Rangers poised for sweep of Orioles
But DeShields’ absence did little to slow down the Rangers, who used solid pitching from Mike Minor and home runs from Joey Gallo and Rougned Odor to beat the Baltimore Orioles 3-1 on Saturday at Globe Life Park in Arlington, Texas. Texas has won the firsrt three games in the four-game series.
The Orioles will send right-hander Yefry Ramirez (1-4, 4.59 ERA) to the mound on Sunday afternoon in the series finale to counter Texas right-hander Drew Hutchison, who was added to the Rangers’ roster Saturday.
DeShields was scratched from Friday’s lineup because of a headache and landed on the DL. He suffered the concussion while trying to make a diving catch in the sixth inning of an July 11 game against the Red Sox. DeShields had to leave that game and immediately went into Major League Baseball’s concussion protocol. He was cleared two days later.
“(Friday) was the first day DeShields had any complaints that he talked about,” Texas manager Jeff Banister told MLB.com prior to Saturday’s game. “When a guy comes in talking about headaches and he has been in concussion protocol, that raises a number of red flags immediately.”
DeShields can return to the team Friday but will first have to clear all the mandatory concussion tests again.
The Orioles, who had won four of five games before traveling to Arlington, lost for the third straight night but were at least competitive in Saturday’s game after losing by a combined 28-11 on Thursday and Friday.
“There’s something to play for,” Baltimore catcher Caleb Joseph said. “There’s a lot of younger players that are auditioning for next year, and even some of us older players, we’re auditioning for next year. Each game truly matters.
“Opportunities are really thin in the big leagues, and it’s really important for each and every guy to come out there and do their best. If I’m a pitcher, I’m scratching and clawing to get out there and try to throw up zeros. There are openings all over the place on this staff, and you’ve got to seize the moment and take advantage of the opportunities at hand.”
Ramirez is coming off a rough outing against the Yankees on Tuesday, when he allowed a season-high six runs on six hits over five innings in a loss. Ramirez was 1-3 with a 5.25 ERA in five July starts. He made his major league debut June 13 and has pitched against the Rangers once, throwing five scoreless innings in Baltimore on July 14 in a no-decision.
The Rangers picked up Hutchison after he opted out of a minor-league deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers on Tuesday.
“All the reports have been really good,” Banister told the Dallas Morning News. “He’s been throwing the ball well at Triple-A. ”
Hutchison, 27, was 4-1 with a 2.14 ERA in at Triple-A Oklahoma City, and has been impressive lately. He finished his time in the Pacific Coast League with 23 consecutive scoreless innings.
Hutchison started the season with the Phillies, and was 1-1 with 4.64 ERA in 11 appearances, all in relief. Hutchison was outrighted to Triple-A Lehigh Valley, but he rejected the assignment in early June and became a free agent. He then signed a minor-league deal with the Dodgers.
His best major-league season was 2015, when he went 13-5 for the Toronto Blue Jays.
Hutchison is 5-3 with a 4.02 ERA in 12 career starts against the Orioles.
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