Daniel Cabrera, RH Casey Fossum, LH
(0-1, 47.25) (0-0, 11.57)
Game time: 7:15pm on FSN (Florida).
Weather: partly sunny, high 70s
Baltimore: 4-4, 2nd place, 2.5 GB
Tampa Bay: 3-5, 5th place, 3.5 GB
Let's all take a moment, once again, to applaud Kris Benson, who is shattering expectations thus far. Last night in the O's 8-4 victory, he went 7 innings for the second straight game time; he gave up only two runs to lower his ERA to a stingy 1.93. The jury is still out (let's see him against someone other than Tampa Bay), but you could hardly ask for a better beginning as an Oriole. If he keeps this up, his addition and Ponson' s subtraction alone could be worth an additional 5-10 victories.
Meanwhile, the O's are back at .500 and looking to extend. Tonight's matchup features a coupla wild thangs: our own Daniel Cabrera, who walked six guys in one inning last week; and Tampa Bay's Casey Fossum, who hit the same batter (Reed Johnson) three times in the D-Rays' victory over Toronto last Friday. I thought about putting their ERAs from last season in the box above, but their current numbers are just too funny not to post.
Perlozzo thinks Cabrera was overthrowing and expects him to calm down tonight. Likewise, Fossum is probably a little better than his last outing indicates. Should be a fun game, as the O's
go for the sweep try to win three straight for the first time this year. Too bad no one in Baltimore can watch it.
- Around the AL East: Boston won their home opener, beating Toronto 5-3; the Yankees followed suit downing the KC Royals 9-7.
- Upping his stats: Brian Roberts has gotten healthy on D-Rays pitching: he has lifted his average up to .265 after being near the Mendoza line for the Red Sox series.
- Speaking of Shamu: In case you missed it, Sidney Ponson made his Cards debut on Sunday. His line is right about what you'd expect from a fifth starter: 5 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 HR, 1 K, 0 BB. His ERA stands at 5.40, and apart from the lack of walks, his first game is about what we've come to expect from Sid.
- Adios: SC returns sometime today, and I'll be handing the keys to CC back to him. It's been my pleasure to feed your O's appetites this week.