After winning nine of 12 games since the All-Star Break and riding a streak of four consecutive wins, the Los Angeles Angels entered tonight’s game against the Orioles looking to push deeper into an intriguing American League wildcard race.The Orioles, meanwhile, remained stuck to the bottom of the American League East Division standings with a 32-69 record, as the ballclub continues its top to bottom organizational rebuild.
Despite the two teams’ differing circumstances, it took a staggering six hours and 19 minutes to split them apart, as the Orioles ultimately prevailed in a 16-inning marathon.
In a pitching duel which saw just three runs scored through 6 1/2 innings, both teams squandered late leads as the bats got on top of the respective bullpens. A misplayed flyball from Orioles center fielder Stevie Wilkerson gifted Kole Calhoun a three-run double in the bottom of the 7th which put the Angels up 4-2, however an immediate response from the Orioles in the 8th tied things up, with Wilkerson making amends with a clutch RBI double with two out. Trey Mancini launched his 23rd home run of the season in the 9th, before Brian Goodwin responded in the home half of the inning to send the game to extras.
From there, the bullpens took absolute control, with neither team capitalizing on scoring opportunities until Jace Peterson justified his recent call up with a two-run single in the 15th that put the Orioles ahead. Hanser Alberto’s RBI single added some further insurance, before Tanner Scott was called in from the bullpen to close things out…
… but he couldn’t. Instead, he duly loaded the bases, walked David Fletcher (8-6), and left himself the task of facing the best player in the world, Mike Trout. Expectedly, Trout smoked a double to left which scored two (8-8) and saw Fletcher called out in a bang-bang play at home plate. After a long video review, the call on the field stood. A stunning catch from Dwight Smith Jr., where he ended up in the left field stands sent the game to the 16th where the Orioles went back ahead thanks to a two-run bomb from Jonathan Villar. Stevie Wilkerson’s eventful night then reached unprecedented and historic levels, called on to record three outs for the save – which he did using mid-50s curveballs. By that stage, Orioles fans on the east coast were soon considering breakfast, at an ungodly 4:27 AM.
— DC ✍🏼🎙 (@DanClarkSports) July 26, 2019
The epic encounter surpassed another notable west coast marathon in recent memory, when the Orioles outduelled the Mariners 4-2 on September 18, 2012, in a game that finished at 3:44AM on the east coast.
Stats that mattered…
- It was the first time in Angels history 10 pitchers were used (the Orioles also used 10).
- It was the first time in Angels history that 11 walks were drawn in a lost game.
- It was the first time in MLB history a position player, Stevie Wilkerson, earned a save.