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Orioles-Rays series preview: Some actual baseball amongst the trade rumors

Tampa Bay comes to town for a four game set. Trade rumors will surround both teams as the deadline approaches.

MLB: Game Two-New York Yankees at Baltimore Orioles Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Game 1- Thursday, 7:05

Hunter Wood (0-0, 2.93) vs. Alex Cobb (2-13, 6.17)

At the end of the season, which will be higher: Orioles traded in 2018 or total wins by Alex Cobb? Both are even at two right now, and I think the players traded has to be the favorite.

Cobb has not won a game since June 5, and he’s dropped his last six decisions. His ERA decreased to 6.17 his last time out when only one of the four runs allowed was earned. He’s faced Tampa Bay twice this year, and lost both times. The last matchup took place May 12. Cobb allowed four runs, three were earned, and the Orioles eventually lost 10-3.

The Rays continue to trot out relievers to start games. Hunter Wood will get the nod in his third start of the season. His last time out, he allowed one run in two innings against New York. Wood should only face the Orioles lineup one time through.

Game 2- Friday, 7:05

Chris Archer (3-4, 4.61) vs. Andrew Cashner (2-9, 4.40)

The good news? If you liked the over/under game with Cobb, you can play it with Cashner too. Cashner holds only a pair of wins this year, but his 4.40 ERA is much more respectable than Cobb’s. His last win came May 21, but he’s received only four decisions since then. The righty has thrown seven full innings just once this year, and that came all the way back in April. That may fly in Tampa Bay when they’re sending relievers out to the mound, but it’s not ideal in Baltimore.

Cashner has pitched to moderate success over the last month. He only allowed one run in 5.2 innings against Toronto his last time out, and has surrendered more than three earned runs only once since the start of June. He’s capable of giving the Orioles a chance to win, they just have to score some runs.

The Birds will likely face Chris Archer, unless he’s traded away. The righty has been the subject of trade rumors over the last week, and has been linked to several teams. His numbers are down this year, which may allow a team to pick up an above average pitcher below market value.

Game 3- Saturday, 7:05

TBD vs. Kevin Gausman (4-8, 4.54)

Kevin Gausman has also been involved in trade rumors, but it’s unknown if Baltimore would part with the former top prospect. It’s been a standard season for Gausman, who has shown potential but failed to put it all together. His 4.54 ERA is actually down a tick from last year when he won 11 games. Gausman has only had two years with a sub-4 ERA, and the 11 wins were a career high.

Gausman has been linked in trade rumors with fellow starter Dylan Bundy and second baseman Jonathan Schoop. If the Orioles want to get serious about rebuilding, they may have to move a player or two that has more than one year of team control. Whether the club would pull the trigger remains to be seen, but there’s a small chance this could be Gausman’s last start as an Oriole.

Game 4- Sunday, 1:05

TBD vs. Yefry Ramirez (1-3, 3.49)

The remainder of Baltimore’s season is all about guys like Yefry Ramirez. The 24-year-old rookie has made five starts for the Orioles, and he held his own in a majority of them. He picked up his first major league win his last time out against Boston. He allowed three runs on four hits in five innings, and struck out six batters. The rookie tossed five scoreless innings against Texas in the start prior to that.

Ramirez needs to work on being efficient with his pitches. He’s thrown at least 90 pitches in his last three starts, and has not made it past the fifth inning in any of those outings. He’ll have an opportunity to take a step forward in the finale of the four game series.

Poll

How many games will the Orioles win in this series against Tampa Bay?

This poll is closed

  • 6%
    4 (The Orioles sweep)
    (11 votes)
  • 8%
    3
    (14 votes)
  • 32%
    2
    (56 votes)
  • 40%
    1
    (70 votes)
  • 12%
    0 (The Orioles get swept)
    (21 votes)
172 votes total Vote Now