WASHINGTON—The Orioles looked like they had easily won their third straight game against the Nationals. Taking a two-run lead to the eighth, the Orioles added five runs, and had a 10-3 advantage heading to the bottom of the ninth.
Daniel Murphy hit a grand slam home run off rookie Parker Bridwell, and suddenly it was 10-3, and Zach Britton was in the game.
Britton gave up an earned run, his first since Apr. 30, a total of 43 games and 44 1/3 innings, then tried to get Anthony Rendon at second on a grounder to the mound by Wilson Ramos.
When that failed, the tying run was on, and Ryan Zimmerman was up.
Britton got a double play, the long game was over, and so was his streak.
The Orioles’ 10-8 win over Washington before a sellout crowd of 39,100 at Nationals Park, was their third straight, and Britton, who didn’t earn a save because he came in with a three-run lead without the tying run on base, at bat or on deck, and didn’t pitch an inning, still has his saves streak intact.
“I was a little bit caught off guard, but I felt pretty good once I got in the game. Just everything that happened—the home run by Murphy, get going. I just really didn’t make good pitches tonight, really, all the way through. I think I threw maybe one good pitch, and that was about it,” Britton said.
“I wasn’t even thinking about it. I was just thinking about needing to make some good pitches. I was getting frustrated, but it happens. A bad outing. I’ve had plenty. You’ve just got to execute pitches there. They’re a good hitting team, and right off the bat, I just didn’t make any good pitches. I just need to keep the ball down, and I wasn’t able to. I got fortunate even on the double play ball, it wasn’t crisp but I got fortunate right there.”
Britton was able to ensure that Wade Miley got his first win with the Orioles in his fifth game.
Miley, was 0-2 with a 9.53 ERA in his first four starts. He allowed two runs on seven hits in five-plus innings.
“Right now this time of the year it may be important for us because we’re some thin ranks right now and we need all our healthy pitchers to do what they’re capable of doing. There’s not much margin for error as we go forward here with 30-some games left,” manager Buck Showalter said.
Miley had help from Manny Machado, who had four hits and four RBIs.
“We know it’s going to be a battle. They’re a great team over there and they’re not just going to give up. We knew that. It’s just a matter of the time. They haven’t been swinging the bat like they have been, and we’ve finally clicked a little bit,” Machado said.
The Orioles (70-56) quickly gave Miley (8-10) a 4-0 lead. Machado hit a two-run home run. Chris Davis doubled, Mark Trumbo walked, and Tanner Roark (13-7) hit Jonathan Schoop and Matt Wieters with pitches to score Davis. Trumbo scored on J.J. Hardy’s fly to center.
It could have been worse, but Trea Turner made a terrific sliding catch on Adam Jones’ liner to start the game.
Washington (73-53) got a run back in the bottom of the first on Anthony Rendon’s RBI double.
Jones began the second with an infield single, and he took second on Murphy’s error. Machado’s single gave the Orioles a 5-1 lead.
Danny Espinosa’s 20th home run of the year in the fifth made it 5-2.
Mychal Givens, who came on with runners on second and third in the sixth, got the next three outs, and struck out Espinosa in the seventh. Pinch hitter Ben Revere doubled, and Turner tied a franchise record with his eighth straight hit, a single.
Werth fouled to Davis, and tossed his bat away, as Donnie Hart came into face Murphy, who singled to score Revere, but struck out Bryce Harper.
“It was good. As a competitor, this is a situation that you wanted to be in, I was kind of hoping and wishing that the phone rings and he calls my name,” Hart said.
Machado’s fourth RBI, a single to right, scored Kim, and the Orioles moved ahead 6-3 in the eighth.
In eight games at Nationals Park, Machado is batting .472 (17-for-36) with three homers and nine RBIs.
Schoop added an RBI single, and Wieters hit his 11th home run, a three-run shot, to center field for a five-run inning off Blake Treinen and a 10-3 lead.
“Ultimately we would have loved to keep Zach out of the game, so every run’s important, but getting a win is the most important thing,” Wieters said.