed to bigger things.

“You don’t want to say May 13 is a huge game, but this was (huge),” Blue Jays manager John Schneider said.

Toronto hasn’t won back-to-back games since April 28 and 29. Its only consecutive road victories came April 19 and 20 at San Diego.

Corbin Burnes was Baltimore’s starter in the series opener. He said the Blue Jays can’t be taken lightly.

“Their record isn’t toward the top like ours and some other teams, but that’s a tough team,” Burnes said. “You saw it (Monday night). Every (at-bat) felt like it was a tough out. … Definitely what you sign up for when you get in division games.”

Toronto’s successful result Monday had additional meaning with illness hitting the roster. Starting pitcher Jose Berrios said afterward that earlier in the morning he wasn’t certain that he would make it to the mound.

Even Rutschman’s first career two-homer game was dulled by the defeat.

“I think I’d just rather win,” Rutschman said. “I think everyone’s just focused on team stuff. Obviously, the individual stuff’s always great, but I think everyone here is just focused on the next day.”

Still, the Orioles count on Rutschman’s bat and others around him in the lineup have been putting up strong power numbers. He might as well join them.

“I take the same approach that I always do and try to get my swing off on good pitches,” he said. “I stay with my process.”

Bradish will be making his third start of the season after missing all of April as he rehabbed from an injury. His five-inning stint last Wednesday at Washington included nine strikeouts.

Bradish faced the Blue Jays seven times — second most of any opponent — across the first two seasons of his career. He is 1-3 with a 5.25 ERA in 36 innings in those outings.

Bassitt is coming off last Wednesday’s solid outing at Philadelphia, where he picked up the victory by going 6 1/3 innings while giving up two runs.

That was Bassitt’s lone road success this year. He’s 0-3 in his other three road outings.

More good news for Bassitt is he has gone back-to-back games without allowing a home run for the first time this season.

Bassitt is 3-2 with a 4.79 ERA in six career starts against the Orioles. Both losses came last year during his first season with the Blue Jays.

–Field Level Media

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