Rays push winning streak to 7, beat O’s 10-1 for sweep

Sports

BALTIMORE (AP)Joey Wendle homered twice, Rich Hill combined with his bullpen on a two-hitter and the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Baltimore Orioles 10-1 Thursday to extend their winning streak to seven games.

Tampa Bay outscored the Orioles 32-14 and out-hit them 43-22 during its first three-game sweep at Camden Yards since May 17-19, 2013. The Rays at 26-19 are seven games over .500 for the first time this year. They have hit 17 homers during the streak, their longest since winning eight in a row from Aug. 19-26, 2018, and have averaged nine runs per game during the spurt.

”Things are going our way,” Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash said. ”We’re making things happen, we’re getting really well-pitched ballgames. The offense has really, really come to life. We’ve got a lot to feel encouraged about.”

Baltimore has lost 10 of 12 and at 17-26 is a season-high nine games under .500. The Orioles fell to a majors-worst 6-18 at home.

”We have not played well the past couple weeks,” Orioles manager Brandon Hyde said. ”Our pitching is really beat up right now. We have to have starters go longer.”

Hill (3-1) extended his scoreless streak to 20 2/3 innings before major leagues RBIs leader Trey Mancini homered leading off the fourth. Hill allowed one run and two hits in six innings with four strikeouts, earning victories in consecutive starts for the first time since winning three in a row in June 2019. He has lowered his ERA from 8.82 to 3.89 over his last five starts.

Trevor Richards struck out two in a perfect seventh, and Louis Head pitched two hitless innings around a pair of leadoff walks and a hit batter.

Baltimore starter Dean Kremer (0-4) gave up four runs, five hits and four walks in three innings.

”They’re a pretty hot team, as you can see,” Kremer said. ”They’re swinging the bats pretty well. When you leave too many balls center cut, you pay for it.”

Wendle homered to right-center leading off the second, and Randy Arozarena hit a three-run homer for a 4-0 lead.

Arozarena, who homered twice in Wednesday’s victory, added a run-scoring single as part of his first big league four-hit game. He hit .500 (8 for 16) in the series and had consecutive four-RBI games.

Wendle also homered in the ninth against Baltimore infielder Stevie Wilkerson. A pitch after being jeered for missing a 45 mph changeup, Wendle went deep to right-center for his first career multi-homer game.

”I’m sure between the home run and the swing and miss, I’ll probably hear more about the swing and miss,” Wendle said. ”It’s almost a mental battle hitting against a position player. A lot of guys don’t like it. It was just 50 miles an hour right down the middle, so I was able to do something with it and make a little adjustment after that first swing and miss there.”

O’S OPEN UP

The Orioles will eliminate capacity restrictions starting June 1. ”That’s great news for everybody,” Hyde said. ”It means we’re slowly but surely getting back to normal, which is a great feeling.” Social distancing between groups of fans will no longer be enforced, but fans will be required to wear masks as part of Baltimore City’s continuing health mandates.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Rays: Cash said RHP Michael Wacha (right hamstring tightness) threw well in a session Wednesday and could be activated this weekend. ”It’s probably fair to assume we’d like to have him back in some scenario over this upcoming Toronto series,” Cash said.

Orioles: Hyde said OF Anthony Santander (left ankle sprain) is expected to be activated Friday. . RHP Dillon Tate (left hamstring strain) will begin throwing off a mound in the next few days and is about two weeks from returning. . RHP Mac Sceroler (shoulder tendinitis) is throwing multiple innings to hitters at extended spring training. … Baltimore optioned OF Ryan McKenna to Triple-A Norfolk after the game. The rookie is hitting .214 with no homers and one RBI in 28 at-bats.

UP NEXT

Rays: Tampa Bay begins a four-game series with Toronto in Dunedin, Florida., on Friday. RHP Tyler Glasnow (4-2, 2.35 ERA) is 0-3 with a 6.44 ERA in seven starts against the Blue Jays.

Orioles: RHP Jorge Lopez (1-4, 6.35) starts Friday at Washington as Baltimore begins a three-city, 10-game trip.

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