Cedric Mullins recorded his third four-plus-hit game of the season and Maikel Franco delivered a bases-clearing double that keyed a five-run eighth inning as the Baltimore Orioles slugged their way to a 13-3 road victory over the Houston Astros on Tuesday.
The Orioles clinched their first road series victory taking two of three against the Seattle Mariners from May 3-5. Baltimore entered the series having lost 22 of their past 23 road games.
Baltimore pounded the short-handed Astros pitching staff for a second consecutive night. Houston lost starter Jose Urquidy to right shoulder discomfort after just four outs and 27 pitches, setting the table for a revolving door of relievers that concluded with a position player, reserve infielder Robel Garcia, allowing two-run home runs in the ninth inning to Ramon Urias and Austin Wynns.
Franco had three hits and scored three runs, and Austin Hays, Anthony Santander, Urias and Wynns added two hits apiece for Baltimore. Hays knocked in three runs.
Mullins tagged Urquidy with a home run, his 14th, leading off the game and added a run-scoring double with two outs in the seventh that gave the Orioles a 4-3 lead.
Mullins (4-for-5, walk, two RBIs) notched his second extra-base hit of the night off Astros reliever Ryne Stanek, who allowed five runs on four hits while issuing a pair of walks in one laborious inning.
Santander extended the Baltimore lead to 5-3 with his fifth homer with one out in the eighth. Stanek sandwiched a pair of walks around a Domingo Leyba single before Franco roped a double to center that scored Ryan McKenna, Leyba and Urias and upped the lead to 8-3.
Of the six relievers who pitched for the Astros, only Andre Scrubb did not allow a hit. Scrubb did, however, issue three walks over his 2 2/3 innings after Urquidy departed.
On Monday, seven Baltimore pitchers worked around 10 walks en route to a 9-7 win in the series opener. The Orioles issued nine walks on Tuesday, but the Astros again struggled to parlay those free passes into runs. Houston finished 1-for-8 with runners in scoring position and stranded 12 baserunners en route to its third consecutive defeat.
Baltimore reliever Alexander Wells (1-0) earned his first career win despite giving up two runs in 2 2/3 innings. Dillon Tate followed with 2 2/3 innings of scoreless, hitless ball to earn his first career save.
Ralph Garza Jr. (0-2) took the loss after yielding a run on one hit in 1 2/3 innings.
–Field Level Media