O's game blog: Dean Kremer faces Houston in series Game 2

The score is 8-4. Not from last night’s game, but from four games this year played between the Orioles and the 99-win Astros, who have the best record in the American League. Yep, four games and a total of 12 runs scored by the teams.

In a Houston series that began Aug. 26, the Orioles won by 2-0 and 3-1 before losing 3-1. They won the series opener in Baltimore last night 2-0.

In those four games, O’s pitching has allowed just four runs versus the Astros. O’s starting pitchers have recorded an ERA of 0.59, allowing nine hits and two runs over 30 1/3 innings. That is against a Houston team that began this series third in the AL averaging 4.58 runs per game and third in the league in slugging and team OPS.

Right-hander Kyle Bradish took a perfect game to the sixth inning last night as he retired the first 17 batters he faced before No. 9 hitter Mauricio Dubon singled to left. Bradish came within an out of pitching a second straight complete game for the Orioles after Jordan Lyles did so Wednesday against the Tigers. He allowed two hits over 8 2/3 with no walks and 10 strikeouts. He threw 100 pitches, 70 for strikes, and improved to 4-7 with a 4.65 ERA.

In two starts this season versus Houston, Bradish has thrown 16 2/3 scoreless, allowing just four hits. Houston batters have gone 4-for-53 (.075) against him. In his last six starts, Bradish has an ERA of 1.64 and has allowed just one homer and an OPS of .420 over 38 1/3 innings. He has thrown seven innings or more in four of the six starts, and the Orioles are 4-2 in those games.

In 11 starts since returning from the injured list in late July, he is 3-3 with a 2.67 ERA. The Orioles are 8-3 in those games.

In the last two games against the Tigers and Astros, O’s pitchers have allowed one run and five hits over 18 innings with no walks and 17 strikeouts. O’s pitchers have not walked a single batter in three straight games, issuing their last walk on Monday against Detroit.

Right-hander Dean Kremer (7-5, 3.33 ERA) gets the start tonight for the Orioles. The team is 13-6 in his starts this season, winning six of the last seven. In those seven games, Kremer is 3-1 with a 2.79 ERA and .664 OPS against.

Righty José Urquidy (13-7, 3.96 ERA) will make his 28th start for Houston. On Aug. 27 at Minute Maid Park, the Orioles scored three runs off him over five innings. He gave up a two-run homer to Anthony Santander and a solo shot to Austin Hays. Urquidy's last two starts were rough, as he allowed 12 earned runs and 17 hits over 11 innings against the Angels and Athletics.   

Tides tonight: The Triple-A Norfolk Tides have produced a strong finish to their season. They are 72-72 with six games left. Durham beat Norfolk last night 7-6, but the Tides are still 14-6 this month and have won 18 of their past 25 games.

Since joining the Tides, infielder Connor Norby is 7-for-14 in three games with two homers and four RBIs. Norby and Jordan Westburg each have 27 homers to tie for the O’s organization lead. Westburg hit a two-run shot in the fifth inning last night and has hit 18 homers with Norfolk after hitting nine at Double-A Bowie. For the year, Westburg is batting .267/.357/.507 with an .864 OPS, 38 doubles, three triples, 27 homers and 102 RBIs.

O’s farm RBI leaders:
102 – Jordan Westburg
84 – Joey Ortiz
78 – Kyle Stowers
76 – Gunnar Henderson
70 – Connor Norby 

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