BALTIMORE—Kendrys Morales took his cuts, and the ball didn't go out of the park.
It happens all the time to the best players in the land. On this occasion, however, Morales' homerless performance ended his attempt to make baseball history.
Morales had his home run streak snapped at seven games by the Baltimore Orioles, who ended an eight-game skid by defeating the Toronto Blue Jays 7-0 on Monday night.
Striving to tie the major league record of homering in eight straight games, Morales went 0 for 3 with a walk and did not hit the ball out of the infield. In his final chance, he swung through a slider from Paul Fry to strike out in the eighth inning.
“It had to end sooner or later," Morales said through a translator. "I couldn't expect it to go on forever.”
Then, with a smile, he added, “Maybe I hit another 10, 15, but it had to end.”
Though he failed to match the mark shared by Dale Long, Don Mattingly and Ken Griffey Jr., Morales owns the big league record for successive games with a home run by a switch-hitter. He also owns the franchise record for consecutive games with a long ball.
Facing Baltimore rookie David Hess, against whom he homered last week, Morales struck out in the first inning, grounded out in the fourth and drew a four-pitch walk in the sixth.
Morales endured an 0-for-29 skid in May and had only 14 homers on Aug. 14 before launching his improbable streak.
In other American League action yesterday, the White Sox beat the Yankees 6-2; and the Astros dominated the Athletics 11-4.
Meanwhile in National League play, the Nationals beat the Phillies 5-3; the Cubs mauled the Mets 7-4; and Giants blanked the Diamondbacks 2-0.
And in interleague action yesterday, the Angels defeated the Rockies 10-7.