MINNEAPOLIS -- Jonathan Schoop hopes he's found a good approach at the plate to turn around his season for the Orioles. Baltimore's starters would enjoy any more run support they can get.Schoop hit two solo homers but the Orioles were unable to support another strong start from Andrew Cashner in
MINNEAPOLIS -- Jonathan Schoop hopes he's found a good approach at the plate to turn around his season for the Orioles. Baltimore's starters would enjoy any more run support they can get.
Schoop hit two solo homers but the Orioles were unable to support another strong start from Andrew Cashner in a 5-2 loss to the Twins at Target Field on Thursday night.
"It felt good," Schoop said. "I feel like I put my work in and it started showing up again. I'm looking forward to keep it up like that and for us to start winning."
Schoop is 5-for-12 on the three-game road trip after his second multi-homer game of the season followed Wednesday's two-hit game. He entered Thursday's game hitting .202 with eight home runs after connecting for a career-high 32 homers last season.
His first home run on Thursday was a line shot to the second deck in left field that traveled 404 feet and had an exit velocity of 103.5 mph, per Statcast™. His second homer reached the bullpen in left-center field in the seventh and brought Baltimore within 3-2 of the Twins.
All of Schoop's 10 home runs this season have been solo homers.
"He's taking some steps forward," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "Like I told him, it's not going to happen overnight. Just want him to stay, like I said, understanding what's a good day. It's not always two home runs. It's good deep at-bats and really trying to lay off some pitches that he's been passing. That's been our biggest challenge is we're swinging at a lot of breaking balls out of the zone."
Cashner (2-9) gave up three runs -- two earned -- in six innings, his 10th quality start of the season for Baltimore. But Cashner entered Thursday with the third-lowest run support in all of baseball at 2.73 runs per game.
"It's a little bit of frustration, but everybody wants to do it," Schoop said. "So, it's not like we didn't want to score for him. I hope things start changing."
Schoop was the only one to strike for the Orioles against Minnesota starter Aaron Slegers (1-0), who was making his first Major League start of the year. Baltimore had three hits in six innings off Slegers, with the only run coming on Schoop's home run in the fifth.
Cashner posted his fifth quality start in his last six outings, with the only non-quality start in that span coming when he didn't return after a 2-hour, 43-minute rain delay on June 20 at Washington.
"For me, you got to constantly work to get better," Cashner said. "Tonight, I definitely thought I probably had the worst stuff I've had this season, but I thought I just grinded throughout the game. When you're not scoring runs, I feel like I keep my mind sharp on what I want to do out there and thinking pitch to pitch. When you have a big lead sometimes, you don't do that as well, I think."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Cashner might have been able to hold Minnesota down more had he been able to corral a throw from first baseman Chris Davis in the third. After Jake Cave doubled to lead off the inning, Bobby Wilson dribbled a ball to Davis at first. Cashner couldn't catch the high flip from Davis and Cave came around to score on the play for the first run of the game.
Eddie Rosario added a one-out single to left to score Wilson.
The Orioles have 41 quality starts this season, which entered Thursday tied for fifth in the American League and seventh in the Majors. But their starters are last in the Majors in run support as Baltimore is second in baseball in the fewest runs per game.
MITEL REPLAY OF THE DAY
Cashner kept his quality start intact after a replay review in the sixth. Max Kepler hit a ball deep to left field that bounced up toward the fence. Left fielder Trey Mancini fielded the ball off the wall and threw the ball into the infield as Jorge Polanco scored from first base.
But Showalter asked for a review, which showed the ball hit off the railing in the stands for a ground-rule double, sending Polanco back to third base. Cashner eventually got out of the inning without allowing Polanco to score.
Baltimore gets a boost as right-hander Dylan Bundy (6-7, 3.75 ERA) returns from the disabled list to make Friday's 8:10 p.m. ET start in Minnesota. Bundy has been on the DL since June 26 with a left ankle sprain. He won his last start on June 23 against Atlanta with two runs allowed in 6 1/3 innings and eight strikeouts. Bundy has five quality starts in his last six outings. The Twins counter with right-hander Lance Lynn (5-7, 5.49).
Brian Hall is a contributor to MLB.com.