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Hess dazzles with 7 K's in loss to Blue Jays

August 22, 2018

TORONTO -- David Hess was dominant for seven innings, but he made one big mistake, and the Orioles' offense couldn't help him out in a 6-0 loss to the Blue Jays on Wednesday afternoon at Rogers Centre.Hess allowed just one hit through 6 2/3 innings, but with two outs in

TORONTO -- David Hess was dominant for seven innings, but he made one big mistake, and the Orioles' offense couldn't help him out in a 6-0 loss to the Blue Jays on Wednesday afternoon at Rogers Centre.
Hess allowed just one hit through 6 2/3 innings, but with two outs in the seventh inning, he hung a 2-2 slider that Kendrys Morales smacked for a solo homer -- the go-ahead run for the Blue Jays -- and Hess's lone hiccup.
"We were trying to go back-foot slider, and I just didn't get through it as well as I needed to," Hess said. "[It] just kind of spun in there, and he's a good hitter who's really hot right now, so that's not the guy you can do that to."
The 25-year-old Hess was perfect through four innings before Morales led off the fifth inning with a ground ball single to right field that squeaked by Jonathan Villar playing in the shift. He quickly recovered and retired the next three batters.
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"I felt like [fastball command] was something that was there today," Hess said. "I felt like I was able to stay under control a little bit better than I have in a few outings this year."
Hess allowed three hits and one run with a season-high seven strikeouts in seven innings pitched, but he was shackled with the loss, his seventh straight losing decision dating back to May 25. He threw 70 percent of his pitches for strikes, up seven percent from his season average.
"[Hess] had a good delivery, stayed in it the whole time," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "He had a lot of pitches at his disposal, and when you've got a good delivery, it kind of lends to that kind of arsenal that you can use. That was fun to watch."
Miguel Castro came in to pitch the eighth, but the 23-year-old reliever couldn't record an out against the bottom of the Blue Jays' lineup. He surrendered a leadoff single to Teoscar Hernandez, then walked Danny Jansen, before Richard Urena hit an RBI double to give Toronto a 2-0 lead. Jansen scored on a wild pitch, then Devon Travis got to Castro for a three-run homer before Showalter decided to pull the righty.
"Unfortunately it wasn't a good day for me," Castro said through a translator. "I was not able to command any of my pitches, they were not working for me today, so unfortunately, I wasn't able to help my team."
Paul Fry came in and retired the next three batters to record his third straight clean inning.
Baltimore mustered just one hit against Blue Jays starter Thomas Pannone, who was making his first Major League start. The lone hit came from Trey Mancini, breaking up Pannone's no-hit bid in the seventh inning. Pannone allowed two walks and struck out three in seven innings.

"[Pannone] was rolling there for a while." Mancini said. "I was impressed by him today, I know he's about 88-89 [mph] on the gun, but that thing played up a lot. … He had a pretty good changeup, too, that he kept low in the zone."
In the eighth, the Orioles put runners on first and second with one out against reliever Dennis Tepera, but they couldn't convert and were ultimately shut out for the second time in their last four games. It was the 12th time the O's have been shut out this season.
Orioles can't convert in seventh: The Orioles ended Pannone's no-hit bid in the seventh inning when Mancini led off with a single to left field. He moved to third when Adam Jones hit a fly ball that bounced off Hernandez's glove in left field for a two-bag error. But Baltimore couldn't cash in either run. Timothy Beckham hit a groundout to third base, then Craig Gentry hit a weak ground ball to Pannone that couldn't score Mancini. Renato Nunez followed with a fly out to to end the inning.

"We had second and third and nobody out, but you get in that mode of trying to hit a three-run homer," Showalter said. "It might have been a whole different situation if we push a run across like we should have."
The Orioles finished the year 0-10 in Toronto and are 1-12 against the Blue Jays with two series remaining this season.
Nunez helped keep the game close in the seventh when he robbed Travis and Russell Martin -- to end the inning -- with diving stops.

"I think pitching is just the art of throwing off the time of the hitters, so any time that you can shift their eye levels and kind of work them in and out, the ability to execute those pitches is what you want to do, that's the name of the game." -- Hess, on working up and down in the zone against Blue Jays hitters
The Orioles will have an off-day Thursday before Alex Cobb (4-15, 5.09 ERA) takes the mound Friday at 7:05 p.m. ET at Camden Yards against the Yankees. Cobb has pitched to a 2.95 ERA over his last nine outings dating back to the start of July. He allowed one run in six innings in his only start against the Yankees this season. Carsten Sabathia (7-4, 3.32) will come off the 10-day disabled list to face the Orioles. He threw six scoreless innings in his most recent start before going on the DL with right knee inflammation.

** Aaron Rose ** is a reporter for based in Toronto.