O’s game blog: Alex Cobb pitches series opener (O’s close with Rodriguez)

After Sunday’s rainout and yesterday’s off-day, the Orioles open a two-game series tonight on the road against the New York Mets. It is the start of a six-game road trip that will also take them to Toronto for a series that starts Thursday.

The Orioles lost by 4-1 and 8-5 scores Friday and Saturday versus the Yankees, with two games rained out in what was scheduled to be a four-game series.

They have now lost seven in a row to tie a season high set May 1-8. The Orioles have scored just 12 runs during those seven games. They have also lost nine of 11 and 13 of their last 17. The Orioles are 7-23 in road games.

Cobb-throws-gray-sidebar.jpgRight-hander Alex Cobb (1-7, 6.80 ERA) will make his 10th start tonight. Over his first three starts, he went 0-3 with a 13.11 ERA and .484 batting average against. He’s had several better outings since then and is 1-4 with a 4.67 ERA over his last six starts.

Cobb has four quality starts, all coming over his past six starts. But the Orioles are just 1-8 in his outings this year. The Rays went 15-14 in his starts for them last season. In six road starts, Cobb is 1-4 with a 7.45 ERA and .376 batting average against.

Lefty batters have excelled versus Cobb in 2018, batting .422 with an OPS of 1.131, with 35 hits in 83 at-bats. Right-handed batters are hitting .311/.909 against him and he yields a .358 average when pitching with runners in scoring position.

Adam Jones had three hits Saturday night, and it was his 10th three-hit game and his 17th multi-hit game. Over his past 25 games, Jones is batting .353 with six homers.

Lefty Jason Vargas (2-3, 8.53 ERA) will make his seventh start of the year for the Mets. Over 25 1/3 innings he has allowed 36 hits, including six homers, with 11 walks and 23 strikeouts. Vargas gave up 15 runs in 8 1/3 over his first two starts. But he has thrown five scoreless in two of his past three starts.

The Mets are 27-30 and have lost four in a row and nine of 11. They are 12-17 at home. The Mets got off to an 11-1 start this year and were 14-5 through 19 games. But since then the Mets are 13-25.

Draft updates: Click here to check out today’s coverage of the Orioles’ draft picks in rounds three through 10. The O’s first pick today in round three was University of Arkansas right-hander Blaine Knight. Through 10 rounds they have selected eight pitchers (six right-handers and two lefties) along with a shortstop and outfielder. They have picked seven of 10 from the college ranks.

If you missed what their top two picks, prep pitcher Grayson Rodriguez and Oregon State shortstop Cadyn Grenier, had to say about joining the club, click here for that story.

The Orioles have named Kyle Moore as manager of the Single-A short season Aberdeen IronBirds for the 2018 season. Kevin Bradshaw suffered a season-ending injury and will remain in Florida while he recovers. Moore was the hitting coach at Single-A Frederick.

Signing update: The Orioles are close to agreements with multiple draft picks, MASNSports.com has learned. That includes with their top pick, prep right-hander Grayson Rodriguez. He was drafted No. 11 overall and the listed slot amount for that pick is $4,375,100. Rodriguez is expected to agree to a slightly under-slot bonus. The O’s are close with almost all of their other draft picks through 10 rounds.

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