For the second time in two weeks, the Orioles are matched up against the powerhouse Houston Astros. In their last meeting, the Astros outscored the Orioles 26-3 in three games at Camden Yards. This time around, the Orioles will have a shot at Zack Greinke at Minute Maid Park in Houston.
The Orioles will start Thomas Eshelman in game one against Greinke, a TBA starter for game two, and Matt Harvey for game three. As we saw just a week ago, the Astros are a dynamite team that can strike at any point with anyone on the mound.
The Orioles will have another tough series here in the middle of a schedule that is full of them. The Astros have won 12 of their last 14 games, while the Orioles have won two games out of their last 14.
For the Orioles to have some success in Houston, they must follow these steps!
Keys to the Series 🔑
1. Provide some offense
The last series against the Astros was maybe the worst of the season so far. Those three games could only accumulate 14 hits and three runs. However, the Astros’ arms are hittable. Putting up early runs can go a long way by putting some actual pressure on these pitchers. Also, Ryan Mountcastle can’t win games by himself, so Austin Hays needs to continue to stay hot, while another Cedric Mullins tear would be useful.
2. Starters need to put up a fight
As of late, the starting pitching has not been good. Thomas Eshelman is coming off his last start against the Astros, when he allowed six runs in only four innings. If the starters come out and pitch like that, this bullpen that is working on its 18th day in a row without a day off will crumble. These three games can fall on the shoulders of the starting pitching if the offense isn’t able to deliver, so keeping the ball in the yard and eliminating the walks will be essential.
3. Hope the bullpen can deliver
In the last couple of games, the Orioles bullpen has let up a whole bunch of runs. A few of them, however, have shined bright amidst the rough week. Travis Lakins Sr. delivered a strong four innings against the Blue Jays, while Tyler Wells and Dillon Tate both pitched very well in that series. If the starting pitching breaks down, look to these arms to try and save the day. Also, Alex Wells is another new arm you can look forward to, as he will follow up his scoreless two-inning debut.
Game one of this series is Monday at 8:05 p.m. ET. You can catch each game on MASN or on the Orioles’ flagship radio station, 105.7 The Fan!
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