O’s game blog: Nelson Cruz on Jimmy Paredes and more on today’s game

Because of the rain, today’s game will start a few minutes late as the Orioles have announced a start time of 12:45 p.m. for the series finale.

Cruz Duquette.pngThe Mariners’ Nelson Cruz was a teammate of Jimmy Paredes last year with the Orioles and saw him do pretty well. This year he is seeing more of the same, maybe even better.

Cruz and Paredes are from the Dominican Republic and they trained together this winter in a group that also included the Mariners’ Robinson Cano.

Cruz has been a bit of a mentor for Paredes and said he is proud to see him doing so well.

“He’s very confident right now,” Cruz said this morning. “He came up last year and looked pretty good. I remember telling him he had the bat to play in the big leagues. He just had to find a position. We had a chance to train together in the Dominican. Me, Robbie (Cano) and him. He looks pretty good. Glad to see him doing well.”

Heading into today’s game, Paredes is batting .343 in 26 games with six homers, 23 RBIs and a .983 OPS.

The Orioles and Mariners conclude their three-game series this afternoon, weather permitting. They have exchanged wins with the Orioles taking a 9-4 victory Tuesday before the Mariners won 4-2 last night.

The Orioles are 17-20 for the season, 10-8 at home, 6-6 in the last game of a series and 6-5-1 in 12 series for the 2015 season.

After Wei-Yin Chen tossed seven innings last night, O’s starting pitchers have now recorded at least seven innings in six straight starts and in seven of their last eight. During their six-game streak, Birds starters are 3-3 with a 2.51 ERA.

Tyler Wilson made his major league debut in the ninth inning last night. He is the fourth Oriole to make his MLB debut this season (after Jason Garcia, Rey Navarro, and Mike Wright) and the 994th player to appear in a game for the Orioles since the team moved to Baltimore in 1954.

Manny Machado collected his 10th multi-hit game of the season after going 2-for-4, and he has now hit safely in 13 of his last 15 games (.328/.381/.500), including three straight.

On the mound today, Chris Tillman (2-5, 6.34 ERA) faces left-hander J.A. Happ (3-1, 2.98 ERA).

Tillman’s start has been pushed back to today due to lower back spasms. In his last start on May 12, he gave up five runs and nine hits in 6 2/3 innings against Toronto.

He is 0-4 over his last four starts with an ERA of 6.84, and is 0-2 with an ERA of 11.57 in two home starts this season. In six career starts against Seattle, the team that drafted him in the second round in 2006, Tillman is 6-0 with a 2.03 ERA.

Happ has been pitching well for the Mariners, allowing two earned runs or less in six of his seven starts. He has pitched to an ERA of 1.50 his past two starts.

In eight career games, seven starts versus the Orioles, Happ is 2-3 with a 2.93 ERA.

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