With the number of remaining games dwindling along with the Orioles playoff chances, each game should really begin with a sketch of what would have to happen for the Orioles to make it from here on. This seems like a futile exercise on the night where MLB's worst starting pitcher by WHIP, Wade Miley, is in action.
There it is, though. The Orioles have 16 games to play and they are 4.5 games out of the race. They are basically out of it unless they win every remaining game. Their "tragic number" - the number of Orioles losses and Twins wins that would eliminate them - is now just 13. The six game losing streak has probably killed them, though mathematical elimination is a week away still.
So with that in mind, here begins a series against the Yankees. They're stuck in the Bronx for four games. There is no escape. They have to face a team whose run differential is 200 runs better than their own. Miley is starting. Jeremy Hellickson is starting. Chris Tillman may be starting. It's happening, baby.
Mark Trumbo staying in the lineup is happening. Seth Smith in right field is happening. One bit of good news may be that this has been a tough season for Masahiro Tanaka, who is here in mid-September with a 4.82 ERA. He's allowed 30 home runs in 158.2 innings this year. Is it home run-hitting weather in New York right now? Probably not, but the Orioles need to hit some anyway.
|BALTIMORE ORIOLES||NEW YORK YANKEES|
|Tim Beckham - SS||Jacoby Ellsbury - CF|
|Manny Machado - 3B||Aaron Judge - RF|
|Jonathan Schoop - 2B||Gary Sanchez - C|
|Adam Jones - CF||Matt Holliday - DH|
|Trey Mancini - LF||Chase Headley - 1B|
|Chris Davis - 1B||Didi Gregorius - SS|
|Mark Trumbo - DH||Todd Frazier - 3B|
|Welington Castillo - C||Ronald Torreyes - 2B|
|Seth Smith - RF||Clint Frazier - LF|
|Wade Miley - LHP||Masahiro Tanaka - RHP|