A promising start for the Orioles ended in frustration following Jeremy Hellickson’s roughest outing since joining Baltimore’s rotation two weeks ago.
Matt Chapman hit a tiebreaking three-run homer off Hellickson in a five-run fourth inning, and the Oakland Athletics overcame an early two-run deficit in a 9-3 victory on Sunday.
“Every game’s big right now, so when you lose, you feel like you had to have that one,” Hellickson said. “Just frustrated right now.”
Hellickson (1-2) gave up six runs — twice as many as he allowed in his previous two starts. He allowed five hits in five-plus innings.
That dropped the Orioles to 3-4 on their 10-game road trip.
“That was a strange . just kind of an Oakland game,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. “They really hit one ball hard, a little changeup he was trying to get underneath the bat and left it there. Probably looking for it and hooked it. I thought he had good enough stuff.”
Manny Machado hit his 22nd homer and scored twice for Baltimore.
“We have a great team, we have a great lineup and pitching staff,” Machado said. “Things haven’t turned out how we’d like them to be but we’re going to keep fighting until the end. We’re not going to stop.”
Matt Joyce and Matt Olson also homered as the A’s gained a four-game split.
“We did a great job of not trying to do too much,” Joyce said. “Obviously, Chapman came up with a huge hit . and gave us a big boost that we needed. After that it’s just about grinding out the at-bats, having a good approach, trying to make the necessary adjustments that you need to get to the starter.”
Kendall Graveman (3-3) had an uneven outing in his first win since returning Aug. 3 from a disabled list stint caused by a strained right shoulder. He matched his career high of eight strikeouts, allowing two runs and eight hits in seven innings.
Run-scoring singles by Jonathan Schoop in the first and Chris Davis in the second built Baltimore’s 2-0 lead.
Ryan Healy hit an RBI double in the fourth, when Khris Davis scored the tying run when he beat Chris Davis’ throw home on Matt Olson’s grounder to first. Chapman, in a 3-for-16 slide, homered off the left-field pole. All eight of his home runs have been since the All-Star break.
Marcus Semien’s sacrifice fly increased the lead to 6-2 in the fifth, Joyce homered against Richard Bleier in the seventh and Olson went deep off Zach Britton in the eighth, Olson’s third in as many games.
Jones moving up list: Adam Jones’ single in the sixth inning was his 1,573rd hit, one shy of Boog Powell for fifth on the Orioles’ career list.
Tillman out of the 'pen: Chris Tillman, who was bumped from Baltimore’s rotation following the trade for Hellickson, made his first career relief appearance in the seventh inning after 194 starts.
Tillman pitched 1 1/3 scoreless innings with two strikeouts. “I thought it was very encouraging, some things that he’d been working on really seemed to fit in,” Showalter said. “As proud a man as he is, it feels good for us to know that he feels like the arrow’s pointed up.”
OTHER MLB RESULTS
Jays go deep three times in win over Pirates: J.A. Happ pitched six innings to win his third straight start, Josh Donaldson hit a two-run home run and the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 7-1 Sunday.
Justin Smoak and Darwin Barney added solo homers for the Blue Jays, who have won nine of 13 at home.
Happ (6-8) allowed one run and four hits, walked three and struck out eight, improving to 3-0 with a 1.45 ERA in August.
Josh Harrison, Andrew McCutchen and David Freese hit consecutive singles off Happ in a shaky first, but the former Pirate allowed just two base runners over the next four innings.
The Blue Jays scored five runs off Pittsburgh right-hander Chad Kuhl (5-8) in a bat-around first inning. Jose Bautista drew a leadoff walk and scored when Donaldson blasted a homer off the facing of the third deck in left. Measured at 452 feet, it was Donaldson’s longest homer of the season.
Phils drop three of four to Mets: Michael Conforto and Curtis Granderson hit two-run homers to lead the New York Mets over the Philadelphia Phillies 6-2 on Sunday.
The Mets continue to roll past their NL East rival, improving to 35-16 since the start of the 2015 season. Conforto and Granderson gave the Mets 96 homers over that span in the series to Philadelphia’s 38.
A baserunning blunder helped make the difference in this one.
Mets starter Chris Flexen (2-1) loaded the bases in the fifth inning with no outs and Nick Williams at the plate. Williams was retired on a shallow fly to center field and Conforto’s throw home scooted away from Travis d’Arnaud. Odubel Herrera put his head down and sprinted for third, unaware Freddy Galvis hadn’t moved off the base. D’Arnaud hustled to third to complete a short toss and an 8-2-5 double play.
Herrera, who has put up some of the top offensive numbers in the major leagues since June, has become one of the more polarizing athletes in recent Philly sports history. His bat-flipping and careless baserunning have earned him fan scorn, benchings and a team fine.
Nats split doubleheader in first games without Harper: Chris Stratton struck out a career-high 10 in 6 2/3 shutout innings, and the San Francisco Giants beat Washington 4-2 Sunday in the opener of a day-night doubleheader, the Nationals’ first game following Bryce Harper’s knee injury.
Harper has a significant bone bruise in his left knee but no ligament damage, general manager Mike Rizzo said. Harper was injured Saturday when he slipped on a wet first base, and Rizzo said the Nationals hope the star outfielder can return this season.
Joe Panik had three hits, including a two-run single in a three-run second that also included Gorkys Hernandez’s RBI single. Pinch-hitter Kelby Tomlinson added a sacrifice fly in the eighth.
Stratton (1-2) allowed five hits and one walk in his fourth major league start, and Sam Dyson got three outs for his ninth save in 14 chances.
In the second game, the two sides played into extra innings before Howie Kendrick ended things in grand fashion.
With the bases loaded and nobody out in the bottom of the 11th, Kendrick hit a walk-off grand slam to lift the Nationals to a 6-2 win over the Giants and salvage a split in the doubleheader.
Max Scherzer struck out 10 Giants in seven innings of work, but was matched by Matt Moore, who fanned nine in seven innings of work. Both pitchers allowed two earned runs.