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Chance Sisco's home run helps Orioles to 7-2 win over Twins in Grapefruit League opener

All winter long, Chance Sisco and the Orioles at large anticipated a day like Saturday, when they could strap up and begin the process of leaving 2018 behind. Sisco got on with the getting-on quickly.

Sisco, the one-time top prospect who had a disappointing 2018 not unlike the team as a whole, homered on his first swing of the Grapefruit League campaign to stake the Orioles to the early lead they rode to a 7-2 win over the Minnesota Twins at Ed Smith Stadium on Saturday.

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It might be early in the catcher competition for the swing to mean much, but Sisco said everything about the day felt good.

"I don't really know how important it is," Sisco said. "I think it's just good to be able to get into the box, see some pitches, try to put the barrel on the ball is really all I was trying to do right there. The result was pretty cool, but at the same time, we're not out there trying to hit home runs. I don't think it's really a home-run-hitting contest right now."

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His was the biggest blow struck in a game that looked like each team's first, with the Orioles' offense helped along by a two-run home run by current top prospect Yusniel Diaz in the third inning. Sacrifice flies by infielders Renato Núñez and Rio Ruiz rounded out the scoring for the Orioles.

Reliever Mike Wright Jr. ended up pitching the only clean inning of the seven pitchers used, a 1-2-3 fourth that came after he allowed three hits but no runs in the third. He pitched after Yefry Ramirez, who labored through two innings and allowed a run on two hits with a pair of walks.

“I thought it was a pretty good first game,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “I thought we were aggressive on the bases, and that’s what I’m looking for, guys that kind of set the tone. Cedric [Mullins] did that right away in the first inning. We went first to third twice. I thought we did a lot of good things, especially for the first game.”

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