Orioles' Colton Cowser hits first 2 home runs of career in 9-4 win over Red Sox to complete sweep

Matt Weyrich, The Baltimore Sun on

Published in Baseball

BOSTON — After falling behind early in all three games of their midweek series against the Boston Red Sox, the Orioles completed the comeback for the third straight day Thursday to win, 9-4 in 10 innings behind left fielder Colton Cowser’s first two career home runs.

The Orioles trailed 1-0 on Tuesday, 5-0 on Wednesday and 2-0 in their finale and climbed back into the game each time. Right fielder Anthony Santander gave the Orioles a 3-2 lead in the eighth Thursday with a two-run homer, but setup man Danny Coulombe gave up the lead on a solo shot by pinch-hitter Connor Wong in the bottom half of the frame.

Gunnar Henderson, who was 0 for 4 with three strikeouts before the game went to extras, came through with the Orioles’ latest clutch swing, taking Red Sox right-hander Isaiah Campbell deep over the Green Monster in left for his third home run of the season. After an RBI single by Cedric Mullins, Cowser launched a three-run shot to right as Baltimore broke open the game with a six-run frame to pick up a sweep of its American League East division rivals in Boston’s home-opening series.

Cowser finished the series 6 for 13 (.462) with 10 RBIs, starting all three games after spending the Orioles’ first three series as a platoon hitter and defensive replacement. The 2021 fifth overall draft pick made the Orioles’ roster out of camp and has gotten off to a scorching-hot start; he ended the day hitting .458 with a 1.379 OPS in 11 games this season.

Second baseman Jackson Holliday, playing the second game of his career after going 0 for 4 in his MLB debut Wednesday, went 0 for 4 again but reached on an error and scored two runs, including the go-ahead run as the designated runner in the 10th.


The Orioles (8-4) enjoyed a strong start by Grayson Rodriguez, who allowed two runs in 5 2/3 innings on 94 pitches (61 strikes). He wasn’t sharp to open the contest, laboring through a 20-pitch first inning and allowing doubles to center fielder Jarren Duran, first baseman Triston Casas and right fielder Wilyer Abreu. Though Casas’ double was a catchable fly ball Santander couldn’t track down before it bounced out of play, Rodriguez struggled to hit his spots as the Red Sox jumped out to a 2-0 lead.

But he settled in from there, scattering three hits the rest of the way before manager Brandon Hyde pulled him in favor of right-handed reliever Jacob Webb with two outs in the sixth. Rodriguez finished with five strikeouts to push his season total to 21, surpassing Corbin Burnes (20) for the most on the team thus far.

Webb recorded four consecutive outs to send the game to Coulombe, who had yet to allow a run through five appearances this season. He sat down the first two batters he faced before Red Sox manager Alex Cora pinch-hit Wong for Abreu to get the platoon advantage. Coulombe was one strike away from getting through the inning before Wong took him deep over the Green Monster in left.

Yennier Cano and Craig Kimbrel then combined to retire four straight hitters to send the game to extra innings. After the Orioles’ 10th inning barrage, right-hander Mike Baumann allowed one unearned run on a double by Duran before closing the game out.

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