The Baltimore Orioles are back in action starting tonight, as they begin a four-game series against the returning Miami Marlins.
This series will be played in three days, with a doubleheader on Wednesday. Both games of the doubleheader will be seven innings.
The O’s are coming off an impressive three-game sweep of the Tampa Bay Rays, while the Marlins are ending a battle with COVID-19.
This series will be the most intriguing of the season thus far. The Marlins will actually become the home team for two of the four games played at Camden Yards.
Also, the Marlins will introduce a lot of newly acquired players due to the outbreak in their organization, such as Logan Forsythe and former Oriole Richard Bleier.
The pitching matchups for this series are up in the air, but here is what is listed so far:
- Tuesday: John Means vs. Pablo López
- Wednesday: Asher Wojciechoski/ Alex Cobb (no order announced) vs. TBD
- Thursday: Wade LeBlanc vs. TBD
Keys to the Series 🔑:
1. Keep the offense hot:
Needless to say, the offense is what’s winning the Orioles games.
If the Orioles can keep that hot offense going against a weakened Marlins staff, they have a good shot of winning games in this series.
Someone to keep an eye on is Austin Hays, who is just 3-for-30 (.100) on the season. It would be spectacular if he can get his bat going in that leadoff spot.
2. Get past the 6th inning:
The Orioles starting rotation has yet to go past the 6th inning in any game this season.
The bullpen has been taxed tremendously so far this season, and if the Orioles want to get even stronger, they need the starters to lessen their pitch count and go deeper into games.
This would be the series to do this, as the Marlins lineup will be significantly weaker.
3. Work the pitch count and capitalize with runners in scoring position:
There’s no debate that the Orioles have had more chances to score with runners in scoring position, but they just couldn’t drive them in.
The Orioles had multiple opportunities with runners on and no outs and didn’t drive them in. Look for them to work the pitch count of Marlins arms to get on base consistently.
With a Miami club that’s dwindled down because of the virus, there could definitely be signs of rust, especially on their pitching staff. The Orioles need to be patient at the plate and not chase pitches outside the strike zone.
In Other News:
The Marlins have had no new positive tests for COVID-19 today, so that’s a positive for both teams playing. Don’t be surprised to see masks worn more frequently during this series. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
In a transaction made yesterday, the Orioles have added outfielder Ryan McKenna and pitchers Bruce Zimmermann and Kyle Bradish to their player pool and sent them to the alternate training site in Bowie.
Also, the O’s get to reunite with two former teammates in Richard Bleier and Jonathan Villar, so that should be exciting to see.
What do you expect to see in this series? Let us know in the comments below, and make sure to follow The Baltimore Battery on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram!