O's game blog: The series and road trip finale

The Orioles have a winning road trip secured as they take the field in Philadelphia tonight, but they need a victory in the game to pick up another series victory. They’d love to win to erase the memory of their sixth walk-off loss of the year last night. The Phillies scored twice in the ninth to pull it out.

The Orioles (62-39) had a three-game win streak snapped and lost for just the second time in seven games and fourth time in the last 17. They had won nine of their previous 10 road games until this loss.

Tonight, they can extend their AL East lead back to 2.5 games after Miami beat Tampa Bay 7-1 this afternoon.

The road trip started with the Orioles going 3-1 at Tampa Bay and now are 1-1 this series for a 4-2 trip so far with one game left. The Orioles are 8-5 in rubber match games on the season, having not played one since they lost 11-7 in 10 innings to Cincinnati on June 28.

The Orioles are 19-10-3 in series play and are 10-4-2 in road series and 32-19 in road games.

The Orioles are now 54-3 when leading after the eighth inning. They are 14-7 in July and 8-4 in the second half.

Philadelphia (54-47) is 11 games back of Atlanta for the NL East lead but is just ½ game out of the last NL wild card spot. Last year the Phillies won 87 games and made the postseason for the first time since the 2011 season. They reached the World Series before losing in six games to Houston.

The Phillies are 6-6 in the second half but over a longer stretch are 29-15 since June 3.

Tonight, the Orioles start the pitcher in the rotation on the best roll right now in right-hander Kyle Bradish (6-5, 3.05 ERA). Friday against Tampa Bay, he gave up two runs over six innings on 93 pitches. The Orioles are 11-7 in his outings this season.

* Over his past four starts, he is 2-2 with a 1.07 ERA and 0.947 WHIP.

* He has allowed two earned runs or fewer in seven straight games, going 4-3 with a 1.62 ERA and .532 OPS against.

* He has thrown five consecutive quality starts and 10 for the year.

* He is 2-1 with a 2.43 ERA this year in interleague matchups allowing a .532 OPS. In his most recent outing against an NL team, he pitched 7 1/3 scoreless innings against Miami.

The O’s rotation has been much more consistent since early June. Through June 8, the O’s rotation had 18 quality starts in 62 games, getting one 29.0 percent of the time. The rotation ERA was 4.86.

But since June 9, the O’s have gotten 22 quality starts in 39 games, good for 56.4 percent of the time. The rotation ERA is 3.93 in this span of games. In this series, Dean Kremer and Kyle Gibson allowed three runs in 13 innings.

Philly lefty Ranger Suárez (2-5, 4.07 ERA) gets the start for the home team. The Phils are 7-6 in his outings. In four July starts he is 0-3 with a 6.14 ERA, allowing 15 earned runs in 22 innings. He has given up a .326 batting average and .896 OPS this month. While Suárez has pitched to a 2.95 ERA in road games, he is 0-2 with a 5.64 ERA in six games at home.

On the farm today: High-A Aberdeen split a doubleheader at Jersey Shore, winning Game 1 4-2 and losing the second game 3-2. Aberdeen, which is 11-4 the last 15 games, is 49-40 for the year.

Max Wagner hit a two-run homer in the opener and went 4-for-4 in the second game with a double and three singles. He is batting .248 with an OPS of .800.

Low Single-A Delmarva lost 5-3 at Kannapolis as right-hander Wyatt Cheney gave up five runs over four innings. The Shorebirds are 40-50. Brayan Hernandez hit a solo homer, No. 5, and Carter Young went 2-for-4. Juan De Los Santos threw four scoreless innings in relief.                                                                                                     



Orioles can't hold three-run lead and drop series ...
Updating Henderson and Mullins, plus other notes

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