Coming off a 2-2 weekend series against the Blue Jays, the Orioles turn their attention to the last place Rays. What team they are playing has almost no bearing on their performance. They are 5-5 over their last 10. The signs continue to be there: this is a .500 team. Maybe they will even beat up the Rays and then go lose to whoever they play next. But enough about that, let's look at tonight.
Some things look good for Odorizzi, like his number of strikeouts. There's also the fact that he was only really bad in April and he's been decent since, at least as far as his ERA goes. But then he started six games in May and averaged fewer than 5 IP/GS in those games. That is a rough go of it. Even the Orioles starting rotation winces.
Odorizzi last faced the Orioles in the midst of that April struggle. He pitched five innings and gave up three runs in a 3-0 loss for the Rays. That's sort of promising, I guess.
After watching dopey schmoes like Ubaldo Jimenez walk everything in sight, it's going to be nice to watch a pitcher who hasn't issued a walk in either of his last two starts. I know that I jinxed him now. I'm sorry. Chen is working on a 1.45 ERA in three June starts.
Chen faced the Rays in April as well, giving up a run in 6.1 innings as the Orioles notched a 7-1 victory.
|BALTIMORE ORIOLES||TAMPA BAY RAYS|
|Nick Markakis - RF||D. Jennings - CF|
|Manny Machado - 3B||Yunel Escobar - SS|
|Adam Jones - CF||Evan Longoria - 3B|
|Chris Davis - 1B||Ben Zobrist - LF|
|Nelson Cruz - DH||James Loney - DH|
|J.J. Hardy - SS||Sean Rodriguez - 1B|
|David Lough - LF||Logan Forsythe - 2B|
|Ryan Flaherty - 2B||Ryan Hanigan - C|
|Caleb Joseph - C||Kevin Kiermaier - RF|
|Wei-Yin Chen - LHP||Jake Odorizzi - RHP|
One bit of good news is that the Rays struggle offensively against just about anyone. Against left-handers they are batting .237/.305/.356. They've scored the fewest runs of any American League team in total.
The Orioles bat .264/.316/.410. Odorizzi is not prone to walking a lot of batters, so it doesn't matter that the Orioles walk less than anyone. I know, that does matter, because it's probably one of the big symptoms of whatever their problem can be offensively.
That's a brutal bottom of the lineup on both sides.