Tim Rice (Tag The Shooter)/ALOST

akoiki-passport2 – by Adesina O. Koiki
A Lot of Sports Talk editor-in-chief

BALTIMORE — A special day started a special stretch of the season for the Baltimore Orioles, who will see nothing but division rivals for the next couple of weeks as the pennant chase heats up as the calendar inches closer to summer, and today’s latest victory was highlighted by the best offensive day in the career of another one of the franchise’s young starlets.

Kyle Stowers drove in four runs and had two of his three hits go for doubles as the Orioles won their fifth straight game with an 11-3 victory over the Boston Red Sox in a Memorial Day matinee. Cole Irvin threw five scoreless innings for Baltimore while Ryan Mountcastle also had three hits for the Orioles, who pounded out 13 hits and had jumped out to a 7-0 lead after just four innings.

Fresh off sweeping the Chicago White Sox in the Windy City over the weekend, the Orioles start a stretch in which their next 13 games are against their fellow American League East division rivals, and that does not include a series later in the month on the road against the division-leading New York Yankees. But the run might prove to be a source of good vibes for the Orioles, as they are a league-best 40-22 against the AL East since the start of last season, one of the main reasons why they took home the division title in 2023.

Stowers was a little-used rookie in 2023, a young top prospect stuck in a crowded outfield, but with the recent trade of reserve Ryan McKenna to San Francisco, Stowers is in line for a little more playing time — and he made the most of his fourth start of the season this afternoon. In the fourth inning, and with Baltimore already up 2-0, Stowers hit a two-bagger to left with the bases loaded off Red Sox starter Cooper Criswell to score two and double the Orioles’ lead. Cedric Mullins followed with a triple to score Stowers and Jordan Westburg to extend Baltimore’s lead to 6-0.

Stowers hit a ground-rule double in his next at-bat in the sixth, then drove in his fourth run of the game with a single to center in the seventh that scored Ryan O’Hearn and gave the Orioles an 11-0 lead.

After going 2-for-30 at the plate and enduring injuries to his nose and shoulder during a disjointed 2023 campaign, Stowers admits to being more comfortable being in the big league locker room this time around. And it shows.

“Really fun for me to have a big day, fun for the team to get a win,” Stowers said. “A long road for me to get back here from last year, so just cool to have a big moment today. Most importantly, happy to get the win.”

*Editor’s note: Above the byline is the photo gallery from Monday evening’s game, with photos taken by DC-area photographer Tim Rice. After clicking on the first photo to enlarge the picture, make sure to press the left and right arrow buttons to scroll through the rest of the pictures. There are 23 pictures in total.

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Tags : Baltimore OriolesBoston Red SoxMajor League Baseball

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