The Baltimore Orioles finally showed signs of cranking up the offense.
They might need quite a bit more of the big production when they face the visiting Minnesota Twins on Monday night.
Baltimore is coming off a 9-5 home victory against the Boston Red Sox on Sunday, its highest run total of the season. The Orioles will seek their first three-game winning streak of the year in the opener of a four-game series.
The Twins won the last two games of a three-game series at Tampa Bay, giving them wins in nine of their past 10 games. Minnesota routed the Rays 9-3 on Sunday.
“A lot of good at-bats, a lot of good swings, a lot of using the whole field,” Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said.
Minnesota has scored nine runs in back-to-back games. The Twins have six games of eight or more runs less than a month into the season.
Baltimore will go with Tyler Wells (0-2, 5.54 ERA) to start the series opener. The Orioles have lost each of Wells’ four starts so far this season.
Twins starter Chris Paddock (0-2, 3.68 ERA) should be well rested on Monday, as he will pitch for the first time since working 5 2/3 innings in a no-decision against the Detroit Tigers on Tuesday. He has recorded 13 strikeouts and one walk over 14 2/3 innings in his first three starts.
Orioles manager Brandon Hyde finally saw his team turn up the offense. Most of it came in a six-run sixth inning during the series finale against Boston.
“Got some big hits and played solid defensively,” Hyde said. “Hopefully that (big) inning can kind of get us going offensively a little bit.”
Baltimore first baseman Tyler Nevin said he has felt good at the plate and he hopes that starts to translate into more hits. He was in his third game in the big leagues this year after being called up from the minors, and his two-run single in the fifth inning put the Orioles ahead for good.
Nevin had been 0-for-7 for Baltimore in 2022 before the hit.
“It’s good to get that monkey off the back,” Nevin said.
Four Baltimore players had multiple hits Sunday, helping the Orioles improve to 5-4 in home games.
The Orioles clearly need more on the offensive side, particularly with a rotation that has taken its licks.
Minnesota and Baltimore have both played 22 games, with the Twins scoring a total of 94 runs and the Orioles with 71. The Orioles have hit 11 home runs, the second-lowest total in the majors. Minnesota is tied for seventh with 24 long balls.
The Twins will arrive in Baltimore a bit wounded, most notably first baseman Miguel Sano. He exited the Saturday game with a left knee ailment, and the team plans to place him on the injured list, Baldelli said.
With teams having to reduce their rosters from 28 players to 26 on Monday, the Twins also optioned catcher Jose Godoy to Triple-A Saint Paul.
Baltimore designated hitter Trey Mancini was held out of the Sunday contest because of sore ribs.
The Orioles optioned outfielder Ryan McKenna to Triple-A Norfolk on Sunday night as part of the roster cutdown. One more player must be removed from the roster on Monday.
–Field Level Media