Baltimore Orioles eliminated to ensure end of losing streak

NEW YORK — The Baltimore Orioles knew the end was coming, mathematically beaten when Karl Raleigh’s ninth-inning homer gave Seattle a 2-1 win over Oakland and the American League’s final wild card. Already off the field when knocked out of playoff contention.

Baltimore arrives in New York needing to win the last six games, while Tampa Bay and Seattle lose all of them.

Still, the Orioles’ 2-1 victory over the Yankees ensured that Baltimore would end its five-season losing streak.

“We’re proud to help this young man,” pitcher Jordan Lyles said Friday. “We have a lot of talented young people here who are excited and happy and lucky to be a part of it. But as seniors, we may not be here in the future, but this organization, Baltimore City is absolutely in good hands .”

At 81-76, the Orioles need a win to become the first team since 1900 to set a winning record just one year after losing 110 games.

“With six games left in the season, we’re still in a bind and nobody thought that from November to March,” manager Brandon Hyde said before the game. “We’ve never heard of this team having any chance of making the playoffs. And to be able to play the way we do and put ourselves in a position, I’m really proud of our players and coaches and everyone involved … Baltimore City and a lot of people enjoyed watching our team play this year.”

Baltimore lost 115 games in 2018, 108 the following year, 25-35 in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season and 54-110 last season.

“I do want to surprise some people this year, and I hope we can play a better brand of baseball than we have in the past,” said Hyde, who was hired ahead of the 2019 season. “Seeing all the 0 percent playoff odds and then people talking about the playoffs with our team, I think it’s the most enjoyable thing this year, proving people wrong.”

Baltimore has cut veterans and its $60 million payroll ranks 29th among 30 teams as of Aug. 31, behind Oakland and just above Pittsburgh.

“Every bullpen guy out there is doing the bare minimum,” Hyde said. “We had two rookies in our rotation that didn’t part with us. We had another rotation starter asking for a waiver.”

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