Series Preview: O's @ Blue Jays (13 - 15 September)

Markakis hit a homer! - Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

After a few significant blows courtesy of the New York Yankees, the O's have dropped 2.5 games back in the Wild Card race. They'll head to Toronto looking to recover. Hammel, Tillman, and Gonzalez for the O's. Redmond, Rogers, and Buehrle for the Jays.

Friday, 13 September:  Jason Hammel vs. Todd Redmond
Career Numbers Hammel vs. Blue Jays
Redmond vs. O's
IP 61.2 4.0
ERA 4.52 6.75
FIP 5.50 8.13
Slash Line (Past Teams) .265/.332/.478 .250/.333/.688
Slash Line (Current Players) .313/.333/.580 .267/.389/.733

Jason Hammel has 61.2 career innings against the Blue Jays.  Those 61.2 have been rather long innings, as shown by the statistics.  He's allowing a .977 OPS at Rogers Centre in 5 career starts and an .810 overall number.  Seven of the twelve homers allowed have come north of the border.  Edwin Encarnacion and Jose Reyes have destroyed Hammel when they've seen him, slugging a combined 4 homers in 32 PA.  Both have OPS numbers north of 1.00.

Todd Redmond is 28, but in just his second season at the MLB level.  He has one previous start against the O's, in which he lasted just 4 innings and allowed 3 runs (2 homers).  He does, however, have good numbers at Rogers Centre (.538 OPS) through 6 starts in the park.

Saturday, 14 September:  Chris Tillman vs. Esmil Rogers
Career Numbers Tillman vs. Blue Jays
Rogers vs. O's
IP 48.0 10.2
ERA 4.13 1.69
FIP 5.86 1.76
Slash Line (Past Teams) .258/.314/.494 .225/.262/.275
Slash Line (Current Players) .286/.321/.416 .161/.257/.355

Chris Tillman is another guy who's career stats against the opposing team do not strike fear.  Like Hammel, Tillman has also allowed 12 homers, this time in just 48 innings.  That and a nice .891 OPS at Rogers Centre have inflated his FIP to near 6.00, which is pretty scary.  Those numbers have been improving, however, as Tillman has grown as a pitcher.  He's been a bit better against Toronto's sluggers, holding Adam Lind to a sub-.600 OPS and allowing just one homer to Encarnacion.

Esmil Rogers has a solid 10.2 innings against the O's, but has yet to start (all 7 appearances came in relief).  He doesn't have amazing numbers at home (.810 OPS), but it's difficult to say much when only 7 of 22 home appearances were starts.  Additionally, there isn't a significant difference between his overall numbers as both a start and a reliever.

Sunday, 15 September:  Miguel Gonzalez vs. Mark Buehrle
Career Numbers Gonzalez vs. Blue Jays
Buehrle vs. O's
IP 35.2 120.2
ERA 3.79 3.28
FIP 3.99 4.19
Slash Line (Past Teams) .215/.270/.385 .260/.298/.411
Slash Line (Current Players) .254/.320/.448 .290/.325/.439

Gonzalez has six starts against Toronto with pretty solid numbers.  His .653 OPS is among his best against any team.  He has really flourished inside of domes, which is positive for this series.  He has a .651 OPS with 2 homers allowed at Rogers Centre in four starts.  Less than exciting numbers against current Blue Jays, but nothing horrible.

Mark Buehrle is a soft-tossing lefty, so he should be feared by all.  He'll make his 20th career start against the Orioles, posting middling to average numbers in the previous 19.  He's a guy who does not allow many homers, giving up just 14 in 120.2 innings (keep in mine that both Tillman and Hammel have allowed 12 in many, many fewer innings).  Nick Markakis seems to have figured him out, however, posting a 1.136 OPS in 37 PA, including 2 homers.  Adam Jones also has solid numbers in 20 PA.  I'd prefer to sit Danny Valencia and Mike Morse for this game, however.

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