O's game blog: Looking to bounce back against Tampa Bay

With a 10-game winning streak now over, the Orioles look to start a new one this afternoon in the second game of their series with the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. The Rays scored four runs in the sixth Friday night to take a 5-2 lead. Ramón Urías hit a two-run homer, his second of the game, to bring Baltimore within 5-4 in the eighth, but the Birds lost by that score.

For the Orioles (45-45), it was their first loss in nearly two weeks, going back to July 2 at Minnesota. During their win streak they won three times on the road and seven times at home. They scored 52 runs and allowed 30 with a team ERA of 2.93 during the streak. The rotation ERA was 3.19 and the bullpen posted a 2.58 ERA.

The Orioles fell four wins short of a team record 14 straight wins, achieved from Aug. 12-27, 1973.

Even in losing the series opener at the Trop, the O’s have been winners in 15 of 21 and 21 of their last 31 games. They are 31-21 since May 19. The Orioles are 24-15 since June 1 and 38-31 since May 1.

They begin play today 2 ½ games out of the sixth and final American League playoff spot, which is co-held by Toronto and Boston at 48-43. That duo leads Cleveland by two games, with the O’s and Chicago White Sox both next, each at 45-45.

O’s pitching allowed five earned runs last night. But over the past 26 games, O’s pitchers have allowed two runs or fewer 15 times, going 14-1 in those games. O’s starting pitchers have allowed no more than one earned run in 17 of the last 26 games with an ERA of 2.62.

With last night's loss, the Orioles are at even .500 on the year at 26-26 in games decided by two runs or fewer, going 15-16 in one-run games and 11-10 in games decided by two runs.

The Orioles fell to 15-20 in AL East games last night. They are 5-4-1 on the year in series against AL East teams and have won two of three series versus Tampa Bay, both at home. They are 4-6 against the Rays on the season after going 1-18 in 2021. The Orioles have lost all four games in St. Pete this season and have lost 10 in a row at the Trop. This season, they are 11-9 in their past 20 AL East games.

Right-hander Dean Kremer (3-1, 2.15 ERA) will make his eighth start today. The Orioles are 5-2 in his first seven. Kremer pitched scoreless ball over five innings with seven strikeouts last Saturday in a 1-0 home win over the Los Angeles Angels.

It was his latest scoreless start, and he has not allowed a run in four of his past five outings. His ERA is 1.59 in that span, as he's allowed five earned runs and surrendered one homer over 28 1/3 innings. Opponents have hit .257 with an OPS of .654 against Kremer during this stretch.

On June 17, Kremer pitched six scoreless innings, allowing five hits on 82 pitches against Tampa Bay.

Rays lefty Ryan Yarbrough (0-4, 5.82 ERA) will make his seventh start of 2022. In his last two – against the White Sox and Blue Jays – he's pitched to a 12.86 ERA, allowing 10 runs and 16 hits over seven innings. Opponents hit .444 with a 1.306 OPS in those games. The Rays are 1-5 in his starts for the year.

He got a no-decision on May 20 versus the Orioles, allowing two runs (one earned) on six hits over four innings and 56 pitches. Lefty batters have hit .217 with a .705 OPS against him, and right-handers have batted .316/.898.

The Rays (50-40) have won five straight games, one shy of tying May 2-7 (6) for their longest winning streak of the season. They have overcome multi-run deficits in back-to-back games, and in three of their last four. The Rays are 10 games over .500, their most since the end of play on June 12 (35-25) and one shy of tying their high-water mark of the season. At 50-40, they have the third-best record in the AL behind the Yankees (62-28) and Astros (58-31).

Tampa Bay has a 3.35 ERA this season, the fourth-best in the major leagues behind the Dodgers (2.98), Astros (3.00) and Yankees (3.11). They are 37-12 when yielding three runs or fewer, and 13-28 when allowing four or more. The Rays have a 3.10 ERA since May 11, second in the majors (Houston, 3.08).

Best team ERA in MLB since June 17:

2.57 - Seattle
2.80 - Orioles
2.89 - Houston
3.00 - Los Angeles Dodgers
3.21 - New York Mets


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