After taking two of three from the visiting Boston Red Sox over the weekend, the Orioles will look to continue their excellent run of form against the Tampa Bay Rays during the second leg of the home stand tonight at Camden Yards.
The Orioles (12-5) couldn’t have dreamed of a better overall start to the 2017 season. Not only do they own an MLB-Best 12-5 record, they’ve also recorded an impressive 6-2 record at home, a 6-3 record away from OPACY, and a stellar 10-4 mark versus the vicious AL East.
Not bad, eh? These Birds are flying at the moment.
The Rays (10-10) have gotten off to a pretty solid start this season backed by the AL’s highest-scoring offense (93 runs scored) and a sparkling 9-4 record at home, but their record stands at a lowly 1-6 away from The Trop. They’ll also be looking to recover from losing two of three at home versus Houston over the weekend, which came right after sweeping Detroit in the previous series.
Will the O’s keep it rolling, or will the visitors pull off a minor upset in the first Orioles-Rays meeting of 2017?
Jimenez was magnificent his last time out versus Cincinnati, having allowed just two hits over 7 2/3 shutout innings en route to notching a well-deserved first win of 2017. Jimenez’s pure gem of an outing resulted in his ERA plummeting from 10.38 to 5.51. Here’s to another sparking outling from the O’s veteran.
While he wasn’t at his best versus Detroit, Archer was almost unhittable over his first three starts of the campaign and seems to have rediscovered the form that made him one of the AL’s best from 2013-2015. Archer has allowed just nine runs over his first 25 1/3 innings while racking up 27 K’s in the process. More impressively, just a season after giving up 30 long balls, Archer has allowed zero dingers through his first four starts of April.
Miley is coming off one of the finest performances of his career after allowing just a single run on two hits over eight innings to go along with tying a career high with 11 strikeouts versus the Reds last Thursday, and has been nothing short of stellar for the Orioles this season. He’s allowed just four runs on eight hits over his first 19 innings of work, and owns the AL’s sixth-best WHIP (0.84) and fifth-best K/9 (11.37).
Ramirez looked sharp in his first start of the season against the Tigers last Thursday, having allowed just one run on two hits over five innings along with zero walks and five strikeouts en route to his second win of the season. He’s also allowed just nine hits over his first 14 2/3 innings of the season (0.68 WHIP).
Bundy has become one of baseball’s breakout star candidates after mowing down everyone through his first four starts of the campaign. He’s allowed one run or fewer in three of his four outings and goes into his fifth start of the season versus Tampa on a 13-inning scoreless streak after shutting out the Jays and ‘Sox over six and seven innings, respectively.
Cobb will be looking to snap out of a rough three-game patch in which he’s posted an 0-2 record and a 5.89 ERA. He’s also given up eight runs on a woeful twenty hits allowed over his last two starts (11 innings).
– Manny Machado will kick off the three-game set on a five-game hit streak, and will be looking forward to Monday’s contest as he owns a stellar .313 average with one homer and three RBI against Chris Archer.
–Chris Davis (.273, 3 HR, 7 RBI) J.J. Hardy (.348, 0 HR, 3 RBI) and Jonathan Schoop (.313, 2 HR, 2 RBI) have also hit Archer hard in the past. Maybe this will be the game the O’s break out of their slump at the plate.
– Davis has also posted excellent career numbers against Ramirez, going 6-for-19 (.316) at the plate with two homers and six RBI. Schoop, however, cannot say the same as he’s gone just 2-for-15 (.133) with zero homers and zero RBI against Ramirez.
– While Cobb may be struggling for form at the moment, he’s owned the Orioles big guns in the past. Machado (.067, 1 HR, 2 RBI) has a single home run to show over his 15 at-bats versus Cobb, while Schoop (.111, 0 HR, 0 RBI) and Davis (.125, 0 HR, 0 RBI) are probably not looking forward to facing him, either.
– Orioles pitchers beware: Steven Souza is on absolute fire. He leads the club in batting average (.347), OBP (.424), SLG (.613), RBI (17) and is tied for the team lead in home runs (4). Corey Dickerson (.314, 7 2B, 4 HR, 8 RBI) is also crushing the ball in the early stages. Long story short? These guys know how to mash.
That’s it for now, Orioles fans! Enjoy the series!