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Sunday afternoon Orioles game thread: @ Rays, 1:40 pm

The Orioles are looking for a series win in their biggest series of the year so far.

Baltimore Orioles v Minnesota Twins
Tyler Wells will try to right his ship today
Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images

What a series this has been! The two best teams in the American League, going head-to-head for first place in the AL East. It has lived up to its billing so far with three close contests. The Orioles have the 2-1 edge with one game to go.

With a loss, the Orioles leave Florida the way they came in, virtually tied for first but ahead in percentage points. With a win, they’ll leave with a two-game lead in the division and a 6-3 season record against the Rays with just four games to go. That could be important if tiebreakers enter the picture at the end of the season.

Today’s starter for the Orioles, Tyler Wells, is coming off his worst start of the season in which he lasted just two innings against the Dodgers. He gave up six runs in the abbreviated start. Since the start of June, Wells has been pretty much an automatic lock to pitch around six innings with two runs allowed. He has done that in six of his last eight starts. I wouldn’t say no to that today.

Rookie righty Taj Bradley starts for the Rays. He has an unsightly 5.29 ERA but a much lower FIP of 3.95. He pitched well against the Orioles in June, with six innings, just one run allowed, and eight strikeouts. But that type of start has been the outlier for him this season. Hopefully, the Orioles can treat him like a 5.29 ERA pitcher today.

Orioles lineup

  1. Gunnar Henderson (L) SS
  2. Adley Rutschman (S) C
  3. Anthony Santander (S) DH
  4. Ryan O’Hearn (L) 1B
  5. Austin Hays (R) LF
  6. Aaron Hicks (S) CF
  7. Ramon Urias (R) 3B
  8. Colton Cowser (L) RF
  9. Adam Frazier (L) 2B

Rays lineup

  1. Yandy Diaz (R) 1B
  2. Wander Franco (S) SS
  3. Harold Ramirez (R) DH
  4. Randy Arozarena (R) LF
  5. Isaac Paredes (R) 3B
  6. Brandon Lowe (L) 2B
  7. Jose Siri (R) CF
  8. Manuel Margot (R) RF
  9. Christian Bethancourt (R) C

Let’s go O’s!