The Orioles come back to Baltimore for a 10-game home stand, and are glad to do just that. In their last three road series, the O’s have had success in the opener, followed by at least two losses. Toronto comes to Charm City to take on the Birds who haven’t won a series since the last week in June.
In the season series, the Orioles are 3-6, going 1-2 in Baltimore and 2-4 in Toronto. The all-time series shows the Jays ahead of the Orioles 228-269. This season, the Orioles snapped their 16-game losing streak across the border. Tonight, they look to start their own winning streak at home.
Oriole third basemen Mark Reynolds is on pace for 36 home runs this season. That would be a franchise record at that position, passing Tony Batista’s 31 in 2002. Adam Jones is on a hot streak of his own, driving in seven runs in his last 12 games, hitting successfully in 11 of those 12.
The Jays will look to showcase their hottest prospect, third basemen Brett Lawrie, tonight against the Orioles. In 69 games in Triple-A Las Vegas, Lawrie is hitting .353 with 24 doubles, 61 RBI and 18 home runs. His bat will be a modest addition to an already stellar lineup that includes the league’s best hitter
The Orioles will send Tommy Hunter and Alfredo Simon to the mound this weekend, and will look to turn their season around during the month of August, just as they did last one year ago.
Game One: Friday, August 5th at 7:05PM Tommy Hunter (1-1, 3.31) vs. RHP LHP Brad Mills (0-1, 2.57)
The most feared hitter in baseball doesn’t fair well against the O’s Tommy Hunter. Jose Bautista is 0-8 against Hunter lifetime, and it may fair well for the O’s considering this is his first start in Baltimore. Hunter pitched on Tuesday against the Royals, where he gave up two hits and a run. In his last appearance against Toronto, he pitched 2.1 innings where he only gave up one hit, while striking out two.
On July 30 against the Texas Rangers, in his first start this season, Mills gave up six hits and two runs, striking out five. Last year, Mills was impressive against the Orioles, surrendering only two hits in seven innings. That would be his only win in six career starts.
Game Two: Saturday, August 6th at 7:05PM TBA vs. RHP Brandon Morrow (8-5, 4.58)
The Orioles seem to be in a tight spot when it comes to their starting rotation. Jake Arrieta has been scratched from Saturday’s start, citing continuous elbow issues as the culprit. Season-ending elbow surgery looks to be on his horizon. Chris Tillman is expected to be recalled from Triple-A Norfolk for the O’s.
Brandon Morrow is coming off an impressive start against Texas, in which he yielded six hits and two runs, but also struck out 11. In Morrow’s last start against the O’s (7/26), in only 3.1 innings of work, the right-hander gave up nine hits and seven runs, which included a trio of long balls by the O’s.
Game Three: Sunday, August 7th at 1:35PM RHP Alfredo Simon (3-4, 3.83) vs. LHP Ricky Romero (9-9, 2.98)
Simon takes the hill for the Orioles on Sunday, fresh off a win in Kansas City. In that start, Simon surrendered just four hits and a run in seven innings of work. While he only struck out three Royals, his command of the strikezone seemed to be in control, and he exuded confidence.
In 24 innings against the O’s this season, Romero has been hit or miss. In his last start against Baltimore, he proved that he has all the tools necessary to succeed. His nine strikeouts in 8.1 scoreless innings against Baltimore on July 27 turned to be an impressive outing.
This matchup is my “can’t miss matchup of the series.” Romero’s past few outings have been impressive, and I feel this could set up to be an exciting pitcher’s duel. If Simon settles down and finds his comfort zone, Sunday could be a fun one to watch.
By the Numbers
- Yunel Escobar is 15-40 (.375) with two home runs in nine games against the Orioles
- Since June 11, the Orioles are batting 2.12 with men in scoring position.
- In his last 12 games, Adam Jones has had seven multi-hit games and is batting .375 with four doubles and two home runs.