The Orioles are five games into their weeks-long gauntlet of tough opponents, and so far they’ve gone 2-3 against the two best clubs in baseball, with no losses by more than two runs.
These Orioles might be pretty good!
Tonight they have a chance to do to the Rays what almost nobody has been able to do: win a series against them. It’s happened just twice in Tampa Bay’s first 11 series. (The Orioles are almost as good in that regard, having lost only three of 11 series so far.) The Rays are looking to become the first major league team this season to reach 30 wins. No other club has more than 25.
Still, they’re not invincible, as the Orioles proved last night with their well-pitched, 4-2 victory. Can the O’s get an encore from Dean Kremer tonight? He’s coming off of a gutsy start in Atlanta, in which he held the powerful Braves lineup to just one run in six innings despite a lot of traffic on the basepaths. A 1-2 punch of quality starts against the Braves and Rays would be quite the feat for Kremer, who’s looking to turn around an ugly start to the season.
The Rays will use an opener tonight, lefty Jalen Beeks, but right-hander Yonny Chirinos is expected to pitch much of the game in bulk relief. That’s why Brandon Hyde has loaded his lineup with lefties as usual, including a rare start for the recently recalled Ryan O’Hearn.
CF Cedric Mullins
C Adley Rutschman
RF Anthony Santander
1B Ryan Mountcastle
2B Adam Frazier
LF Austin Hays
3B Gunnar Henderson
SS Jorge Mateo
DH Ryan O’Hearn
RHP Dean Kremer