The Orioles have not been able to hit their way out of a wet paper bag for the last couple of games. There's not much they can do about it. Even if manager Buck Showalter was inclined to go for wholesale lineup shuffling as a response to this team-wide slump, they don't presently have the personnel to try to do it.
There is a three man bench right now, and one of those spots on the bench goes to the other starting catcher, Caleb Joseph. It is Matt Wieters' day to start, so here he is starting.
Tonight's Rays starter, Matt Moore, is a left-handed pitcher, so plugging in Hyun Soo Kim is probably right out. In fact, the only thing there really is to do is to put Nolan Reimold into the field and hope for the best. Reimold gets to patrol left field, with Joey Rickard shifting over to right field and Mark Trumbo to the DH spot in the lineup. Good luck tonight, Nolan. Maybe you can get some more playing time if you do well.
Tonight's starting nine, who will be in action in the field behind Chris Tillman:
1. Joey Rickard - RF
2. Manny Machado - 3B
3. Adam Jones - CF
4. Chris Davis - 1B
5. Mark Trumbo - DH
6. Matt Wieters - C
7. J.J. Hardy - SS
8. Nolan Reimold - LF
9. Jonathan Schoop - 2B
The one day experiment of Jones batting ahead of Machado was apparently just that. It is back the way that it should be now. With Rickard cooling off after an unexpectedly strong start to the season, perhaps Machado's best place is even the leadoff spot, but that's another question for another day.
This lineup will look a lot better if Jones, Wieters, and Schoop start hitting better. And if Davis starts hitting better, for that matter - his OBP and slugging numbers are good but his batting average is not.
Through the season so far, the Orioles actually have the second-best OPS in the American League when facing lefties. That is a big difference compared to last year when they were horrible against lefties. Small sample size or new trend? We'll get a better idea either way tonight.