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Tuesday night Orioles game thread: at Astros, 8:10pm ET

The Orioles look to take Game 2 and the series with Houston after their dramatic, come-from-behind win in Game 1.

MLB: Baltimore Orioles at Houston Astros Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

After Sunday’s extra-inning dramatics and Monday’s 9th inning fireworks, it’s hard to imagine what the Orioles might have in store for us tonight. Maybe it’ll be a nice, calm win that was never in doubt and didn’t require multiple comebacks. Then again, that’s not really the Orioles style.

No matter how the O’s get it done against the Astros, a win would continue the immaculate vibes of euphoria rippling over Birdland the last three days. The win would also secure a road series victory against a team many still view as the AL’s most complete team top-to-bottom. More importantly, the victory would move the O’s AL East magic number to at most eight, depending on the outcome of Tampa’s game.

Baltimore will turn to crafty veteran Kyle Gibson to secure its third straight win over the defending champions. Unlike many AL starters over recent seasons, Minute Maid Park has always been a welcoming venue for Gibson. In seven career starts in Houston, Gibby is sporting a 2.22 ERA while holding Astros hitters to a .207 average and .560 OPS. That ERA is Gibson’s lowest of any stadium where he’s made at least five starts. The last time the 12-year veteran pitched in The Juice Box was a one-inning relief appearance in the Phillies’ Game 3 win in the 2022 World Series.

While the O’s turn to their most experience pitcher Tuesday night, the Astros will counter with 24-year-old Hunter Brown. The rookie has had plenty of ups and downs throughout his first full season in the big leagues—but of late it’s been more down than up. In his last eight appearances across August and September, Brown has a 6.17 ERA and opposing hitters are putting up a .858 OPS against him. The former 5th-round pick from Detroit is coming off his best start in a while, having thrown five shutout innings six days ago against the A’s.

However, the O’s will be hoping for a repeat of their last time facing Brown, when they tossed him around to the tune of eight hits and five runs in six innings. The star of that game was catcher Adley Rutschman, who led off the bottom of the 1st with a solo HR and later picked up an RBI single in the bottom of the 6th. Adley is getting an day off tonight, though, so look for 1B Ryan O’Hearn to continue his hot play against Houston. After going 5-5 last night against the ‘Stros, O’Hearn is hitting .373 in September and has a hit in 11 of his 14 starts.

Orioles Lineup

  1. Gunnar Henderson (L) SS
  2. Anthony Santander (S) RF
  3. Ryan O’Hearn (L) 1B
  4. Austin Hays (R) LF
  5. Cedric Mullins (L) CF
  6. Heston Kjerstad (L) DH
  7. Adam Frazier (L) 2B
  8. James McCann (R) C
  9. Jorge Mateo (R) SS

Starting pitcher: Kyle Gibson (14-9, 4.98 ERA, 144 Ks, 1.32 WHIP)

Astros Lineup

  1. Jose Altuve (R) 2B
  2. Alex Bregman (R) 3B
  3. Yordan Alvarez (L) DH
  4. Kyle Tucker (L) RF
  5. Jose Abreu (R) 1B
  6. Chas McCormick (R) LF
  7. Yainer Diaz (R) C
  8. Mauricio Dubón (R) CF
  9. Jeremy Peña (R) SS

Starting pitcher: Hunter Brown (11-11, 4.61 ERA, 169 Ks, 1.34 WHIP)