O’s game blog: Kevin Gausman looks for first win as O’s face Boston

Now leading the American League East by one game over Boston and three games over Toronto, the Orioles play the Red Sox in the second game of their three-game series tonight at Fenway Park.

The Orioles are 51-32 (.614) against Boston since the 2012 season and they are 26-16 (.619) at Fenway Park in that stretch. They are 5-3 this year in the season series after last night’s 3-2 win.

The Orioles lead the majors in home runs after hitting two more last night:

101 - Orioles
95 - Seattle
93 - Tampa Bay
89 - Toronto

The Orioles have a major league-best 32 home runs in the month of June, nine more than Texas, the next closest team. The major league record for most homers in June is 55 (Oakland in 1996) and the most for any single month is 58 (Baltimore in 1987 and Seattle in 1999). The O’s are on a pace to hit 69 this month. The Orioles have five players with 10 or more home runs, tied for most in the majors with Seattle and Washington.

Adam-Jones-Mark-Trumbo-white-fist-bump-sidebar.pngWith a fifth-inning blast last Tuesday, Mark Trumbo became the first player in the majors to reach 20 home runs. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Trumbo is the third Orioles hitter in the last four seasons to be the first in the majors to 20 homers. Chris Davis did so in 2013 and Nelson Cruz accomplished the feat in 2014. Prior to Davis, the last Oriole to be the first in the majors to reach 20 home runs was Frank Robinson in 1967.

On the mound tonight, right-hander Kevin Gausman (0-3, 3.45 ERA) pitches against right-handed knuckleballer Steven Wright (7-4, 2.09 ERA). Wright is the AL leader in ERA entering tonight’s games.

Gausman remains without a win despite allowing two earned runs or less in six of his 10 starts, despite recording six quality starts and despite pitching to an ERA of 2.19 over his past two starts.

Gausman’s ERA is 4.95 in the first two innings of his starts and 2.10 in innings three through five. Left-handed batters hit .215 off him, right-handed hitters are batting .273 and he allows an average against of just .163 when pitching with runners in scoring position.

Wright is having a fantastic season for the Red Sox. He has not allowed an earned run his past two starts and has allowed two earned runs or fewer in 10 of 12 starts. Boston is 7-5 in his 12 starts. On May 30 at Camden Yards, Wright beat the Orioles with a complete-game four-hitter, throwing 122 pitches. In three career games against Baltimore, he is 1-0 with a 1.84 ERA.

The Orioles and five other teams are tied for the best record in the majors in June. The O’s are 9-4, and so are the Cubs, Tigers, Reds and Rangers.

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