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Orioles @ Mariners lineups and game notes - July 26

Manny Machado returns after missing four games with some back worrys. Norris is on the mound against Chris Young. The Orioles can take the series with a win.

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Last night's matchup lived up to the expectations. Two pitchers with dominant stuff left the opposing lineups baffled. Each of the righties made maybe one mistake each and paid for it. The quality of arms will take a step down this afternoon. Again it is a pair of righties but they feature more of a bulldog mentality rather than the greyhounds we witnessed in Seattle yesterday.

Pitchers

RHP Chris Young, Seattle

2014 stats: 20 G, 19 GS, 8-6, 3.22 ERA, 117.1 IP, 94 H, 18 HR, 38 BB, 70 SO, .219 BAA, 1.13 WHIP
Last start (@ LA Angels on July 20): 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 10 H, 0 BB, 7 SO, ND

The Princeton alum has quietly been one of the best value players in all of baseball this season. He makes just $1.25 million in 2014 but has blown players making ten times that amount out of the water.

He is a fly ball pitcher, not doubt about it; 57.5 percent of balls are in the air off of him. He is perfect for Safeco, which explains his home/road splits. In Seattle he is pitching to an ERA of 2.45; away he has a 4.09.

And let's look how he does against righties and lefties. Southpaws hold their own with a .241 but righties hit a paltry .183. That is the number of a dominant relief pitcher, not a middling starter. Absolutely baffling.

If you guessed that his batting average against on balls in play is incredibly low, you would be right. It is just .218; a far cry from his career number of .250 and the league average of .300.

In his first season in the northwest he has used four pitches. Here is how Fangraphs breaks them down:

Pitch Type Usage Velocity
Fastball 66.6% 85.4
Slider 25.6% 78.4
Curveball 1.1% 69.6
Changeup 6.7% 78.5

RHP Bud Norris, Baltimore

2014 stats: 16 G 16 GS, 8-6, 3.78 ERA, 97.2 IP, 87 H, 12 HR, 31 BB, 70 SO, .240 BAA, 1.21 WHIP
Last start (@ LA Angels on July 21): 6.2 IP, 1 ER, 8 H, 2 BB, 8 SO, W

Bud was pretty awesome in a big game against a prestigious offense in his last outing in Anaheim; crotch grab and all. He rediscovered the strikeout and kept the ball in the park for the first time in three games. All of this despite the Angels getting lucky by hitting .400 on balls in play against him.

The Mariners lineup doesn't belong in the same league as the Angels but that hasn't stopped Norris from struggling with them in the past. In three games he is 1-2 with a 5.09 ERA and a batting average against of .275. Expect a better showing tonight.

Lineups

Orioles

RF Nick Markakis (L)
DH Delmon Young (R)
CF Adam Jones (R)
LF Nelson Cruz (R)
1B Chris Davis (L)
SS J.J. Hardy (R)
3B Manny Machado (R)
2B Ryan Flaherty (L)
C Nick Hundley (R)

Only two current Orioles have ever faced Young. Pearce is 1-for-2 with a double. Hardy is 0-for-6. Not too much else to mention here. The Orioles haven't been banging the ball around in spacious Safeco yet they still managed to win with home runs, a solo apiece for Davis and Cruz.

The dong by Nellie assured him of his sixth consecutive season of 20 home runs and 75 RBI. It goes without saying, but what a signing he has been. (I said it!)

Mariners (w/ career stats against Norris)

RF Endy Chavez (L) 2-for-6, .333 BA, 2 2B
CF James Jones (L) none
2B Robinson Cano (L) none
DH Kendrys Morales (S) 2-for-5, .400 BA, 1 BB
3B Kyle Seager (L) 3-for-8, .375 BA, 1 HR, 1 BB, 1 SO
LF Dustin Ackley (L) 2-for-5, .400 BA, 1 2B
1B Logan Morrison (L) 3-for-5, .600 BA, 1 2B
SS Brad Miller (L) 2-for-3, .666 BA, 1 HR, 1 BB
C Jesus Secre (R) none

Don't go overboard Oriole fans. Yes, all of those numbers are very big. But it's a small sample size all the way around. Cano is the one that Norris needs to worry about. He is the driving force behind the little Mariners offense that has scratched across one run in 19 innings of ball the last two nights. Markakis would tell you they shouldn't have even gotten that one run.

On the bench: Mike Zunino (0-for-1 with two walks and a strikeout against Norris) and Corey Hart (5-for-18 with two home runs, two walks and six strikeouts)