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O’s defeat A’s in 13-run hit-fest

Oakland had 12 hits but were no match for the Baltimore’s 15.

Baltimore Orioles v Oakland Athletics Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

It was a prime day for offense as both the Oakland Athletics and Baltimore Orioles secured over 10 hits a piece in Friday’s series opener. It was the orange birds from the visiting clubhouse, however, that better capitalized on that bounty of baserunners to win the game.

Opening for the A’s was southpaw Francisco Perez who gave up three consecutive singles in the top of the 1st inning, unhelped by a Jordan Diaz errant throw, that led to the Orioles to draw blood early and score their first run of the game. A follow-up Cedric Mullens double score the rest of those runners, granting Baltimore a quick 3-0 lead. The A’s struck back quickly with a Seth Brown double off Kyle Gibson in the bottom half of the inning, scoring Brent Rooker from first without a throw.

The A’s got another and doubled their tally with a leadoff single from Tyler Soderstrom and a RBI double to left-center field.

Luis Medina took the ball from Perez in the 2nd, hoping to keep the game close for his teammates. But it was much of the same as the Orioles kept tacking on hit after hit, including a two-run blast from rookie phenom Gunnar Henderson. Unlike many of Medina’s other meltdown outings, this one had nothing to do with walks as he didn’t allow a single free pass. He just wasn’t able to get the O’s off-balance as 14 of the 15 batters he faced made contact. He ended up allowing a trio of runs in as many innings, excluding one that was unearned, putting the A’s in a 7-2 hole. They would extend that by a couple runs in the next inning, getting four hits off Kyle Muller in his first outing back in the majors.

Once again, Oakland tried to gain some ground back in the bottom of the 5th. Rooker and Brown were once again in the middle of the action as they each knocked in a run to make it a 9-4 game. The A’s loaded the bases the following inning with a pair of singles from Tony Kemp and Nick Allen, followed by a 4-pitch walk to Zack Gelof. Rooker, who was 3-for-3 at the time, couldn’t eke out a fourth hit, ending the inning with a popup to the catcher.

Muller and Tayler Scott were able to keep the hot-hitting O’s off the board for the rest of the game but the A’s were only able to muster up one more baserunner over the last three innings of the game.

Though the Orioles took this game, they offered a glimpse to the A’s of what they’re future could look like if they continue making progress with their young core. It was only two years ago, after all, that Baltimore had the worst record in the AL and now they’re leading it.

Tomorrow, Oakland will host game two of the series with a friendly southpaw duel: Cole Irvin will make his Coliseum return and face off against his former rotation-mate-for-a-month Ken Waldichuk.