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Orioles-Yankees series preview: Four in The Bronx before heading home

With time ticking down on the O’s season, it’s time to lament what could have been rather than speculate wildly about what will never be.

New York Yankees v Baltimore Orioles Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

The Orioles will start a four game series in New York against the Yankees tonight, and there’s no reason to continue to pretend as though these games matter. They matter in the sense that they are Major League Baseball games and that they are being played; they just don’t matter in the sense that the O’s could possibly be headed to the play-in, or play-offs, or whatever.

Coming off of a series loss in Toronto, Baltimore now sports a 72-74 record on the season. That leaves 16 games left to be played. Last year, it took the Orioles 89 wins to make the play-in game. Winning all 16 remaining games would mean a final record of 88-74 for the 2017 Orioles.

The way the AL has shaped-up this season, chances are it won’t take 88 wins to make the Wild Card game, but chances are the Orioles don’t finish 16-0, either.

After an impressive seven game win streak ending on September 31, the Birds have gone 4-9—snapping a corresponding six game losing streak just last night. The win came on a game where the O’s scored two in the first inning and won 2-1 thanks to the performances of Kevin Gausman, Darren O’Day, and the pitcher formerly known as Zach Britton.

Let’s take a look at game times and pitching match-ups for the series to come:

Thursday, September 14, 2017 @ 7:05pm ET

Wade Miley (8-12, 4.96 ERA) vs Masahiro Tanaka (11-11, 4.82 ERA)

Wade “no nickname” Miley and his 1.66 WHIP will take the hill for the Orioles. Wade is trending “meh,” even for Wade, allowing 6 ER in 11.2 IP across two starts so far in September and going 0-2 in those games. That’s a 4.63 ERA, though—which is better than his overall 4.96 ERA for the season. What can we expect from Wade in this game? The safe money is on a short outing and a bad result.

Masahiro “Masa” Tanaka will oppose the Orioles to start this game, and he’s been a level of mediocre this season that would be a huge boost to Baltimore’s rotation. This product of Japan is trending “we have a chance” so far in September, going 1-1, allowing 8 ER in 11.0 IP across two starts (that’s a 6.55 ERA) after allowing only 7 ER in all of August.

Friday, September 15, 2017 @ 7:05pm ET

Gabriel Ynoa (1-1, 4.19 ERA) vs Luis Severino (12-6, 2.96 ERA)

Gabriel “also no nickname” Ynoa will start for the Orioles in game #2 of the series. Ynoa is most Ynotable for making his fourth Major League start against the Indians this past Saturday after posting a 5.25 ERA in AAA Norfolk this season across 21 starts. Gabriel is trending “alive” right now, which is a marked improvement over almost any other option for this rotation spot for the O’s.

Luis “Sevy” Severino will be taking on Ynoa and the Birds for this game, and that instantly makes the Orioles chances of winning pretty slim. I’m not saying the guy is Cy Young incarnate, but Sevy is trending “watch out,” having his best month yet in his great 2017 so far in September, sporting a 0.69 ERA across two starts where he has gone 1-0, allowing a single earned run over 13.0 IP. Dude’s got a sub-3 ERA for the season to go with a shiny 1.05 WHIP.

Saturday, September 16, 2017 @ 4:05pm ET

Jeremy Hellickson (8-9, 5.23 ERA) vs Jordan Montgomery (7-7, 4.24 ERA)

Jeremy “Helly” Hellickson has a cool nickname (looking at you, Wade Miley) and has fit right into the O’s rotation since being shipped over from Philadelphia. The problem is that the Orioles rotation sucks. Helly is trending “not an AL MLB starting pitcher,” having allowed 31 ER across 42.2 IP (6.54 ERA) over eight starts with the O’s since rejoining the American League in August.

Jordan “Monty” Montgomery throws the ball with is left hand, which is actually a good thing for the 2017 version of your Baltimore Orioles. The rookie is acquitting himself nicely this year, although he’s averaging just North of 5 IP per start. Monty is trending “consistent,” having only allowed more than 4 ER twice in a game this season (5 ER May 18 @ KC and 6 ER July 19 @ MIN). So far in September he’s had no decisions, but allowed 5 ER across 8.0 IP (5.63 ERA) over two starts. One of those was a game in which the Yankees beat the Orioles 7-4.

Sunday, September 17, 2017 @ 1:05pm ET

TBD vs CC Sabathia (11-5 3.85 ERA)

The timeless CC “Dub” Sabathia is enjoying success in his 17th full Major League season. He might be almost likable if he didn’t suit-up in pinstripes. Sabathia earned a ND against the Orioles at OPACY on September 5, allowing 5 ER across 5.1 IP. That was the first time CC allowed more than 4 ER in a game since May 9 of this year (5 ER @ CIN). CC Sabathia is trending “likely HOFer,” and he’s still pitching like it at the ripe, old baseball age of 37.

Possible starting pitchers for this “TBD” spot for the O’s include:

  • Chris Tillman (1-7, 7.82 ERA)
  • Ubaldo Jimenez (5-10, 6.75 ERA)
  • Dylan Bundy (13-9, 4.03 ERA) - but this would be on “normal” rest
  • Miguel Castro (3-1, 2.83 ERA) - hasn’t started a game since 2015 in AAA
  • Chris Davis (1-0, 0.00 ERA career) - hasn’t pitched prior to or since 2012 when he tossed two scoreless innings in extras against the Red Sox to earn the win. He only has a 92 wRC+ for the 2017 season, though, so expanding his role may be just the shock move the Orioles need right now.

Tell us in the comments section why you think you’ve got the number of Oriole wins in this series nailed-down. Tell us who you think will be or should be the fourth starter in the set. Express general despair at the state of the team. Really, do whatever.

Poll

How many games will the Orioles take from the Yankees in this upcoming series?

This poll is closed

  • 26%
    The Yankees will sweep the Orioles (0)
    (37 votes)
  • 42%
    1
    (60 votes)
  • 19%
    2
    (27 votes)
  • 4%
    3
    (6 votes)
  • 8%
    The Orioles will sweep the Yankees (4)
    (12 votes)
142 votes total Vote Now