The Orioles, who went 1-6 on a West Coast trip last month to Oakland and Seattle, begin another one tonight. They’ll play three games at Arizona, four in Anaheim and two in San Diego.
The O’s (31-67) have won three of their last four games and are 9-9 over the past 18 games. In that stretch they have won series against Cleveland, Toronto and Boston. They took two of three over the weekend against the Red Sox to complete a 4-5 homestand.
The Orioles came up with their first series win over Boston since Aug. 25-27, 2017 and wrapped it up with yesterday’s 5-0 shutout victory on a one-hitter behind Asher Wojciechowski. Baltimore pitchers have allowed two runs or less in three of the last four and four of the last eight games.
Meanwhile, O’s batters have produced 31 runs on 49 hits the last four games. They have four straight games with at least two homers for the first time all year. They’ve hit nine total with a team batting average of .350 and OPS of 1.015 the last four games.
Arizona (50-50) is tied for second in the National League West, 16 games behind the Dodgers. They are 2 1/2 games behind Milwaukee for the second NL wild card. The Diamondbacks just lost three of four to the Brewers and are 4-5 since the All Star game. Arizona has won six straight interleague matchups, including a three-game sweep against Toronto and a two-game sweep versus Texas.
The Diamondbacks current roster features four former Orioles: Adam Jones (2008-18), T.J. McFarland (2013-16), Christian Walker (2014-15) and Stefan Crichton (2017). Walker is batting fourth tonight and playing first base and Jones is batting fifth in right field.
Jones played 11 seasons for the Orioles and ranks among the club’s all-time leaders in home runs (5th, 263), hits (5th, 1,781) and RBIs (6th, 866). He is also the all-time home run leader at Camden Yards (146).
Right-hander Aaron Brooks (0-0, 1.69 ERA with Orioles) makes his third start for the Birds tonight. He allowed no runs in 2 2/3 on 32 pitches against Tampa Bay and one run in 2 2/3 on 56 pitches against Washington. The Orioles are 2-0 in those games.
Left-hander Robbie Ray (8-6, 3.92 ERA) makes his 22nd start for Arizona. He has a WHIP of 1.299, allows 7.3 hits per nine innings and 1.5 homers. He leads the NL with 57 walks and averages 4.4 walks per nine and 11.7 strikeouts.
Over his past three starts, the 27-year-old Ray is 3-0 with a 2.95 ERA, 0.98 WHIP and .156 average against. The D-backs are 11-10 in his 21 starts in 2019.
On the farm today: Adley Rutschman went 1-for-4 with a single and played catcher as the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League Orioles beat the GCL Braves 9-1 to improve to 15-6. Craig Lewis, the 2019 33rd-round draft pick, had two hits and is batting .455. Winning pitcher Jake Prizina allowed one run and is 2-0 with an ERA of 0.64. Over 14 innings he has no walks and 15 strikeouts.
Double-A Bowie beat Richmond 5-0 in Game 1 of a doubleheader on a complete-game outing by left-hander Bruce Zimmermann. Over seven innings he allowed five hits to improve to 5-3 with a 2.58 ERA.
At the time of publication tonight, Bowie was about to head to the last of the seventh trying for a combined no-hitter in Game 2. Cody Sedlock started and went five innings and Cristian Alvarado pitched the sixth.