O’s take series from Jays, 1.5 back of Wild Card spot

The Orioles have used August as a spring board to further along their attack on the AL Wild Card standings.

Making a strong push, they continued their improbable play by visiting Toronto for one of the most important series of the season.

What would transpire would be a series victory that saw the Orioles pick up another game in the Wild Card standings, while hurting one of the Wild Card leaders in the process.

Though Toronto would win the final game, it came after the Blue Jays had lost five straight against the Orioles and now are behind in the season series. The O’s lost 14 of 19 games last season to Toronto.

Game one saw the Orioles receive another strong performance from Kyle Bradish. Though he wasn’t a factor in the decision, he once again put the Orioles in position to win.

The rookie right-hander would finish with 4.2 innings, allowing three runs. He struck out five and walked four.

Bradish in his last four starts has 25 innings pitched, nine earned runs (3.24 ERA) and 21 strikeouts to nine walks, putting the Orioles in position to win in each game.

The hero of game one though was Ryan McKenna, who collected his first three-hit game, knocking in and scoring a run as well.

Ryan Mountcastle took his role of the Mountie seriously, hitting his 16th home run of the season. He has hit five of his 16 home runs against Toronto this year and now has 12 homers and 25 RBIs since 2021 against the Jays.

Game two saw Vlad Guerrero Jr. hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the first, but that would be all the offense Toronto would muster.

Cedric Mullins and Adley Rutschman went back-to-back in the fifth to tie the game, while Ramón Urías and McKenna added RBI singles that would be the difference in the game.

Dean Kremer (5-4) won for the second time in three starts by matching his career high of seven innings pitched.

He allowed the two first-inning runs and shut down the Jays the rest of the way with six strikeouts and timely defense. The Orioles also reached their highest win total since 2017.

Game three was quick and turned out on the wrong end for the Birds.

Ross Stripling came off the IL to pitch six innings of perfect ball, before Mullins broke it up in the seventh.

Though Austin Voth would allow no runs on two hits in six innings of work, it wasn’t enough, as the Orioles fell 6-1 to close the series.

The Baltimore Battery ❌-FACTOR heading into the series was the ability of the Orioles’ offense to score runs for their starters.

In games one and two, the offense combined for 11 runs on 15 hits, including three home runs. This led to two victories, which would win the series for Baltimore.

Unfortunately, the offense went to sleep for most of the third game and fell victim again to little hitting and hardly any scoring.

The O’s will take the series victory and continue their assault on the Wild Card leaders. Playoff fever is starting to fill Birdland, and the Orioles are doing all they can to fight for a birth.

They continue their surge with a make-up game Thursday against the Chicago Cubs. Will they improve on their 10-5 August record or lose ground in an interleague battle?

First pitch from Oriole Park at Camden Yards is set for 3:05 p.m. EST, with Spenser Watkins on the mound for the Birds. You can catch the game on MASN or on your local Orioles Radio Network station.

What do you think of this series win and make-up game match-up against the Cubs? Let us know in the comments below! And make sure to follow The Baltimore Battery on Facebook and Twitter, and use the hashtag #baltimorebattery when sharing our content!

Like Stephen’s content? Follow him on Twitter – @SrHeckman

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