Orioles vs Blue Jays lineups and game preview - 4/12/14

Patrick Smith

Yeah, so, last night stunk. Hope our #5 starter is better than is theirs. Also, happy Hardy day!

So, as Steve summarized, last night was not a fine time.  The Orioles defense and offense look to rebound today with the return of J.J. Hardy from back spasm and hopefully David Lough getting out of the funk.

Pitchers

Drew Hutchison, Toronto Blue Jays

Hutchison won the fifth spot of the Jays rotation after missing majority of 2013 after undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2012.  He is still only 23 and they obviously liked what they saw him in 58.2 IP sample from 2012 (and what they saw in ST) to give him the starting job despite missing most of last year.  So far, in two starts this year, Hutchison has had mixed results - 1-1, 8.2 IP with 10 K's but 6 BB's and 6ER's.  He's not a guy who's regarded to have a super-high ceiling that people romanticize about young pitchers - averages around low-90's in fastball which he's thrown 75.8% of the time in the ML so it's not like he mixes secondary pitches that much (slider and change).  However, at least in the minors, he was a strike-thrower with the cumulative 2.4 BB/9IP with 4.06 K/BB, which is good.  I don't see him doing as well in ML as he did in minors anytime soon but again, he's still young and who knows how well he'll learn in ML.

Bud Norris, Baltimore Orioles

Norris, in his lone start, was not good, allowing 5 ER's and 9 hits in 5IP versus the Tigers.  The current Blue Jays lineup has hit Norris... quite well with .865 OPS.  Which isn't the most encouraging thing but hey, it's a new day.  If you want to weigh a lot from the past stats, Jose Reyes has a .375 avg against Norris in 16 AB's but he's out of the lineup.  The only current Jays hitter who has hit a homer off him is Colby Rasmus and that looks like a blip in the radar - he only has a .659 OPS in 22 AB's against the righty.

The big news for the lineup is that Hardy will be back after the lower back injury has kept him out.  Also, Steve Clevenger hitting 5th - quite interesting to me.  He does have a .400 average this season in... whopping 5 AB's (both hits were a double and a triple, fun fact) and he had a hot bat in ST (1.207 OPS).  It's something that I had not thought of as a possibility that much so it's amusing.  Hope he does well (he's my high school alumnus!).  The lineup did not show up well last night - hopefully the addition of Hardy and Lough are catalysts for something tonight?  We shall see.


Lineup

BALTIMORE ORIOLES TORONTO BLUE JAYS
Nick Markakis - RF Melky Cabrera - LF
Nelson Cruz - DH Maicer Izturis - 2B
Chris Davis - 1B Jose Bautista - RF
Adam Jones - CF Edwin Encarnacion - 1B
Steve Clevenger - C Adam Lind - DH
J.J. Hardy - SS Dioner Navarro - C
Steve Lombardozzi - 2B Colby Rasmus - CF
David Lough - LF Brett Lawrie - 3B
Jonathan Schoop - 3B Ryan Goins - SS
Bud Norris - RHP Drew Hutchison - RHP

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