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Friday night Orioles game thread: vs Rockies, 8:40

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Fresh off a sweep at home, Baltimore looks for the magic formula to keep the ball in the yard at homer-happy Coors Field.

MLB: San Diego Padres at Colorado Rockies Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The O’s head west to face the Rockies coming off a 1-9 skid over their last ten games. At 15-35, they’re now a season-worst 17.5 games back of first in the AL East. If you’ve been living under a rock, well, I congratulate you. This was a great week to sit out.

The idea of the historically homer-prone O’s trying to stop the barrage at Coors Field, of all places, must be someone’s sick idea of a joke. But hey, maybe this is the day they make a heroic stand. If so, we’ll all be singing of the glory of John Means (5-4, 2.68) (who’s apparently really excited for interleague play at-bats). It’s admittedly a lot to ask of the lefty. But Means has been the O’s best pitcher this season, so if anyone can do it…

As you’d expect, none of the Rockies’ hitters have ever faced Means. What we do know is that the lineup splits against lefties and righties are about even, .250/.306/.458 versus .252/.316/.431.

The Rockies did no favors to me and my Friday afternoon by hiding their lineup until a couple of hours before the game, so I’ll update this as soon as I can sit down for the recap. [Updated: the Orioles catch a small break, with Charlie Blackmon out with a calf injury. Still, Colorado hitters are no slouches, especially out of the 2-3-4-5 slots: Trevor Story, the Rockies’ second hottest hitter; Nolan Arenado, who has terrorized lefties to the tune of a 1.257 OPS; first baseman Daniel Murphy, getting the start at cleanup; and centerfielder Ian Desmond is hitting fifth.]

The Rockies’ late-addition starter is the righty Jeff Hoffman, promoted from AAA for today’s start to replace the injured Tyler Anderson. Hoffman, a top prospect gone a little to seed, has just one major league start this year, which left him with the following line: 0-1, 5.0 IP, 7.57 ERA, 6 SO. Hoffman’s been quite good in AAA, though (1.96 ERA and 27-to-5 K/BB ratio in 18 1/3 innings). The only Oriole who’s faced Hoffman is Villar, 0-for-2 off him with one intentional BB in three plate appearances.

Game time is an unconventional 8:40 p.m. Join me in the gamethread if you’re planning to make this a late one!

Orioles lineup [edited]

Jonathan Villar SS

Stevie Wilkerson RF

Trey Mancini 1B

Dwight Smith Jr. LF

Rio Ruiz 3B

Keon Broxton CF

Hanser Alberto 2B

Pedro Severino C

John Means LHP

Rockies lineup [edited]

Raimel Tapia LF

Trevor Story SS

Nolan Arenado 3B

Daniel Murphy 1B

Ian Desmond CF

David Dahl RF

Brendan Rodgers 2B

Tony Wolters C

Jeff Hoffman RHP