clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Sunday afternoon Orioles game thread: vs. Detroit, 1:35

It’s Rodriguez v. Rodriguez as the Birds try for a sweep.

Baltimore Orioles v Chicago White Sox Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

Winners of nine of their last 11 games, the Orioles are rolling right now. The offense is firing on all cylinders: the Orioles’ 116 WRC+ is fourth best of all teams. The pitching, once a liability, has made a sharp turnaround with a shiny 1.20 ERA in the last seven days. Before last week, the starters had pitched to an unsightly 5.79 ERA; after 29 2/3 scoreless innings this week, it’s 3.21, behind only AL leaders Tampa Bay, Texas and New York.

Can Grayson Rodriguez grab the baton from his rotation teammates and keep up this streak of dominance? This will be his fourth major league start. In each of the past three, he’s had one bad inning, usually early, then calmed down. In his last outing, a week ago in Chicago, he allowed four runs in the first inning on two home runs, then tossed four scoreless. Establishing his changeup early will be important, both for keeping his pitch count down and minimizing homers (his 1.3 HR9 is somewhat elevated).

Baltimore’s chances today could be helped significantly with a subpar outing by former Orioles farmhand Eduardo Rodriguez. Now in his eighth season and second one with Detroit, Rodriguez has allowed eight runs in 24 innings so far this season. Rodriguez is 13-5 with a 2.94 ERA and 1.141 WHIP in 23 lifetime starts against the Orioles. Against Rodriguez, Austin Hays is 4-for-7 with two doubles. James McCann, DH’ing today after his first Orioles homer last night, is 4-for-16 with a double and two homers.

Jorge Mateo is back in the lineup after leaving Wednesday’s game early with hip discomfort. With a .362 average and .418 OBP to start the season, Mateo has unexpectedly become one of the Orioles’ biggest contributors at the plate. Let’s hope he’s pain-free, mobile, and smacking the ball all over the field today.

Outfielder Ryan McKenna gets a rare start, with a slumping Anthony Santander getting a day off. It’s also a rare start at second base for Ramón Urías, author of Friday night’s biggest hit, a bases-clearing double, and also its most random ejection.

Orioles lineup

Austin Hays LF
Adley Rutschman C
Ryan Mountcastle 1B
Ramón Urías 2B
James McCann DH
Jorge Mateo SS
Gunnar Henderson 3B
Ryan McKenna RF
Cedric Mullins CF

Grayson Rodriguez RHP

Tigers lineup

Akil Baddoo LF
Riley Greene CF
Javier Báez SS
Kerry Carpenter DH
Zach McKinstry 3B
Spencer Torkelson 1B
Matt Vierling RF
Jake Rogers C
Jonathan Schoop 2B

Eduardo Rodriguez LHP