Orioles grab early lead, power past Angels in 9-3 win

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Asher Wojciechowski was handed an early seven-run lead by his Baltimore teammates. He returned the favor with seven strong innings in a lopsided win.

Wojciechowski was superb and Renato Núñez and Trey Mancini homered for the Orioles in their 9-3 victory over the Los Angeles Angels on Friday night.

The right-hander earned his first win with the Orioles against Boston on Sunday and had another quality start against the Angels, two teams with wild-card hopes.

“I took that start and rolled with it,” Wojciechowski said. “Just kind of building confidence and executing pitches. Just on a good roll right now and in sync with my mechanics and executing pitches. I feel like when I do that, I’ll have success.”

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Núñez hit a three-run homer, his 25th of the season, in a six-run second inning for the Orioles, who had a rare 7-0 lead. Mancini hit a two-run shot, his 24th, in the ninth to pad the final margin.

The 30-year-old Wojciechowski (2-3) allowed three hits and two runs while striking out six. He retired the first 11 batters he faced. Shohei Ohtani got the first hit of the game for Los Angeles with a triple to the right field corner with two outs in the fourth inning.

Wojciechowski was acquired from Cleveland on July 1 but was at Triple-A Columbus all season before the deal.

Anthony Santander had three hits and three RBIs. The Orioles (34-69) earned at least a split of the four-game series by winning the first two.

After a 16-inning game the night before that lasted 6 hours, 19 minutes, both teams had a tired bullpen. The Angels recalled Nick Tropeano from Triple-A Salt Lake to make his first start of the season and third appearance. The right-hander struggled with his command and hit the first batter of the game with a pitch. In the second inning, he allowed six runs on three hits, including the homer by Núñez.

The Orioles got better results from their starter.

“I know I need to go deep and give the bullpen a rest,” Wojciechowski said. “Every single game I’m trying to do that, go as deep as I can. Get quick outs. I wouldn’t say it’s anything extra because you don’t want to put any extra pressure on yourself. You just want to do your job and execute pitches.”

Wojciechowski had left the ballpark and gone to bed before Thursday’s game ended in order to rest well before his start.

“I left in the 12th inning, about 11:45, almost midnight,” he said. “I left, and I was following it until about the 15th and went to bed. I checked it this morning and saw we won. I was excited to see Wilky (center fielder Stevie Wilkerson) get the save. Just wanted to get another win today.”

Tropeano (0-1) settled down after his first two innings, pitching three more, and didn’t allow another run. The Angels had several relief pitchers who had thrown three consecutive days and they used 10 pitchers the night before.

Tropeano gave up seven earned runs and six hits in five innings on 103 pitches. He walked three.

“He got behind some of the hitters early,” Angels manager Brad Ausmus said. “It was really the second inning that hurt him, the six runs. It was getting behind. Right out of the gate, (Jonathan) Villar gets hit by the pitch on the breaking ball. I think the first two runs were breaking ball, walk, stolen base and score. Second inning, you remove it, and we have a ballgame.”

Angels rookie Matt Thaiss hit a two-out, two-run homer in the fifth to get Los Angeles on the board, and Justin Upton hit a solo home run in the ninth.

HOME RUN TROTS

Mancini has hit home runs in three consecutive games for the first time in his career. It’s the second-longest home run streak by an Orioles player this season. Núñez homered in four consecutive games May 22-25.

FALSE ALARM

Players and coaches hoped to sleep in Friday after the marathon game the Orioles won in 16 innings. However, some of the Baltimore players were woken up in the morning by a fire alarm at the team hotel. Manager Brandon Hyde was not among those with an unwanted wakeup call. “I woke up about noon,” he said.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Orioles: All-Star LHP John Means (strained left biceps) was placed on the 10-day IL, retroactive to July 25. Hyde said he expects Means will miss just one start. … RHP Nate Karns (right forearm strain) was reinstated from the 60-day injured list and designated for assignment.

Angels: C Jonathan Lucroy (broken nose, concussion) will start a rehab assignment with the Class A Inland 66ers on Saturday. … Noe Ramirez (illness) was available to pitch but didn’t. He was sick Thursday and wasn’t at Angel Stadium. He believed he had food poisoning.

UP NEXT

Orioles: RHP Aaron Brooks (0-1, 6.00 ERA) has seen the Orioles win two of his three starts since he was claimed off waivers from Oakland. Brooks gave up six earned runs in a loss to Arizona in his last start on Monday.

Angels: TBD.

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