Round one of the interleague regional showdown between the Orioles and the Nationals was a bit of a snoozefest.
The Orioles, even in crappy seasons, have always had their fair share of success against the Nats. The O's entered this season with a 38-26 all-time record against their Mid-Atlantic "rivals." But the 2018 Birds are hard-pressed to win games against anyone, let alone teams that are actually good, and so it wasn't a surprise when the Nationals wiped the floor with them in game one of the series, 6-0, on Memorial Day.
For the encore, the O's are shuffling their lineup against former Oriole Jeremy Hellickson. Jonathan Schoop moves to the leadoff spot, a role he has filled only four previous games in his career. Buck Showalter continues to throw potential leadoff hitters against a wall and see what sticks. Schoop is the sixth Oriole to man the leadoff spot this season, following Trey Mancini, Joey Rickard, Craig Gentry, Tim Beckham, and, regrettably, Chris Davis.
Speaking of Davis, he's inexplicably moving into the cleanup spot despite his atrocious offensive performance thus far in 2018. It's Davis's fourth time batting cleanup this year. In his previous three games in that spot, he was 1-for-13 with six strikeouts. He does, however, own a .367 career average and 1.091 OPS against Hellickson.
Elsewhere, the slumping Trey Mancini is out of the lineup, with Jace Peterson replacing him in left field. Will the lineup shuffling help, or is it just rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic? Let's find out together.
|WASHINGTON NATIONALS||BALTIMORE ORIOLES|
|Trea Turner - SS||Jonathan Schoop - 2B|
|Bryce Harper - RF||Adam Jones - CF|
|Anthony Rendon - 3B||Manny Machado - SS|
|Matt Adams - DH||Chris Davis - 1B|
|Mark Reynolds - 1B||Mark Trumbo - RF|
|Juan Soto - LF||Pedro Alvarez - DH|
|Michael Taylor - CF||Danny Valencia - 3B|
|Wilmer Difo - 2B||Chance Sisco - C|
|Pedro Severino - C||Jace Peterson - LF|
|Jeremy Hellickson - RHP||Dylan Bundy - RHP|