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Orioles-Red Sox series preview: Maybe the O’s will win this series

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The Orioles welcome the Red Sox for three games at Camden Yards this weekend.

MLB: Boston Red Sox at Baltimore Orioles Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

The Orioles may be catching the defending World Series champs at just the right time. Coming into this weekend at Camden Yards, the Red Sox have lost six of their last eight games and boast an ever-expanding injured list.

Among the wounded are pitchers Nathan Eovaldi, Brian Johnson, Tyler Thornburg and Hector Velazquez, first basemen Mitch Moreland and Steve Pearce and second basemen Dustin Pedroia and Tzu-Wei Lin.

June has been a rough month for a few of the Boston bats. Mookie Betts owns a .174/.333/.370 line this month, which is a bit better than than the .170/.220/.340 line from Rafael Devers. On the flip side, J.D. Martinez is hitting .344/.400/.594 since May ended and Andrew Benintendi owns a .333/.378/.571 this month.

These two teams have played seven games so far this season. The Red Sox have been victorious in four of those matchups with the most recent coming back at the beginning of May.

Game 1: Friday, 7:05 p.m. ET, MASN

TBD vs. LHP Eduardo Rodriguez (6-4, 5.00 ERA)

Andrew Cashner was set to start for the Orioles in this game until a pesky blister got in the way. Instead, it’s looking like it may be left up to the bullpen to patch things together. Another option would be to move Bundy up one day to pitch on normal rest. As of this writing, the decision on who will start for the O’s is still up in the air.

Boston’s Rodriguez has already pitched at Camden Yards once this season. On April 12, he allowed just two runs and struck out eight over 6.2 innings. It’s been a bit rockier for the southpaw lately. He owns a 5.72 ERA over his last five starts. Although it may be a result of some bad luck as he has a BABIP against of .361 in that time.

Game 2: Saturday, 4:05 p.m. ET, MASN

RHP Dylan Bundy (3-7, 4.50 ERA) vs. LHP Chris Sale (2-7, 3.52 ERA)

He’s pulling us back in! Bundy has looked like a competent pitcher ever since the beginning of May. Over his last seven starts, the righty has a .206 batting average against and a 3.02 ERA. How long will this trend last? Let’s just enjoy it while we can.

Like Bundy, Sale was dreadful in the first month of the season. But he’s been pretty good ever since then, and has been downright dominant in his last two outings, striking out 22 batters over 18 innings and no earned runs allowed. His season ERA has dropped from 6.30 at the end of April to 3.52 now.

Game 3: Sunday, 1:05 p.m. ET, MASN

LHP John Means (6-4, 2.60 ERA) vs. TBD

We are far enough into the season at this point, that we can start the chatter about award contenders. John Means is the one Oriole with a shot at taking home some silverware as the American League Rookie of the Year. Every start that goes by, I’m waiting for something terrible to happen, and it just hasn’t gone down like that. Instead, he keeps shutting down opposing offenses. Over his last three starts, Means has allowed three total runs, struck out 19 and tossed 17 innings.

With Eovaldi on the shelf, the Red Sox have been implementing an opener strategy recently. University of Maryland product Mike Shawaryn could be a candidate to get the start with the goal of throwing two to three innings. He was a starter throughout the minors, although he has been used only as a reliever so far with the big league club.

Poll

How many games will the Orioles win in this series against the Red Sox?

This poll is closed

  • 15%
    0 (The O’s get swept)
    (19 votes)
  • 61%
    1
    (75 votes)
  • 16%
    2
    (20 votes)
  • 6%
    3 (O’s sweep the Red Sox)
    (8 votes)
122 votes total Vote Now