The surging Baltimore Orioles topped the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on Tuesday night by a score of 4-2 and in doing so pushed their current win streak to nine straight games.
Their latest victory brought their overall record to 42-42, which is the first time they’ve reached the .500 mark since April 10 of last year. As Sarah Langs notes, the Orioles haven’t been at .500 this late in the season since Sept. 9, 2017.
Baltimore is also now just two games out of wild-card position in the AL. They’ve achieved that standing despite having played one of the toughest schedules in the league – they rank second in all of MLB in terms of opponents’ average winning percentage. Speaking of that tough schedule, every team in the American League East at the moment is .500 or better.
Their current win streak is Baltimore’s longest since 1999. That streak in tandem with the depths they reached last season allowed the Orioles to make history of a kind with Tuesday night’s win. According to STATS, the Orioles are now just the second major-league team ever to lose 110 or more games one season and then have at least a nine-game win streak the following year. The other team was the Louisville Colonels of 1889-90.
In the win over the Cubs, Jordan Lyles worked seven innings and allowed two runs on seven hits. Ramon Urías and Jorge Mateo homered for Baltimore, and All-Star Jorge Lopez worked a perfect ninth for his 17th save of the season.
On Wednesday, the Orioles will be back at Wrigley to attempt to advance their win streak to 10 games. Right-hander Spencer Watkins (4.15 ERA, 26 K in 47 ⅔ innings) will go for Baltimore against the Cubs’ Justin Steele (4.13 ERA, 76 K in 76 ⅓ innings), who’s returning from the paternity list.
Looking further ahead, our own Matt Snyder recently wrote that the Orioles’ improved fortunes should inform the club’s approach to the Aug. 2 trade deadline.