CINCINNATI — Cole Irvin has had to master adapting to new situations.

There was the trade across the country, which saw him switch an Athletics uniform for an Orioles one. Then, in his new home, there has been a constant shift in role. He was a starter. Then optioned, unclear if he would be called back up. He came back as a starter, then was moved to the bullpen. The cycle continued for the rest of last season.

He’s grown quite used to new things popping up. So, on Friday, not even a rain delay that was advertised as short but ended up lasting nearly three hours was going to stop his roll. He weathered that, then handled a warmup with a fireworks show directly above him — with the lengthy delay, the Reds had to run their postgame entertainment before first pitch due to late-night noise regulations.

That one he didn’t mind, until he was in the bullpen and it was shaking the walls and making it impossible to hear.

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“I felt like I was in ‘The Sandlot,’ so that’s pretty cool,” Irvin said.

When it finally came time to play, Irvin let nothing stand in his way. He pitched 6 1/3 innings as the Orioles beat the Reds 3-0. He’s taking it all in during this streak — and having fun doing so.

“I’m just blessed to be in the major leagues and be able to wear the uniform,” Irvin said. “I’m going to enjoy every bit of it while i’m playing. I’m going to have a blast, I love what I do and I enjoy the little aspects of our game.”

In a season when the Orioles — and the league — have been plagued by injuries, Irvin has been a steady hand. Kyle Bradish and John Means started the year on the injured list and are just now making their season debuts, with Means set to make his first start Saturday. Grayson Rodriguez and Tyler Wells have recently been added to the injured list and have no return dates.

That’s left Corbin Burnes and Irvin as the Orioles’ only starters from their opening day roster to have made every outing. And Irvin has made the most of his opportunity.

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“We can never have enough starting pitching in his game right now,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “The more the better; hopefully, we have to make some tough decisions.”

If not for the injuries, Irvin likely would have ended up in the bullpen. Now it’s hard to justify moving him. Coming into Friday’s start, he held a 3.49 ERA and was riding a streak of 14 1/3 scoreless innings. That now stands at 20 2/3 after his performance against the Reds.

He gave up one hit early, a single in the first from Elly De La Cruz. Irvin didn’t allow another hit until the seventh, when De La Cruz again got to him, this time hitting a double down the left field line. Irvin struck out Spencer Steer, but, with a dangerous runner like De La Cruz on and the heart of the order coming up, Irvin was removed at just 72 pitches.

Irvin struck out four and walked none, once again working ahead of hitters, locating his pitches and keeping batters off balanced.

“I think he’s pitching with a ton of confidence right now,” Hyde said. “It’s confidence in what he’s throwing, pitching with a ton of conviction.”

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Yennier Cano took over, getting the last two outs of the seventh. Danny Coulombe pitched the eighth and Craig Kimbrel the ninth, Kimbrel’s first outing since leaving Sunday’s game with upper back tightness.

It took time, but the Orioles finally gave Irvin support in the seventh inning after they drove out Reds starter Hunter Greene. Jorge Mateo opened the inning with a single, stole second and advanced to third on a flyout. Adley Rutschman drove him in with a double. Ryan O’Hearn then padded the Orioles lead with a towering two-run homer.

Danielle Allentuck covers the Orioles for The Baltimore Banner. She previously reported on the Rockies for the Denver Gazette and general sports assignments for The New York Times as part of its fellowship program. A Maryland native, Danielle grew up in Montgomery County and graduated from Ithaca College.

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