By Oh Sang-jin Reporter= Baltimore Orioles Japanese pitcher Shintaro Fujinami (29) failed to continue his recent upswing and pitched poorly.
Fujinami pitched ⅓ of an inning and gave up three runs on three hits in Baltimore’s second game against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas, on Sept. 19 (KST). Fujinami, who was coming off a seven-game scoreless streak in September, gave up his first earned run in eight games, pushing his ERA back into the high sixes (6.90).
The previous day (Aug. 18), Fujinami threw ⅔ of an inning of one-hit ball, striking out one and walking one, with his fastball reaching 101.5 miles per hour (163.3 kilometers per hour), in the Orioles’ come-from-behind win over the Tampa Bay Rays. With Baltimore clinching a postseason berth, Fujinami will get to experience fall baseball in his first year in the majors. Fujinami, who came to Baltimore via trade in July from the Oakland Athletics, the league’s lowest-ranked team, will get to experience the postseason first, something his high school “rival” Ohtani never did in his six seasons in the majors.
But the joy of the previous day was short-lived. Fujinami took the mound in the sixth inning of Baltimore’s 3-1 win over Houston on April 19, replacing starter John Minnes. Fujinami got off to a good start by getting leadoff hitter Jose Abreu to fly out to left field on three pitches, but he was in trouble against the next batter, Kyle Tucker, when he was hit by a fastball on a five-pitch count with a 1-2 advantage.토토사이트
With one out and two on, Fujinami put together two straight strikes against Chas McCormick to work a 0-2 favorable pitch count. After fouling off pitches three and four, Fujinami threw his fifth pitch, a 100.3 mph (161.4 km/h) fastball, right down the middle, and McCormick’s hard-hit ball sailed over the second baseman for a single.
Fujinami, who gave up his first run in September, was shakier after that. After allowing a stolen base to McCormick to put runners on first and second, Fujinami fired a six-pitch, 96.7-mile-per-hour fastball over the head of Jeremy Peña on a 2-2 pitch count. Peña’s RBI single on the resulting wild pitch tied the game at 3-3, and Fujinami turned the mound over to Jacob Webb. Webb then walked two runners, including the winning run, to extend the lead to 5-3 and increase Fujinami’s deficit to three runs.
If the game had ended in a Houston victory, Fujinami would have taken the loss. However, the Baltimore offense rallied in the top of the seventh inning to tie the game at 5-5 on RBI singles by Adley Rutchman and Cedric Mullins. Houston scored one run in the bottom of the seventh and one in the bottom of the eighth to make it 5-7, but Mullins hit a come-from-behind three-run homer in the top of the ninth to give Baltimore a thrilling 8-7 victory. With the three-game win streak, Baltimore, which improved to 94 wins on the season (56 wins, .627 winning percentage), moved to within 2.5 games of the Tampa Bay Rays (92 wins, 59 losses, .609 winning percentage), who did not play today, and moved one step closer to winning the American League East.