Baltimore Orioles

Cedric Mullins, Orioles triple their way past Athletics in 12-4 victory, ending four-game slide

Cedric Mullins and Richie Martin led the Orioles to victory by achieving a feat the team had not accomplished since the year before they were born.

From the bottom two spots of Baltimore’s lineup, Mullins tripled twice and Martin added another in a 12-4 victory over the Oakland Athletics on Monday night at Camden Yards in the opener of the teams’ four-game series. It marked the first time the Orioles produced three triples in a game since April 23, 1993, when Cal Ripken Jr., Mike Devereaux and Harold Reynolds had one each.


Trey Mancini hit his fifth home run in 10 games to put the Orioles (5-5) ahead in the first inning of the lowest-attended open-admission game in Orioles Park history with an announced crowd of 6,585. In the second, after the first of Chris Davis’ five hitless at-bats to give him a record 49 straight without a hit, Jesús Sucre and Martin singled in front of Mullins, who sharply grounded a Marco Estrada pitch down the right-field line. He scored both runners with the triple and came home himself on the play on Oakland (6-8) second baseman Jurickson Profar’s errant throw to third, supplying right-hander Andrew Cashner a 4-0 lead.

“ ‘Do I have enough to get home?’ ” Mullins said of his thoughts leaving third base. “My legs felt like they were about to give out. That was a long trip for me.”


Josh Phegley quickly cut the lead in half, homering off Cashner in the top of the third. It was one of two home runs Cashner allowed in his 5 1/3 innings. Of the first 32 runs the Orioles allowed this homestand, home runs provided all but three.

Mullins tripled again the fourth, smacking a ball into right-center that kept going. He became the first Oriole to record the first two triples of his career in the same game. A Baltimore batter had not hit two triples in any game since Alejandro De Aza in 2014.

Mullins had to wait longer to go home after his second triple, but not much. Switch-hitter Jonathan Villar began the game hitting right-handed against the right-handed Estrada, who has historically fared better against left-handed bats, but Villar moved to that side of the plate in the fourth inning and homered to center to push the Orioles ahead 6-2.

Martin, facing the organization that left him unprotected and thus available for the Orioles to take in the Rule 5 draft, added his first career triple in the sixth. It marked the rookie shortstop’s first multihit game, coming against an Oakland team that took him in the first round of the 2015 draft. Martin said he drew no motivation from the opponent.

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“Nah, not at all,” he said. “Every day, you’re playing big league baseball, so you’re facing good teams and good arms.

“Baseball, it’s weird. I try to stay even-keeled with each game that goes on. I’m not gonna let this go to my head.”

Mullins was unable to triple a third time, which would have put him in the company of Al Bumbry (1973) as the only Orioles to do so, but he settled for a sacrifice fly to right that scored Martin and provided his career-high third RBI.

Martin and Mullins entered the game a combined 4-for-45 on the season, but they finished Monday 5-for-6 after Martin singled in the eighth and Mullins advanced he and Sucre with a bunt.


“They sparked us all night,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “Both those guys have not had the start they wanted and the way they swung the bats tonight was outstanding. I’m just really happy for both of them. I know tonight made them feel good. I know they were pressing a little bit and to get some big hits. That was huge.”

Villar followed with a two-run single, and Mancini reached for the fourth time with an RBI grounder through the right side. Hanser Alberto’s two-out, two-run single gave the Orioles 12 runs, two more than they scored in being swept by the New York Yankees over the weekend amid four straight defeats.

The insurance was much needed after an Oakland threat in the top of the eighth. The A’s loaded the bases against Jimmy Yacabonis, but Mychal Givens struck out Mark Canha, who homered off Cashner in the fifth, and got Chad Pinder to ground out to escape the inning unscathed. The extra runs enabled Hyde to let Givens rest for the ninth, potentially saving him for Tuesday’s game in which left-hander John Means will make his first major league start.