In their series finale against the Mets, the Orioles fell short in a 7-1 loss at Citi Field.
Even with Wednesday’s matinee on the road, the Orioles were expecting to feel right at home. Baltimore had some extra energy due to the return of “The Dark Knight” Matt Harvey to his former haunt in Gotham, but the O's bats couldn't provide the runs to bail out their starter.
“There was a lot of excitement, a lot of memories,” said Harvey. "Obviously there's been so many ups and downs here at this ballpark and with this organization that I didn't really know what to expect, and what the fans gave me was pretty incredible. I was holding back tears."
The Orioles picked up their first run of the game in the top of the seventh thanks to an RBI groundout by Chance Sisco to bring in Freddy Galvis and end the Mets' chance at a shutout.
Baltimore has an 11-8 record on the road but has been a lackluster 3-7 in its last 10 games. Recently, the Orioles have been unable to close out games and limit opposing offenses, including in their 3-2 walk-off loss against the Mets on Tuesday.
One of the Orioles’ main issues has been their inability to provide run support, which isn't surprising given their 3.73 runs-per-game average ranks 26th in the Majors.
“Well we’re facing some good pitching. We're just scuffing offensively,” said Orioles manager Brandon Hyde. “We’re having a tough time putting rallies together. I thought we swung the bat well early in the game. But we just couldn't get any rallies going."
Taijuan Walker got the start for New York and was in control from the first inning. Baltimore finished with just five hits in the game, with only one knock through the first five frames.
“Obviously I wish things went differently,” said Harvey. “I wish the score was flip-flopped, but my job is to go out and keep runs off the board and obviously I didn't do that. Regardless of who we were playing, it was a rough one.”
The O’s got a chance when the reliable Cedric Mullins led off the sixth with a single to give them their first baserunner since a pair of second-inning walks. Unfortunately, the Mets were clicking on all cylinders and escaped the inning with an impressive double play, one of several strong defensive plays New York made that limited any chance for a Baltimore rally.
“They beat the shift a couple times on us, stayed on the ball pretty well. We drove a few that they made some great defensive plays that changed the game early,” said Hyde. “I thought [Harvey] was throwing the ball pretty well there early in the game, I just thought he got beat by some good batting by the Mets.”
Harvey started the game with an impressive three-up, three-down first inning. But he allowed four straight hits to start the second, including a two-run Kevin Pillar triple as the Mets put up a three-spot. Harvey couldn’t settle back in from there, allowing another run in the third and three more in the fifth, when his return start ended with one out. He struck out four and allowed seven runs on eight hits and one walk in 4 1/3 innings.
“I think he threw a ton of strikes,” said Hyde. “I thought he got beat there in the second inning. Some soft-contact singles and the one mistake to Pillar. Give them credit for their hitting.”
The Orioles are in fifth in the AL East with a 16-21 record. Baltimore will travel back to Camden Yards in preparation for a three-game series against the Yankees starting on Friday.