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Orioles undone by Davis' two-run error, quiet offense in 4-1 loss to Phillies

Strip them of their star-spangled bat tape and flag-striped socks, their commemorative Fourth of July caps and jerseys, and Wednesday’s Orioles weren’t very special at all.

Holiday or not, this is their ordinary, this 4-1 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies before an announced crowd of 30,943 at Citizens Bank Park.

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One crushing defensive flub when it counts, in the form of an error on a soft, topspin ground ball to Chris Davis that erased their early deficit.

One hit when it counted, but none in eight chances with runners on second or third. One young pitcher — 24-year-old Yefry Ramírez — whose best effort was wasted because of it all.

“That’s a play that Chris normally makes, but you could see how it would happen,” Showalter said. “What cost us was just not scoring any runs.”

Losers of nine of 10, the Orioles (24-61) remain just off the pace of the worst teams in the last half-century, with no signs that their fortunes will soon change.

Not when they play like this.

The Orioles had at least one man reach base in each of the first seven innings against presumptive All-Star pitcher Aaron Nola, but only scored once, when Tim Beckham earned a one-out walk in the third inning and scored easily on a double to left-center by Adam Jones.

Ramírez, starting for the second time this season after impressing with five scoreless relief innings Thursday, made it look for a while as if that would hold up. He’d faced the minimum through four before surrendering a one-out walk in the fifth inning to Nick Williams, who advanced to third when Scott Kingery yanked a double to left for the Phillies’ first hit of the game.

Three pitches later, catcher Jorge Alfaro topped a ball down the first-base line to Davis’ left. He looked at Williams between third base and home before trying to field the ball and it went under his glove, allowing both runs to score.

Ramírez got out of the inning, but that was it — a loss despite five innings allowing two runs (one earned) on one hit and a pair of walks with five strikeouts.

“He did what he had to do — pitched five shutout innings, really,” Showalter said.

“Errors are definitely costly,” Ramírez said through interpreter Ramón Alarcón. “Unfortunately, we were not able to come up and get the advantage on our end. We just have to keep going and keep trying to win.”

David Hess, whose rotation spot Ramírez took to start Wednesday, pitched a scoreless sixth before serving up a two-run home run to Williams in the seventh and giving way to Zach Britton, who pitched for the first time since Saturday. But even the one-run hole Davis dug them into was too much for the Orioles to climb from.

“We could have pitched anybody” Showalter said. “If we don’t score but one run, it doesn’t really matter.”

They left two runners on base in the fifth, then two in the seventh, when Nola talked his way into staying in to face Manny Machado with runners on first and third and two outs.

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After showing signs of their bats waking up on a swing through Washington and Atlanta last month, the Orioles have scored 31 times in 10 games since. They spent barely two days in Philadelphia and were swept despite out-hitting the Phillies 14-8 in the series, all while dealing with Colby Rasmus leaving the club and another round of trade speculation hanging over the team.

“Right now, you can’t write a better script,” Jones said. “This might be a movie one day. This season might be a movie one day — starring me. I’m going to star as myself.

“But it’s a lot of emotions, you know? It’s been an up-and-down year. More down, obviously, in the win-loss column. Up, because I come to work every day with great guys. Obviously, the results not there, but I come to work with great guys every day. It’s just part of it. There’s some things that I’m seeing for the first time. There’s some things that I’m seeing repeated. The old saying is you stay in this game long enough, you’ll see a lot of different things.”

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