The third inning of Wednesday night’s game against the Athletics was a nightmare for the Orioles. The A’s put 11 consecutive runners on base and hung up a 10-spot in the frame against starter Andrew Cashner and reliever Cody Carroll. Here’s how it went down:
- Nick Martini single
- Jonathan Lucroy single
- Ramon Laureano walk
- Matt Chapman two-run double (2-0)
- Jed Lowrie RBI single (3-0)
- Khris Davis RBI single (4-0)
- Matt Olson three-run home run (7-0)
- Stephen Piscotty single [Andrew Cashner is then replaced by Cody Carroll]
- Marcus Semien walk
- Nick Martini single
- Jonathan Lucroy two-run single (9-0)
- Ramon Laureano pop out
- Matt Chapman RBI single (10-0)
- Jed Lowrie fly out
- Khris Davis strike out
For those counting at home, that inning featured eight singles, two walks, a double, and a homer.
The Orioles were already the laughingstock at the league, entering Wednesday’s action with a 41-103 record. With another loss tonight, they would be on pace to finish the season 46-116. 116 losses would rank as the fourth-most in the modern era (1900 to present). The 1962 Mets went 40-120, the 2003 Tigers went 43-119, and the 1916 Philadelphia Athletics went 36-117. A .284 winning percentage, which is what a 46-116 record comes out to, would rank as the 15th-worst in the modern era.
The O’s also entered Wednesday with a -242 run differential, which is obviously up to -252 after that disastrous third inning. That already ranks as the 11th-worst run differential in the era of the 162-game season. If we say the O’s lose 10-0 tonight [Update: they did], they would be on pace for a -282 run differential, which would be the sixth-worst in the 162-game season era. The record in a 162-game season is -337 by the ’03 Tigers.
Barring physicals and roster reshuffling, the Yankees and Reds are all but ready to finalize a deal involving right-hander Sonny Gray, Fancred’s Jon Heyman reported Saturday. The exact return has not been confirmed, but Heyman hears that the Yankees will receive top infield prospect Shed Long and a draft pick in exchange for Gray, with an as-yet unnamed third player possibly involved as well.
According to several reports earlier in the day, negotiations came down to the wire as the Yankees first had their eye on the Reds’ no. 6 prospect, 22-year-old catcher Tyler Stephenson. The Reds ultimately elected to hang on to Stephenson and send Long to New York, as they currently have a greater need for catching depth and weren’t expected to be able to provide a full-time role for the infielder in 2019. Long, 23, is ranked seventh in the Reds’ system and appears to be nearing his MLB debut after batting .261/.353/.412 with 12 homers and a .765 OPS across 522 PA at Double-A Pensacola last year.
Gray figures to step into a prominent role within the Reds’ rotation, which is likely to be a mix of recently-acquired left-hander Alex Wood and right-handers Tanner Roark, Luis Castillo, Anthony DeSclafani, and Tyler Mahle, among several others. Despite Gray’s struggle to remain productive on the mound — he’s three years removed from his only All-Star campaign and turned in a disappointing 4.90 ERA and 2.16 SO/BB rate in 2018 — he might yet help stabilize a team that trotted out the fifth-worst rotation in the majors last season. If, on the other hand, the veteran righty finds the hitter-friendly confines of Great American Ball Park a little too unforgiving this year, the Reds can take some comfort in the fact that he’s due to enter free agency in 2020.