O’s game blog: Looking for a series victory in Texas

For the Orioles, the search for the elusive series win could end tonight in Arlington, Texas. Without a series victory since April 22-24 versus the Chicago White Sox, they will try to win tonight’s rubber match game against Texas.

The Orioles (19-42) allowed 11 runs Tuesday but won. They allowed just two runs in 12 innings last night but lost. When Richie Martin homered in the ninth to tie it up last night, the Orioles had a chance for their first win this year when trailing after eight innings. But they didn’t get it and fell to 0-35 when behind after eight.

They have won the series-opening contest in three straight series. But the first two times they did it - against Detroit and San Francisco on the last homestand - they lost the next two games of the series.

The Orioles offense has scored two runs or less in five of their past seven games. The Baltimore offense ranks 12th in the American League in team batting average (.239), 13th in OBP (.299) and 11th in slugging (.405).

Texas (31-28) has won 14 of its last 20 after Wednesday’s extra-inning win. The Rangers are 21-10 at home and 10-3 in their past 13 home games.

Hess-in-gray-sidebar.jpgRight-hander David Hess (1-7, 7.36) will try again tonight to produce a solid start. He gave up seven runs in four innings his last time out against the Giants. Over his past five starts, Hess is 0-3 with an ERA of 9.85, allowing 11 homers and 27 earned runs in 24 2/3 innings.

The Orioles are 2-9 in his starts, losing the last five. The last win in a Hess start came on May 1. Hess has yielded two or more homers in five of his 11 starts and three or more four times.

Lefty batters hit .267 with an OPS of .774 off him while right-handers bat .279/.1.044. He gives up an average of .340 and OPS against of 1.155 when pitching with runners in scoring position.

Righty Ariel Jurado (2-2, 2.43) is set to make his 13th appearance and fourth start for Texas. His last two outings came in starts, and over 12 1/3 innings, he gave up 11 hits and four runs and posted back-to-back quality starts.

Jurado, who has a WHIP of 1.213, allows 2.4 walks per nine innings and records 6.7 strikeouts. In his three 2019 starts, he is 1-1 with a 3.24 ERA. In nine bullpen games, he is 1-1 with a 1.38 ERA.

Jurado, 23, from Panama, has a groundball rate of 54.8 percent to rank sixth-best in the AL. He has made one career start against the Orioles. He got the win on Aug. 3, 2018 when he gave up two runs and six hits over five innings.

Minor league award winners: The Orioles today announced that Single-A Delmarva lefty Drew Rom was named Minor League Pitcher of the Month for May, and outfielder DJ Stewart was named Minor League Player of the Month for May.

Rom, who earlier this week was named to the South Atlantic League All-Star Game, made five starts in May, going 3-0 with a 0.35 ERA (1 ER/25.2 IP), eight walks, and 32 strikeouts. Rom’s only run allowed came on May 30, after recording a 25 1/3-inning scoreless streak.

Stewart batted .456/.512/.882 with 10 doubles, two triples, five home runs, 15 runs scored, and 27 RBIs in 19 games in May. He was promoted to the big league club prior to the game on Tuesday, May 28.

This afternoon, Double-A Bowie beat New Hampshire 7-5. Anderson Feliz went 3-for-5 with two RBIs while Austin Hays was 2-for-4 with an RBI double. Rylan Bannon was 3-for-4 with an RBI. Right-hander Pedro Araujo got the win with his fifth scoreless outing his past six games. He is 1-2 with a 4.07 ERA.

In their last 37 games, a Single-A Frederick starting pitcher has allowed more than two runs on only eight occasions. In this span, Keys starters have 2.63 ERA and 198 strikeouts in 181 2/3 innings. The Keys’ starting pitcher ERA has been sliced from 6.48 to 3.77 and that is fourth-best in the Carolina League.

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