O’s game blog: Luis Ortiz makes his first major league start

As the Orioles host the Chicago White Sox tonight to start a three-game series, O’s right-hander Luis Ortiz will make his second big league appearance and his first as a starter.

Ortiz was acquired from Milwaukee with Jonathan Villar and infielder Jean Carmona on July 31 when the Orioles traded Jonathan Schoop to the Brewers.

On the farm this year, between Double-A Biloxi and Triple-A Norfolk, the 22-year-old Ortiz went 5-5 with a 3.70 ERA. Over 99 2/3 innings, he allowed 97 hits and 11 homers with 26 walks, 86 strikeouts and a .251 batting average against.

camden-yards-night-sidebar.jpgDrafted in round one (No. 30 overall) by Texas in 2014, Ortiz was twice in top prospects national top 100 lists. At the end of the 2015 season, he was No. 64 by Baseball America, No. 68 by Baseball Prospectus and No. 73 by MLB.com. After the 2016 season he was No. 62 by MLB.com, No. 68 by Baseball Prospectus and No. 79 by Baseball America.

Ortiz had a rough major league debut a week ago at Tropicana Field against Tampa Bay. He threw just 11 strikes among 24 pitches in 2/3 of an inning. He gave up two walks, three hits and three runs.

Right-hander James Shields (6-16, 4.58 ERA) makes his 32nd appearance of the season for Chicago. He allowed six runs in 4 1/3 innings in his last start versus the Los Angeles Angels. In 10 games since the All-Star break, he is 2-6 with a 4.90 ERA.

Shields is 0-8 with a 5.88 ERA and .270 opponent average over his last 12 road appearances (11 starts). He earned his last road win on opening day on March 29 at Kansas City.

Shields has gone 11-8 with a 3.85 ERA, 139 strikeouts and a .254 opponents average over 28 career starts against the Orioles. He won his last start at Oriole Park on April 27, 2014, allowing two earned runs over seven innings.

Chicago is 57-89 and snapped a seven-game losing streak in its last game Wednesday, beating Kansas City in 12 innings. The Sox have scored four runs or less for nine straight games. Chicago is 8-4 on the road versus the American League East in 2018.

Chicago has struck out 1,412 times in 2018, the most in the major leagues and the most in a single season in franchise history. Yoán Moncada is tied for the major league lead with 196. The Orioles have the 10th-most strikeouts on offense in the majors, with 1,267. On the pitching side, the White Sox have recorded 1,381 quality starts since the start of the 2003 season, tied with the New York Mets for the highest total in the major leagues, and 52 more than Oakland (1,329), the next-closest AL team.

Former O’s farmhand Nicky Delmonico is starting for the White Sox tonight, batting eighth in left field. He was on the disabled list earlier this year when the Orioles played in Chicago. Delmonico was Baltimore’s sixth-round pick in 2011 and was signed then to an overslot bonus of $1.525 million. I interviewed him for this story in Chicago in May about his time with the Orioles.

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