Tuesday preview: Tampa at Orioles

Game Preview
Tampa (73-71) at Orioles (58-85)

The Tampa Bay Rays seemed due, maybe overdue, for an offensive breakout. After starting a road trip 0-7 by scoring eight total runs, the Rays matched that in one night, taking the first game of a series Monday at Camden Yards.

Tonight, the O’s host Tampa in game two of this series and seven-game homestand.

Jason Berken (4-11, 6.02) pitches for the Orioles vs. Jeff Niemann (12-5, 3.57).

With Monday’s 8-4 win, Tampa snapped an 11-game losing streak, the longest in the Majors this year. Tampa had scored just 23 runs with a team average of .183 during the streak.

By the 5th inning Monday, the Rays had eight runs on 11 hits. Reid Brignac went 4 for 4 with his first Major League homer, two doubles and three RBI. B.J. Upton added a solo homer as the 8th and 9th spots in the Rays order drove in four runs in the win.

It was Tampa’s first win since September 2nd and the club improved to 2-12 this month.

These teams will meet seven more times in the season’s final 19 games. Tampa leads the season series 6-5 and the clubs have split six games in Baltimore.

The Orioles are 4-4 over the last eight games and 10-13 over the last 23.

Tampa scored once in the top of the first last night. O’s pitching has now given up at least one first-inning run in six straight games and in eight of the past nine contests.

With two hits last night, Jeff Fiorentino is batting .364 (12 for 33) over his last 13 Major League games. That dates back to the 2006 season.

Rookie pitchers have started 86 of the Orioles 143 games with another rookie set to take the mound tonight. The Birds are 33-53 in those games.

O’s hitters recent performance:
Andino: Is 3 for 6 his last three games
Aubrey: Has three hits his last 14 at bats
Fiorentino: Is 3 for 7, rbi, his last two games
Izturis: Has five hits his last 37 at bats
Markakis: Since All-Star break is batting .317-8-36
Moeller: Is 8 for 15 with 6 RBI his last five games
Mora: His last 13 games is batting .348-3-9
Pie: His last 24 games is batting .324-6-14
Reimold: Over 11 games is hitting .366-3-6
Roberts: Has 10 RBI over last seven games
Scott: Four hits his last 28 at bats
Turner: Is 2 for 6 since joining O’s
Wieters: Has just one RBI his last 13 games
Wigginton: Over nine games is batting .300

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