Season-series edge on line as Orioles, Rays end set

Right now final 12 months, the Tampa Bay Rays have been headed for his or her third straight postseason and the Baltimore Orioles have been in the midst of a 19-game shedding streak.

Now, the Orioles are pushing to finish their five-year playoff drought, and there is also an opportunity that Baltimore may maintain Tampa Bay from playoff baseball.

You are reading: Season-series edge on line as Orioles, Rays end set

That’s the backdrop for the rubber recreation of a three-game sequence between the groups on Sunday in St. Petersburg, Fla., the golf equipment’ last regular-season assembly of the 12 months.

The Rays and Orioles have flipflopped holding the ultimate American League wild-card place the previous two nights, when Baltimore gained 10-3 on Friday and Tampa Bay posted an 8-2 victory on Saturday.

The groups are 9-9 within the season sequence. If Tampa Bay and Baltimore find yourself with the identical regular-season document, there could be no recreation No. 163. The pinnacle-to-head document within the season sequence could be the tiebreaker.

Regardless of the Saturday end result, it appears to be like as if the Orioles have momentum on their aspect. They’re 24-12 for the reason that begin of July and 8-3 in August.

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“We’re rather a lot higher staff this 12 months,” Baltimore supervisor Brandon Hyde stated. “We’re extra well-rounded, we’re pitching higher, we’re enjoying higher protection. We have been harmful offensively. … We’re extra gifted this 12 months.”

The Baltimore offense pounded out 19 hits on Friday, together with 5 from shortstop Jorge Mateo. Second baseman Rougned Odor went 4-for-5 within the sequence opener, then added two hits on Saturday.

The Orioles’ revival is basically attributable to its farm system. Baltimore has given main league debuts to 12 gamers this 12 months, a listing led by 24-year-old catcher Adley Rutschman.

The Rays hope the Saturday end result will get them again on monitor after they misplaced three straight and 4 of the earlier 5 video games. Within the victory, Tampa Bay scored extra runs than it had in any recreation for the reason that All-Star break.

Outfielder Jose Siri, who hadn’t hit effectively since being acquired on the commerce deadline, paced an 11-hit assault with three hits, whereas Randy Arozarena and Francisco Mejia every added two hits and an RBI.

“That occurred (Saturday),” Tampa Bay supervisor Kevin Money stated with amusing when requested whether or not it certified as a “breakout recreation” for his staff. “I will let you realize (Sunday).”

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Arozarena raised his batting common to .259 by going 2-for-3 with a double and two walks.

Nevertheless, the perfect information of all for the Rays got here earlier than the sport. Harold Ramirez, who fractured his proper thumb on July 17, took batting apply and labored out on the sector previous to the sport. Manuel Margot and Wander Franco, two different key cogs in Tampa Bay’s offense who’re on the injured listing, aren’t far behind Ramirez.

“With a number of new additions, we’re attempting to mix that new character,” Tampa Bay hitting coach Chad Mottola stated. “The accidents we have had are actual. It is nothing we will spend a number of power worrying about; we’re simply having to work with a brand new identification.”

Jordan Lyles (9-8, 4.35 ERA) will begin for Baltimore on Sunday, seeking to construct on a three-start successful streak. The fitting-hander restricted the Toronto Blue Jays to 2 runs in 5 2/3 innings on Monday.

In three begins in opposition to Tampa Bay this 12 months, Lyles is 1-2 with a 7.43 ERA. For his profession, he’s 1-2 with a 4.91 ERA in six video games (5 begins) vs. the Rays.

Tampa Bay will counter with right-hander Drew Rasmussen (6-4, 2.96 ERA). In his newest outing, Aug. 7 in opposition to the Detroit Tigers, Rasmussen was lifted after three scoreless innings because the Rays try to restrict his workload.

Rasmussen has no choices and a 4.15 ERA in two begins in opposition to the Orioles this 12 months, leaving his profession mark vs. Baltimore at 1-0 with a 2.65 ERA via 5 video games (three begins).

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