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Joseph leaves club to tend to family medical emergency

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BALTIMORE -- In the midst of the best stretch of his career, Caleb Joseph had to leave the Orioles before Friday's game to tend to a family medical emergency. Nick Hundley was in the starting lineup, playing catcher and batting ninth.

"He's had a little family medical issue he's got to look in to," manager Buck Showalter said. "We'll see if he gets back by game time."

Joseph, who was also out of the lineup on Wednesday, has homered in four consecutive games -- the record for consecutive games with a homer by a catcher is six. He returned to Camden Yards during the game, but didn't play during the Orioles' 12-2 win against the Cardinals.

Chris Tillman, who started against the Cardinals on Friday, is the O's only active starting pitcher with a better ERA when Hundley is behind the plate. With Hundley catching, Tillman's ERA is 3.87. With Joseph, that rises to 5.29.

Joseph's recent hot streak has bumped his batting average up to .220. He's also thrown out a league leading 49 percent of runners attempting a solen base. Ryan Flaherty or Steve Pearce were available as the Orioles' emergency catcher.

David Wilson is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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