MINNEAPOLIS -- For four innings on Sunday, Alex Cobb was looking like the steady veteran starter the Orioles believed they signed during Spring Training, as he breezed through the Twins' batting order.A blister then formed on his pitching hand and derailed perhaps Cobb's best outing with Baltimore.Cobb surrendered a pair
MINNEAPOLIS -- For four innings on Sunday, Alex Cobb was looking like the steady veteran starter the Orioles believed they signed during Spring Training, as he breezed through the Twins' batting order.
A blister then formed on his pitching hand and derailed perhaps Cobb's best outing with Baltimore.
Cobb surrendered a pair of two-run homers and then left the game in the sixth without recording an out in the Orioles' 10-1 loss in Minnesota on Sunday.
"It was really probably the most quality executed pitches I've thrown this year with the changeup, being able to mix offspeed and out-of-the-zone fastballs on both sides of the plate," Cobb said. "I was feeling really good."
Cobb (2-11) gave up five runs (four earned) in five-plus innings. He walked one batter and struck out five. After a bunt hit by the Twins' Logan Morrison, Baltimore catcher Caleb Joseph called for a trainer and after a short exam, Cobb was taken out of the game.
Cobb said he's dealt with blisters in the past and considers this current one a "short-term issue." Cobb and manager Buck Showalter both said they believe the right-hander will make his next start.
"Tried to cool down a lot between innings with some ammonia and wet towels and stuff, and just a hot spot started popping up," Cobb said. "That last inning, I could feel it kind of affecting my pitches quite a bit."
Manny Machado had two hits and Chris Davis homered in the ninth for the Orioles, who went 0-6 on the road trip and have lost 13 of their past 14 games.
"We didn't know anything about it. He was pitching really well," Showalter said. "Alex was really good, obviously, first four innings. We're just not scoring runs. It creates a lot of pressure on the pitchers to be perfect."
Cobb allowed three hits over the first four innings before running into trouble in the fifth. He walked Max Kepler, then gave up a homer to Mitch Garver.
The game unraveled in the sixth. James Dozier led off with a double and Eduardo Escobar followed with a home run. Morrison's bunt single started another rally and ended Cobb's day.
Paul Fry replaced Cobb and gave up four runs on three hits while getting just two outs.
Minnesota had five straight hits and seven in the inning while scoring eight runs. Dozier capped the inning with a homer as Jake Odorizzi (4-6) earned the win for the Twins.
"They seem to happen quite a bit, but a lot of bad things happen when you play bad baseball like we have been," Cobb said of the big inning. "When you go back and look at the things that have happened here, you're going to see a lot of things that we're doing that winning teams aren't."
Baltimore started the game with the second-fewest runs per game in the Majors and missed chances to break through against Odorizzi.
Machado and Mark Trumbo both singled in the first, but were stranded when Davis was called out on strikes. Machado and Trumbo were both on in the sixth, as well, when Davis was caught looking to end the inning.
YOU GOTTA SEE THIS
The Twins were threatening to score in the second inning with two runners on, but Machado made a diving grab of a liner by Garver to end the inning.
HE SAID IT
"We believe in each other. We believe in what we can do. Things aren't going our way. We're down but we got to keep trusting ourselves. We got to believe. Just like we lose a lot, we can go on a streak and win 20 games too." -- Second baseman Jonathan Schoop
The Orioles open their homestand with a doubleheader Monday against the Yankees. The first game, scheduled for 4:05 p.m. ET, is a makeup from May 31. The second game will start 30 minutes after the conclusion of the first game. Right-hander Jimmy Yacabonis will be recalled from Triple-A Norfolk to start the first game. Yacabonis has an 8.53 ERA in three Major League appearances this season. He'll be opposed by Carsten Sabathia (6-3, 3.02 ERA). Rookie right-hander Yefry Ramirez (0-2, 2.51 ERA) will start the second game. Ramirez started and allowed two runs (one earned) in five innings in a loss at Philadelphia on Wednesday. Luis Cessa (0-1, 5.00 ERA) will start the nightcap for New York.
Brian Hall is a contributor to MLB.com based in Minneapolis.