BALTIMORE -- Orioles right-hander Dylan Bundy was absolutely stellar -- pitching his first career complete game and recording a career-high 12 strikeouts -- in Tuesday night's 4-0 victory over the Mariners. But a bunt single stood in the way of Bundy making baseball history.With one out in the fourth, the
BALTIMORE -- Orioles right-hander Dylan Bundy was absolutely stellar -- pitching his first career complete game and recording a career-high 12 strikeouts -- in Tuesday night's 4-0 victory over the Mariners. But a bunt single stood in the way of Bundy making baseball history.
With one out in the fourth, the Orioles employed a defensive shift on Kyle Seager. Third baseman Manny Machado moved over toward shortstop leaving the third-base line wide open. On a 1-1 pitch, Seager squared and laid down a bunt toward third that -- because of the shift -- only Bundy could potentially field. Bundy tried to bare-hand the ball, but he could not field it cleanly, giving the Mariners their only hit of the game.
"I just bobbled it, and you know, even if I caught it cleanly, I don't even know if I had a chance there, I wasn't sure," Bundy said. "I bobbled it, so I didn't have a chance."
According to Statcast™, the Mariners put just two balls in play all night that had a hit probability of at least 50 percent based on exit velocity/launch angle.
"You don't know it at the time. We're just trying to get something going," Mariners manager Scott Servais said. "I thought it was a smart play by Kyle. They had the shift on and he put it in a good spot. It was a smart play. We just didn't get anything going after that."
Bundy's special night did not come easily. He landed in Baltimore around midnight local time on Monday night after spending time on the bereavement list following the death of his grandmother. Then, Bundy waited through a 32-minute rain delay, only to pitch nine stellar innings of one-hit baseball.
"Sometimes, you forget that Dylan lost his mother and his grandmother at a young age, and sometimes life forces you to grow up," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "This was a guy who was as good a high school prospect as a lot of people ever saw, and then all of a sudden that's taken away from you with elbow surgery, and you've got to make some decisions whether you're going to push through it. Sometimes, it makes us a lot stronger when you get through those things."
Bundy's one-hitter was the 40th overall and 33rd individual one-hitter in franchise history. It was the Orioles' first one-hitter since Jason Hammel's gem on June 16, 2012.
"It means a lot, mainly just to go out there," Bundy said. "But me and [Castillo] had a great game plan again, behind the plate, and then of course, the defense was outstanding."
Bundy's 22 swinging strikes are a career high, but the success he is having on the mound isn't a rare occurrence for this month. Buoyed by extra rest, Bundy has posted a 2.00 ERA in August with three 10-plus strikeout outings. He is getting hot at the perfect time for the Orioles to make a postseason run.
"Well, I've noticed the second half I'm getting a few more days in between starts than I did in the first half, and I think I'm starting to see it now," Bundy said. "My body feels great still, and I'm just blessed to be out there."
Mandy Bell is a reporter for MLB.com based in Baltimore.