O's game blog: The homestand begins against the Yankees

Following a 2-4 road trip during which they won two of three in St. Louis and were swept at Detroit, the Orioles are back at Oriole Park tonight to start a week-long homestand. They host the New York Yankees for four games and then the Tampa Bay Rays will be in town for three over the weekend.

This starts a difficult stretch of two weeks of games within the American League East, with seven this week versus the Yankees and Rays and eight next week at New York and Boston.

The Orioles have played two home AL East series and won them both, over the Yankees and Red Sox. In fact, they are the only team to take a series from New York this year. The O’s have gone 4-8 within the division – they are 4-2 at home and 0-6 on the road.

Right-hander Kyle Bradish (1-1, 4.24 ERA) will make his fourth big league start tonight in the series opener. He is coming off a strong outing at St. Louis on Tuesday. He gave up four hits and two runs over seven innings, with no walks and 11 strikeouts. He threw 90 pitches and got nine swings and misses on 20 swings against his slider.

Bradish has thrown his fastball 51 percent thus far, at an average velocity of 94.7 mph, and uses his slider 31 percent, curveball 10 percent and changeup eight percent. He is getting a 43.2 groundball rate.

The 25-year-old rookie allowed a two-run, inside-the-park home run to Harrison Bader of the Cardinals in the sixth inning of that last outing. He responded to that by striking out five of the last six he faced over his last two innings.

For the year, he has thrown 17 innings, allowing 15 hits and eight earned runs with three walks to 16 strikeouts. He has recorded a 1.059 WHIP, allowing 7.9 hits per nine with 1.6 homers, a 1.6 walk rate and 8.5 strikeout rate.

Righty Luis Severino (2-0, 4.08 ERA) will make his seventh start for the Yankees. The team is 6-0 when he takes the mound. His ERA was 2.08 over his first three starts but is 5.74 his last three. That includes an outing April 26 at Yankee Stadium against the Orioles in which he allowed four runs and three hits over six innings on 77 pitches. That was a season high for him in runs allowed. Over these past three games, he has given up 10 earned runs in 15 2/3 innings, with a .762 OPS against.

Severino, who underwent Tommy John surgery on Feb. 27, 2020, gave up three earned runs over 4 2/3 to the Blue Jays in his last game.

Lefty batters hit .302 with a .906 OPS against him, and right-handers are batting .232/.665.

The Orioles (14-21) have lost four of five. Over longer stretches they are 8-7 the last 15 games and 11-13 over the past 24. They are 9-7 at home and 3-1-1 in five home series.

The O’s own the lowest home ERA in the major leagues with a mark of 2.51, as well as the sixth-best home batting average in the AL at .242. And O’s pitchers have allowed six longballs at home this year, the fewest in the majors.

The Orioles gave up just six runs in three games in taking two of three from New York during the April 15-17 series in Baltimore. Then they allowed 27 runs in the Bronx when the Yankees swept them April 26-28.

New York (25-9) has the best record in the majors and is 18-3 the past 18 games. They are on a 119-win pace, and are 11-5 in road games and 12-6 within the AL East.

Entering this series, New York has won eight straight series. But the Yankees’ 3.79 ERA (23 ER/54.2 IP) against the O’s is their second-highest ERA against another team this year, behind a 3.82 ERA (15 earned runs over 35 1/3 innings pitched) in four games against the Chicago White Sox.

Lowest bullpen ERAs in majors since May 4:

1) Baltimore Orioles at 1.88
2) Houston Astros at 2.31
3) Oakland Athletics at 2.41
4) Minnesota Twins at 2.58
5) Los Angeles Angels at 2.58 

 

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