A frustrated Matt Manning pounded the baseball into his glove and tossed the rosin bag.
He walked Terrin Vavra, the leadoff man in sixth inning, on seven pitches. Two batters later, Kyle Stowers crushed a two-run home run to center field to put the Baltimore Orioles ahead by five runs, and Manning hung his head as he returned to the mound. He then issued his fifth walk of the night on six pitches, which forced manager A.J. Hinch to the mound.
Manning’s outing ended after 102 pitches, only 58 strikes and 5⅓ innings.
“I wanted Matt to get as many outs as he could,” Hinch told reporters in Baltimore. “We think he’s an effective pitcher. I’m not going to rescue him every five innings, but I wish he would’ve made better pitches. Instead of going up on Stowers, he yanks a ball down and it ended up a homer.”
The 24-year-old right-hander had a few strong moments throughout Wednesday’s series finale but wasn’t sharp at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. The Detroit Tigers lost, 8-1, and failed to sweep the series after winning the first two games.
“They definitely outplayed us in every aspect,” Hinch said. “The final score dictates that.”
The Tigers (57-92), as has been the case so many times this year, failed to produce at the plate. Orioles right-hander Jordan Lyles, who entered with a 4.70 ERA in 29 starts, carved up his opponents in his 30th appearance.
He gave up three hits — without a walk — and recorded six strikeouts across nine innings of one-run ball, lowering his ERA to 4.50. It marked Lyles’ first complete game since Sept. 30, 2012, as a member of the Houston Astros. The 31-year-old accomplished the feat on 94 pitches, of which 72 went for strikes.
“He was obviously very effective,” Hinch said. “He had some efficient innings that allowed him to stay in the game. When they got the lead, we put no pressure on them having to go to their bullpen.”
Kerry Carpenter singled in the first inning and Harold Castro, to snap a 0-for-22 streak, singled in the second inning.
After Castro’s single, Lyles retired the next 14 batters before Carpenter, a left-hander, stepped into the batter’s box with one out in the seventh. He tagged a two-strike fastball that leaked over the middle of the plate for an opposite-field solo home run.
Carpenter put the Tigers on the scoreboard with his sixth homer in 28 games, but they still trailed 5-1. The 2019 19th-round pick tied Spencer Torkelson (99 games) as the Tigers’ leader in home runs by a rookie; Riley Greene (in 81 games) is sitting on five.
“He’s putting up pretty good at-bats, knows the strike zone, isn’t afraid to let the ball travel pretty deep and has a pretty good plan,” Hinch said. “He’s being productive, so he’ll be back in there Friday (after Thursday’s off day).”
Lyles, a 12-year MLB veteran, mixed six pitches in his dominant performance: 27 sliders, 19 four-seam fastballs, 18 sinkers, 12 curveballs, 12 cutters and six changeups. He got 10 swings and misses and 21 called strikes.
He’s not ‘Fieldin’ Harold’
The Orioles started the bottom of the third with a leadoff walk from Ramon Urias and a one-out single from Cedric Mullins, leaving Manning with runners on the corners. The inning got out of hand because of a fielding error by second baseman Harold Castro on a potential inning-ending double play.
Everyone was safe, and the Orioles took a 1-0 lead. Gunnar Henderson (RBI single) and Ryan Mountcastle (sacrifice fly) extended the margin to three runs (two unearned), as Manning needed 26 pitches to complete the frame.
“We made the mistake behind him,” Hinch said. “He would have been out of the inning.”
Manning responded with scoreless fourth and fifth innings but was chased by Stowers’ two-run home run in the sixth. He conceded five runs (three earned runs) on four hits and five walks with four strikeouts over 5⅓ innings.
He threw 57 four-seam fastballs, 27 sliders, 10 changeups, six curveballs and two sinkers, recording 10 swings and misses — four fastballs, three sliders and three changeups — with 18 called strikes.
The Orioles hit him hard, averaging a 97.5 mph exit velocity.
“Everything predicates off the fastball,” Hinch said. “He’s got to get his fastball in the (strike) zone. He did for the most part. It looked like the spin was not necessarily consistent tonight. He had some pretty good changeups.”
No relief from Foley
After the Tigers scored in the seventh inning, the Orioles responded with three runs against right-handed reliever Jason Foley in the eighth. Baltimore picked up three straight singles from Vavra, Austin Hays and Stowers.
Stowers’ single made it 6-1.
A one-out single from Robinson Chirinos and two-out single from Adley Rutschman increased the Orioles’ lead to 8-1.
Foley threw 28 pitches.