ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - The Orioles have a new leadoff hitter tonight.
Nate McLouth will bat first against the Tampa Bay Rays, with Nick Markakis moving down to third. Manny Machado will bat second again, as he did on opening day.
Nolan Reimold will serve as the designated hitter.
For the Orioles
Nate McLouth LF
Manny Machado 3B
Nick Markakis RF
Adam Jones CF
Chris Davis 1B
Matt Wieters C
J.J. Hardy SS
Nolan Reimold DH
Brian Roberts 2B
Wei-Yin Chen LHP
Since allowing five earned runs in his first inning against the Rays on June 1, 2012, Chen has surrendered only six over his last 32 1/3 innings for a 1.67 ERA. That includes one earned run over his last 18 1/3 innings at Tropicana Field for a 0.49 ERA.
Chen and Jeremy Hellickson were the only American League pitchers to make at least four starts through May 19, 2012 without recording a loss. Chen made seven and went 4-0. Hellickson made eight starts and went 4-0. Chen lost his first decision on May 20 in Washington, D.C., and Hellickson suffered his first loss the next day against the Toronto Blue Jays.
Wieters is batting .371 with three doubles, five homers, 14 RBIs and a .937 OPS in 31 career games at Tropicana Field. In 57 career games against the Rays, Wieters is batting .343/.401/.562 with 11 doubles, 11 homers and 38 RBIs.
Since Aug. 22, 2011, the Orioles are tied with the Detroit Tigers for the third-most wins in baseball with 116. Only the Washington Nationals (118) and Texas Rangers (117) have more. The New York Yankees have 115 wins.
The Minnesota Twins will start Liam Hendriks, Vance Worley and Cole DeVries in the three-game series at Camden Yards that begins Friday afternoon. The Orioles are sending out Jake Arrieta, Chris Tillman and Jason Hammel. Tillman will be activated from the disabled list, necessitating a corresponding roster move.
For the Rays: