Things got heated last night between Tigers outfielder Torii Hunter and O's righty Bud Norris. You can imagine tensions will still be high as the two division-leading clubs face off again tonight. One misplaced pitch could empty the benches again.
Time: 7:05pm Eastern Place: Oriole Park at Camden Yards
TV: MASN (Baltimore), Fox Sports Detroit, MLB Network
Radio: Orioles Radio Network; 97.1 FM (Detroit)
RHP Ubaldo Jimenez, Orioles
2014 stats: 7 G, 7 GS, 2-4, 4.73 ERA, 40.0 IP, 21 ER, 5 HR, 20 BB, 34 SO, .272 BAA, 1.58 WHIP
Last start (@ Tampa Bay): 5.1 IP, 1 ER, 7 H, 2 BB, 3 SO, W
In his last outing, Jimenez had a Tillman-esque performance by gutting out five and a third innings of one run ball. Before that, he looked great against Minnesota. Both were signs of improvement from the big free agent. However, tonight is a test on another level. Detroit's offense is superior to the lineups faced in Ubaldo's previous two starts. This game will also be outside in muggy, downtown Baltimore. A much different environment than chilly Minneapolis or climate-controlled St. Pete.
LHP Drew Smyly, Detroit
2014 stats: 6 G, 4 GS, 2-2, 2.96 ERA, 27.1 IP, 9 ER, 3 HR, 9 BB, 23 SO, .219 BAA, 1.10 WHIP
Last start (vs. Houston): 5.1 IP, 3 ER, 5 H, 3 BB, 2 SO, L
|Pitch Type||Usage||Average Velocity|
So far in 2014, Smyly has looked good on the mound. Opponents are hitting a paltry .219 against him. That number includes a ridiculously low .083 from lefties. Righties have fared much better with a .264 average. It is possible the Detroit pitcher has been a bit bit lucky with a .257 batting average against on balls in play and has managed to leave 81.4% of runners on base.
He is on pace for a career low in strikeouts per nine innings with only 7.57 and is walking more hitters than his normal amount with nearly three per nine innings.
His last appearance against the Orioles was on April 4 when he went three innings in relief, only giving up one run, walking one and striking out three to take home the win.
Tigers (w/ career statistics vs. Jimenez)
|2B Ian Kinsler (R)||4-for-14, .286 BA, 3 2B, 3 BB, 2 SO|
|RF Torii Hunter (R)||7-for-18, .389 BA 1 2B, 1 BB, 2 SO|
|DH Miguel Cabrera (R)||14-for-41, .341 BA, 4 2B, 1 HR, 8 BB, 8 SO|
|1B Victor Martinez (S)||7-for-21, .333 BA, 1 2B, 3 HR, 1 BB, 3 SO|
|LF J.D. Martinez (R)||0-for-2, .000 BA, 1 BB, 1 SO|
|CF Austin Jackson (R)||7-for-21, .333 BA, 1 BB, 9 SO|
|3B Nick Castellanos (R)||none|
|C Alex Avila (L)||5-for-22, .227 BA, 1 2B, 1 HR, 7 BB, 7 SO|
|SS Andrew Romine (S)||none|
Yikes! Five of the first six hitters in the lineup have crushed Ubaldo. This includes Hunter, who may be one inside pitch away from a full out charge towards the mound. We may be in for an old-fashioned brouhaha.
That said, Bud Norris made this vaunted offense look silly at times last night. If he can do it, then Jimenez certainly has the ability to do so....right?
Orioles (w/ career statistics vs. Smyly)
|RF Nick Markakis (L)||0-for-4|
|3B Manny Machado (R)||0-for-1|
|CF Adam Jones (R)||0-for-3|
|1B Chris Davis (L)||0-for-3, 3 SO|
|LF Nelson Cruz (R)||1-for-5, 3 BB, 2 SO|
|SS J.J. Hardy (R)||0-for-1, 1 BB|
|DH Steve Pearce (R)||0-for-1, 1 SO|
|2B Jonathan Schoop (R)||0-for-1, SO|
|C Caleb Joseph (R)||none|
Alright, so those numbers don't look good, especially after the offense's poor performance last night. But it is also a very small sample size across the board. Notice that the lineup is again loaded with right handed hitters. This is part of Buck's M.O. against southpaws, but Smyly has especially dominated lefties. As mentioned above, they are only batting .083 this season, and just .193 in Smyly's career.
Joseph is back in the lineup to face a lefty. That means the red hot Clevenger is sitting; he is 0-for-1 in his only at-bat against Smyly. I feel like Caleb is gonna notch his first big league hit tonight.
But as one member of #TeamSteve hits the pine another emerges. Pearce is back in the lineup
- Dylan Bundy threw batting practice down in Sarasota today, and it went well.
- MASN's Steve Melewski is reporting that Kevin Gausman will start tomorrow for the Orioles. CC's Mark Brown talks more about this here.
At seven o'clock it will be 79 degrees in Baltimore with 62 percent humidity. There is a zero percent chance of rain at game time, but it then jumps to 40 percent an hour later. There will be eight mile per hour winds blowing south east. It will be an overcast night with temperatures dipping into the high 60s by the end of the night.
*Courtesy of The Weather Channel