BALTIMORE -- Last year, when everyone talked about the Orioles, invariably, home runs came up. This year, they’re still hitting home runs, but not at quite the pace they did a year ago.
On Aug. 6, they equaled a season-high with five home runs, and hit back-to-back-to-back homers during a 12-3 win against the Detroit Tigers before 30,144 at Oriole Park.
Second baseman Jonathan Schoop, first baseman Chris Davis and designated hitter Trey Mancini hit three homers in a row duringthe first inning against Detroit right-hander Anibal Sanchez, who gave up all five home runs.
“When you go back-to-back-to-back, you score some runs early,” Schoop said. “It’s fun when everybody’s hitting, and especially when we win.”
Right fielder Joey Rickard and third baseman Manny Machado each hit home runs. Machado had five RBIs, and both he and Rickard had four hits.
“I don’t know where we are compared to last year [in home runs], and is it because everybody else is hitting more or less? I don’t even look at it,” manager Buck Showalter said. “It’s about run production. Sanchez made some mistakes and our guys were on them…They made him pay for the mistakes he made. You knew the ball was going to be flying out of here today.”
Tim Beckham’s multi-hit game streak ended at five, but he had an eighth-inning single and played an excellent shortstop with a fine stop on a grounder by Detroit first baseman Victor Martinez to end the game.
“It’s about energy. He goes out there and plays the game hard, runs out balls, and dives for balls,” Machado said about Beckham. “He makes nice plays. That’s a sign he’s been having a good offensive year, and he hasn’t stopped since he’s come over here, so we’re glad to have him on this side, and he’s helping us win some ballgames.”
Ubaldo Jimenez pitched 5.2 innings, allowing a run on nine hits. He was excited about watching the long balls.
“It’s always fun when the guys go out there and score a lot of runs,” Jimenez said. “Our lineup is capable of doing that every single night or every single day. So, it’s not a surprise.”
The Orioles split the four-game series with Detroit and have a 55-56 record. They haven’t been at .500 since June 29.
At the beginning of July, Machado was batting .216, and he’s now hitting .257.
“Hits are falling. Things are going well and we’re playing well. We’re playing as a team,” Machado said. “People are getting on base. There are a lot of things that are clicking. It always helps when everyone’s hitting.”
The Orioles are still on the periphery of the playoff picture, and Machado knows the team must play better, much better.
“We’ve been scuffling. We were scuffling for a while,” Machado said. “Nothing’s been going our way. We weren’t hitting homers. It’s just part of the game. There’s ups and downs to it, there’s a rollercoaster. Each guy tries to get on the wave and see what happens.”
NOTES: The Orioles begin a 10-game West Coast swing with a three-game series at the Los Angeles Angels. Right-handers Dylan Bundy (10-8, 4.24) and J.C. Ramirez (10-9, 4.03) are the scheduled Aug. 7 starters. Game time is 10:07 p.m. ET. … The last time the Orioles had hit three home runs in a row was Aug. 19, 2016 when Machado, Davis and Mark Trumbo homered in the first inning against Houston in a game the Orioles lost 15-8. … Infielder Ryan Flaherty (shoulder) will continue his rehab at Double-A Bowie, but could join the Orioles as early as Aug. 10.