The Baltimore Orioles won three games and lost two throughout the last week. Baltimore beat the Tampa Rays, 2-1, in a three-game series in Tampa, Fla., and then split the first two games of a three-game series with the Yankees in New York. The Orioles currently own a 38-35 record, as of June 22, trailing the Yankees by one game for third place in the American League East division.

Adam Jones

Baltimore Orioles center fielder Adam Jones makes a leaping catch on a fly ball by Tampa Bay Rays’ Yunel Escobar during the seventh inning of a baseball game Wednesday, June 18, 2014, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O’Meara)

June 16-18:Orioles Beat Rays in Series, 2-1

Baltimore opened the week with a three game away series against the East division’s last place Tampa Bay Rays.

In Game One of the series, the Orioles suffered a 5-4 loss. Starting pitcher Wei-Yin Chen was shaky on the mound, giving up three earned runs with only three strikeouts as he lasted into the seventh inning. Relief pitchers Darren O’Day and Brian Matusz both gave up runs late in the eighth inning that pushed Tampa ahead for the win. Outfielder Adam Jones and pinch hitter Delmon Young both had home runs.

The Orioles bounced back the next day in Game Two of the series with a 7-5 win. Third baseman Chris Davis went the yard for his 12th home run of the season in addition to hitting four RBI’s in the game. Designated hitter Steve Pearce also hit a home run with two RBI. The Orioles starter Miguel Gonzalez performed poorly, allowing eight hits and four earned runs in just five innings pitched. But Baltimore’s bullpen was able to over come Gonzalez’ shortcomings by giving up only one more run during the rest of the game as Zack Britton eventually closed out the game in the ninth inning for his eighth save of the season.

Baltimore stamped the series victory in Game Three with a 2-0 shutout over the Rays on June 18. There wasn’t much Baltimore action coming from the plate as designated hitter Nelson Cruz hit a home run and Pearce hit a double RBI for the Orioles only two runs. But that was all they needed as the pitching was excellent for the Orioles. Starting pitcher Kevin Gausman went the first six innings without giving up a run. Tommy Hunter took over for the next two innings and kept the shutout alive before Britton finished it off for his ninth save of the season.

June 20-21:Baltimore Tie Yankees in Two Games

Baltimore Orioles’ Adam Jones, left, is greeted by Chris Davis after hitting a solo home run against the New York Yankees in the first inning of a baseball game, Saturday, June 21, 2014, in New York. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

The Orioles lost Game One of a 3 game road series against the Yankees, 5-3, on June 20. Baltimore got out to a good start against the Yankees, leading 2-1, going into the ninth inning. Starting pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez gave up an early run in the first inning before lasting the next six innings without giving up a run. But relief pitcher Britton fell apart in the ninth inning, blowing his save opportunity with four runs allowed as the Yankees ran away with the win.

But the next night in Game Two, Baltimore was able to tie the series with a dominant 6-1 win. Four different Orioles players went the yard as Jones, Pearce, Cruz and shortstop J.J. Hardy each hit home runs. Starting pitcher Bud Norris handled the first five innings allowing just three hits and one run. Ryan Webb came out the bullpen to take over the sixth inning and Hunter closed out the game.

Next-up: the Orioles will close out its series with the Yankees June 22 before returning to Baltimore to host the Chicago White Sox in a three-game series on June 23-25. Baltimore then hosts the Rays for four games on June 27-29, including a makeup game that was postponed from earlier this season.

Perry Green

AFRO Sports Editor