The Baltimore Orioles have 21 wins this season. Of those 21, just five did not involve either a save situation or a walk-off win. I haven't done any research on the rest of the teams in the league, but that really doesn't feel like very many. I feel like what the Orioles need tonight to lift some weight off of their shoulders is to make their 22nd win of the season look a lot like their third, when they blew out the Yankees 14-5, or their 11th, when they topped Toronto by a score of 11-4. But hey, I'm not greedy. I don't need double digit runs. Even a nice 5-1 win would suit me just fine. So how about it, O's? Can you get that done?
When/Where to Watch
Time/location: 8:10 p.m., Kauffman Stadium
TV: MASN2 (BAL), FSKC (KC)
Radio: WBAL1090 (BAL), KCSP610 (KC)
Tonight will be the second time this season that the Orioles face their old teammate Jeremy Guthrie, and while I'm very fond of the guy I hope that the Orioles destroy him tonight the way it looked like they were going to a few weeks ago. On April 26th the Orioles scored two runs off of Guthrie in the first inning and made him throw 26 pitches. It looked like it might be a short night for Guthrie, but he got himself together after that inning and the Orioles didn't score again until the bottom of the tenth. Tonight I want the Guthrie who has given up 11 home runs in just over 50 innings. I want the Guthrie who has given up at least four runs in five of his eight starts. It probably won't happen, but a girl can dream.
On the flip side, I'd like the Chris Tillman back that we saw in the first three starts of this season. Remember when he went into the 9th inning against the Tigers and gave up just one run? It's been awhile since we've seen that Tillman. The current Tillman walks everyone in sight and barely knows what the sixth inning looks like. Tillman's ERA is 3.97, which is perfectly respectable. But since that 8 1/3 inning gem in Detroit, the ERA has gone up with every start. There is plenty of time to reverse the trend, but if he doesn't we might have to start calling him 2011 Brian Matusz.
Given the recent track records of both pitchers, we might end up seeing a slugfest. More likely though, one of them will get their act together against an offense that has trouble scoring runs. Fingers crossed that it's Tillman.
Orioles vs. Guthrie
|Nick Markakis - RF (L)||3-for-8, BB|
|Manny Machado - 3B (R)||0-for-5, BB|
|Adam Jones - CF (R)||0-for-8, BB, 2 K|
|Chris Davis - 1B (L)||1-for-16, HR, BB, 6 K|
|Nelson Cruz - DH (R)||4-for-25, 2B, 3 BB, 3 K|
|Steve Clevenger - C (L)||N/A|
|J.J. Hardy - SS (R)||2-for-11, K|
|Ryan Flaherty - 2B (L)||2-for-5, BB, 2 K|
|David Lough - LF (L)||0-for-3|
Royals vs. Tillman
|Norichika Aoki - RF (L)||N/A|
|Eric Hosmer - 1B (L)||0-for-4, BB|
|Salvador Perez - C (R)||1-for-2, HR|
|Alex Gordon - LF (L)||3-for-9, 2 HR, 2 K|
|Billy Butler - DH (R)||2-for-11, 2B, HR, BB, K|
|Johnny Giavotella - 2B (R)||N/A|
|Mike Moustakas - 3B (L)||3-for-6, HR, K|
|Alcides Escobar - SS (R)||3-for-8, 2B|
Jarrod Dyson - CF (L)
According to the National Weather Service, there is a 30% chance of showers before 9 p.m. (that'd be 10 p.m. on the east coast). Temperature at game time will be around 55 degrees and the winds will be light at about 5 mph when the game begins and calming as the game goes on.