O’s game blog: Andrew Cashner pitches road trip opener

OAKLAND - After a 1-5 homestand that ended with five consecutive losses, the Orioles are on the west coast to begin a two-city road trip tonight. They’ll play three games in Oakland and four in Seattle before returning to Oriole Park.

When the Orioles hosted Oakland in April, they lost three of four at Camden Yards and allowed 35 runs in that series to the Athletics. They lost by scores of 13-2 and 10-3. Oakland hit 14 homers in that series, including 10 in the last games. As a team they hit .320/.361/.641 in those games.

The A’s (36-36) are 2 1/2 games behind Texas, which currently holds the second AL wild card spot. While the A’s are 19-17 at home this year, they have lost seven of their last eight at Oakland Coliseum. But dating to last June 16, Oakland is 51-26 (.662) at home.

Oakland ranks fifth in the AL with 107 homers. The Athletics have six players that have hit 10 or more, led by Matt Chapman with 16 and Khris Davis with 15. Davis hit four homers and drove in seven runs in that series - all in the last two games of the set. Oakland batters have hit 58 home runs in the last 31 games.

The A’s have been within one game of the .500 mark every day since May 29. They have won three of five and seven of the last 13 games. But over a longer stretch, Oakland is 7-11 in its past 18 games.

The Orioles came up with six runs in Sunday’s loss to Boston, but the Baltimore offense has produced just 13 runs the last four games and 34 in the last 11.

At four hours, 44 minutes, yesterday’s game was the longest of the season. The last five games have taken 4:05, 3:23, 3:24, 3:19 and 4:44 to complete.

cashner-gray-in-dc-sidebar.jpgDuring the five consecutive losses, Baltimore pitchers have allowed 48 runs and 13 homers. The O’s bullpen has an ERA of 10.27 in that span.

After having a scheduled start on Friday pushed back to tonight, right-hander Andrew Cashner (6-2, 4.73) pitches tonight’s trip opener. Cashner felt a hot spot on his right middle finger during his last start June 8 at Houston and it developed into a blister that has kept him off the mound until tonight.

The Orioles are 8-5 in Cashner’s 13 outings and he leads the team with six quality starts. He threw well at Houston, allowing four hits and one run over six innings. Lefty batters have hit just .202 with a .560 OPS against him, but right-handers are batting .305/.899. Cashner is 3-2 with a 5.05 ERA in eight road starts in 2019.

Oakland right-hander Mike Fiers (6-3, 4.63 ERA) will make his 16th start. Fiers took the mound against Cincinnati on May 7 with an ERA of 6.81. But he pitched his second career no-hitter and has been on a pretty good roll ever since. In seven starts beginning with that game, he is 4-0 with a 2.82 ERA and .163 average against.

Fiers threw 131 pitches in his no-hitter, the most since Aug. 2015, when Fiers threw 134 pitches in that no-hitter. His most recent no-no was the 13th in A’s history.

In four games versus the Orioles - all in Baltimore - Fiers is 3-1 with a 2.08 ERA.

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