The Orioles are set to host four more games before a weeklong road trip, all four against the New York Yankees. The O’s are riding some momentum, as they just snapped the Oakland A’s 13-game win streak following a 8-1 victory on Sunday.
John Means pitched exceptionally well in his start Sunday, which also means he will not pitch against the powerful Yankee lineup. In game one, Matt Harvey will be on the mound, followed by Bruce Zimmermann, a pitcher to be determined later, and Jorge López.
The Yankees’ lineup has been heating up, but the Orioles certainly have a chance at cooling them down. Here is how they can do that, with the Baltimore Battery’s Keys to the Series!
1. Score runs before getting to the bullpen
Much like recent years, the Yankees have featured a stellar bullpen that, more often than not, saves the day after their rotation. With Gerrit Cole not set to pitch in this series, the O’s have four good chances to get to the starting pitchers. Deivi Garcia will start game one for the Yankees, his first on the year. The rest of the rotation this series holds an average ERA of 4.05. Their rotation is beatable, their bullpen, however, is much harder to beat. Having to try and come back against the Yankee bullpen that has been at the top of the league is nearly impossible.
2. Keep baseballs inside the park
The specialty of the New York Yankees is the home run, and there is no better place to hit them than Camden Yards. It will be very important for the starting pitchers to keep balls down in the zone and not let the Yankee hitters get their arms extended. That lineup features at least four hitters who can easily knock one out at 400 feet, and eliminating their long ball will eliminate a vast majority of their offense in general.
3. Give the bullpen a winnable game
As of late, the Oriole bullpen has been a shining spot. Of the four main bullpen arms, Paul Fry, Tanner Scott, Adam Plutko, and César Valdez, the highest individual ERA is 2.25. If the Orioles’ bullpen can be handed a game that is within reach for the offense, there is a high chance they can hold that score. If the starting rotation gets beat up early and exits after too much damage, this series will be a complete loss.
The O’s have made a roster move prior to the series opener, as they have selected the contract of RHP Jay Flaa from the Alternate Training Site at Double-A Bowie and optioned LHP Zac Lowther to the Alternate Training Site at Double-A Bowie.
Here are today’s starting lineups for game one:
New York Yankees (9-12):
1. DJ LeMahieu 1B
2. Giancarlo Stanton DH
3. Aaron Judge RF
4. Rougned Odor 2B
5. Gio Urshela 3B
6. Gleyber Torres SS
7. Aaron Hicks CF
8. Gary Sánchez C
9. Clint Frazier LF
SP. Deivi García RHP
Baltimore Orioles (9-12):
1. Cedric Mullins CF
2. Trey Mancini 1B
3. DJ Stewart RF
4. Maikel Franco 3B
5. Austin Hays LF
6. Pedro Severino C
7. Ryan Mountcastle DH
8. Freddy Galvis SS
9. Ramón Urías 2B
SP. Matt Harvey RHP
Tonight’s game is available on MASN and the flagship station of the O’s, 105.7 The Fan. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. EST.
What are your thoughts on this series? Let us know in the comments, and don’t forget to follow The Baltimore Battery on the web and on Facebook and Twitter!