OAKLAND (AP) — A promising start for the Orioles ended in frustration following Jeremy Hellickson’s roughest outing since joining Baltimore’s rotation two weeks ago.
Matt Chapman hit a tiebreaking three-run homer off Hellickson in a five-run fourth inning, and the Oakland Athletics overcame an early two-run deficit in a 9-3 victory on Sunday.
“Every game’s big right now, so when you lose, you feel like you had to have that one,” Hellickson said. “Just frustrated right now.”
Hellickson (1-2) gave up six runs — twice as many as he allowed in his previous two starts. He allowed five hits in five-plus innings.
That dropped the Orioles to 3-4 on their 10-game road trip.
“That was a strange . just kind of an Oakland game,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. “They really hit one ball hard, a little changeup he was trying to get underneath the bat and left it there. Probably looking for it and hooked it. I thought he had good enough stuff.”
Manny Machado hit his 22nd homer and scored twice for Baltimore.
“We have a great team, we have a great lineup and pitching staff,” Machado said. “Things haven’t turned out how we’d like them to be but we’re going to keep fighting until the end. We’re not going to stop.”
Matt Joyce and Matt Olson also homered as the A’s gained a four-game split.
“We did a great job of not trying to do too much,” Joyce said. “Obviously, Chapman came up with a huge hit . and gave us a big boost that we needed. After that it’s just about grinding out the at-bats, having a good approach, trying to make the necessary adjustments that you need to get to the starter.”
Kendall Graveman (3-3) had an uneven outing in his first win since returning Aug. 3 from a disabled list stint caused by a strained right shoulder. He matched his career high of eight strikeouts, allowing two runs and eight hits in seven innings.
Run-scoring singles by Jonathan Schoop in the first and Chris Davis in the second built Baltimore’s 2-0 lead.
Ryan Healy hit an RBI double in the fourth, when Khris Davis scored the tying run when he beat Chris Davis’ throw home on Matt Olson’s grounder to first. Chapman, in a 3-for-16 slide, homered off the left-field pole. All eight of his home runs have been since the All-Star break.
Marcus Semien’s sacrifice fly increased the lead to 6-1 in the fifth, Joyce homered against Richard Bleier in the seventh and Olson went deep off Zach Britton in the eighth, Olson’s third in as many games.
JONES MOVING UP
Adam Jones’ single in the sixth inning was his 1,573rd hit, one shy of Boog Powell for fifth on the Orioles’ career list.
TILLMAN’S BULLPEN DEBUT
Chris Tillman, who was bumped from Baltimore’s rotation following the trade for Hellickson, made his first career relief appearance in the seventh inning after 194 starts. Tillman pitched 1 1/3 scoreless innings with two strikeouts. “I thought it was very encouraging, some things that he’d been working on really seemed to fit in,” Showalter said.
“As proud a man as he is, it feels good for us to know that he feels like the arrow’s pointed up.”
Orioles: OF Anthony Santander, out since spring training with a right forearm strain, is expected to be activated off the DL before a three-game series against the Los Angeles Angels starts Aug. 18.
Athletics: Backup C Josh Phegley (strained left oblique) could begin a rehab assignment early next week.
Orioles: RHP Kevin Gausman (8-8,) starts at Seattle on Monday night. He needs one win to match his career high.
Athletics: RHP Jharel Cotton (5-9) pitches the opener of a three-game series against visiting Kansas City on Monday. Cotton has allowed five home runs in his last 14 2/3 innings.
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