MINNEAPOLIS - The Baltimore Orioles thought they were going to have a perfect Sunday. They had a big early lead over the Minnesota Twins, and Wei-Yin Chen was shutting out the Minnesota Twins in the fifth inning.
On his final pitch to Minnesota's Eduardo Escobar in the fifth, Chen screamed and walked off the mound. He didn't return for the sixth and his injury was called a strained right oblique muscle.
The injury took some of the fun away from a rare Orioles' laugher, a 6-0 win over the Twins before 34,320 at Target Field.
Chen (3-3) got the win, allowing five hits without walking a batter. He struck out three and put a brave front on after the game, saying he thought his injury was a cramp though the Minnesota dugout heard his scream.
"I have no idea but I can tell in the fifth inning, the last batter, Escobar, after two strikes I was just have a weird feeling and I just tried to be strong and finish out that inning," Chen said through his interpreter. "And the last pitch, I finished the delivery and started feeling 'maybe that's a cramp on me.'"
Manager Buck Showalter tried to downplay the severity of it and said he would try and think positive thoughts.
"We'll take a look at it tomorrow and see where we are, get an evaluation. I'm only thinking good things," Showalter said.
Baltimore already has one pitcher, Miguel Gonzalez, on the disabled list with a blister on his right thumb and now another could be headed there. Even though the Orioles have two off days this week, they could need two replacement starters.
Before Sunday one may have been Jake Arrieta, but he was scratched from his Norfolk start with a strained right shoulder.
"It's something they have some concern with, but it's nothing right now that they're overly concerned with at this point, but it's not normal," Showalter said.
The Orioles could call up Zach Britton, Steve Johnson or Jair Jurrjens from Norfolk. Kevin Gausman, last year's No. 1 draft choice is at Bowie.
But, Chen is insisting he's not going on the disabled list.
"I don't think that happens, it's not that serious to me," Chen said.
Baltimore's six-run margin was its second largest of the season. They've thrown two shutouts, both started by Chen.
Manny Machado had three hits in each of the series' three games, and Chris Davis had a long two-run home run and three RBIs. All six runs were scored off Scott Diamond (3-3).
Machado is batting .406 in his last 19 games. If he has three hits in Tuesday's game against San Diego, he'll become the fourth Orioles player to have four straight three-hit games. Cal Ripken, Eddie Murray and Don Buford are the others.
"I'm not even paying much attention to it. I don't look up there and see what I'm hitting. I'm just going up there and trying to help this team win whatever way. Just trying to hit the ball and catch the outs," Machado said.
Davis' home run was his 11th and he has 37 RBIs. The Orioles (23-15) took two of three games from the Twins (17-17).
"It was a very clean game. We have been swinging the bats well the last few days. Feels good to win the game by a pretty big margin," Davis said.
Baltimore has played 25 of its first 38 games on the road, and they're an impressive 14-9. Though they've yet to sweep a series or be swept, they've won nine of 12 series. Now, they head home for an eight-game homestand.
"It's huge,especially due to the fact that we've been on the road so much. It's tough when the season starts where the weather is usually colder, everybody is trying to find that groove. But to win that many series and be on the road, it's definitely huge for us," Davis said.
Tommy Hunter, Darren O'Day, Brian Matusz and Pedro Strop closed the game for the Orioles.