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Baltimore Orioles look to end 13-game losing streak vs. Twins

May 30, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Baltimore Orioles starting pitcher Keegan Akin (45) leaves the game against the Chicago White Sox during the fifth inning at Guaranteed Rate Field. Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

The Baltimore Orioles, whose losing streak grew to 13 on Sunday, are hoping that coming home from a winless 10-game road trip could help them.

Then again, the Orioles will be hosting the Minnesota Twins in a Monday matinee, a team that beat them three times in a row last week.

Baltimore closed the road trip with a 3-1 loss to the Chicago White Sox on Sunday, hurt once more by its lack of success with runners in scoring position, and letting the home team complete a four-game sweep.

The Orioles were 0-for-3 with runners in scoring position in Sunday’s loss and went 0-for-24 in the four-game series. Plus, according to MASNsports.com, Baltimore has gone just 4-for-56 with RISP in its past seven games, all losses to Minnesota and Chicago.

What has made things more frustrating for manager Brandon Hyde is that the Orioles have been in many of the games until the final innings. Then, the lack of timely hitting or bullpen problems have done them in.

That’s what happened Sunday. The game was tied 1-1 in the seventh when reliever Dillon Tate quickly gave up two runs.

Overall, the Orioles have not won since May 16 and have dropped 20 of their past 22.

“I think we’ve just got to continue to push,” Hyde said in a media Zoom call. “Like I said, we’re in almost every game. It was a tough road trip. The majority of the games were right there for us in the sixth, seventh and eighth inning. We’re hanging around, we’re not quitting, guys are competing, so I’m happy about that.”

The Orioles received some good news in the series finale when Trey Mancini returned after getting hit on the right elbow Thursday and subsequently missing Saturday’s doubleheader. Mancini played as the DH but was hitless in three at-bats with a walk.

Jorge Lopez (1-6, 5.80) starts for the Orioles on Monday against the Twins. He’s 2-2 with a 5.50 ERA in eight games – five starts — versus Minnesota in his career.

Jose Berrios starts for the Twins. Berrios is 5-2 with a 3.67 ERA this season and 6-0 in his career along with a 3.27 ERA against the Orioles in seven starts, beating Baltimore on May 25.

Minnesota has been bothered by injuries this season, and the Twins took another hit over the weekend when outfielder Max Kepler was placed on the 10-day injured list Sunday due to a hamstring strain. The injury has bothered him recently, but he needed to come out when it flared up Saturday’s win over the Royals.

Rob Refsnyder has helped the Twins out in center field. He drove in two runs in Saturday’s win over the Royals and gives Minnesota help when it really needs some at a key position.

Refsnyder can play in a number of different spots, but never worked in center field before 2021. He’s been helping the Twins so far.

“We’ve certainly needed someone to come in and step in in a time of desperate need to go out there and play every day in center field,” said Twins manager Rocco Baldelli. “I mean, he’s played a good center field, he’s swung the bat great, he’s come up in big spots, driven in runs. He’s really done everything.”

The Twins recalled catcher Ben Rortvedt from Triple-A St. Paul. He started Sunday and hit his first major-league home run, which came during a 6-3 loss to the Royals.

That solo shot came in the bottom of the second and gave the Twins a 2-1 lead, after Trevor Larnach walked with the bases loaded in the first. The only other Twins run came later on a Miguel Sano double-play grounder.

–Field Level Media