The New York Yankees start a long nine game road trip tonight in Baltimore. They will face a surging Baltimore Orioles team that all the sudden find themselves very much in the race for the playoffs in the American League. The Yankees will send rookie lefty Jordan Montgomery (7-7 4.15 ERA) to the mound. The Orioles will counter with budding star Dylan Bundy (13-8 3.94 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 11:05 AM PST from Camden Yard in Baltimore, Maryland.
The Baltimore Orioles have been the story of the American League over the last month. Winners of 19 out of their last 31 games since the July 31st trade deadline they have worked themselves into prime playoff position. Coming into play today the Orioles find themselves only 1.5 games back of the Minnesota Twins for the second wild card in the American League. They will send out Dylan Bundy today to try and stay hot.
Today’s MLB Pick:
New York Yankees (72-63) at Baltimore Orioles (70-67)
Dylan Bundy was the fourth overall pick by the Orioles in the 2011 draft and has been destined for greatness ever since. Bundy had been solid over his first year and a half pitching full time in the bigs, with an ERA hovering right around 4.0 as he figured out to get guys out at the major league level. Then manager Buck Showalter made a conscious effort to give the young Bundy a little bit more rest between starts.
Since then, Bundy has been close to unhittable and is looking like a future superstar. The only thing that Baltimore lacks this season is a strong starting rotation, and if Dylan Bundy can continue mowing through the opposition as he has over the last month, they may have found the ace they badly need. Bundy has won his last five decisions, and in the month of August, he was 4-0 with a 2.00 ERA, including the best start of his career in his last outing against the Seattle Mariners. Against Seattle, Bundy threw his first career complete game shutout, only allowing one hit, and striking out twelve. He has been dominant.
The Yankees will counter with a youngster of their own in the form of Jordan Montgomery. Montgomery has been serviceable in his role as the fifth starter for the Yankees this season. He has struggled a bit over the last six weeks or so, and with the addition of Jaime Garcia, it wouldn’t surprise me to see Montgomery lose his spot in the rotation any day now. Montgomery is 1-3 over the last six weeks with an ERA over five. And he is not getting deep into games at all, as his longest out in his last five starts is just 5.1 innings, and he failed to even make it to the fifth inning twice during that time span. He hasn’t been terrible, but as the Yankees make one final push for the American League East division title, I would think we will see less and less of Jordan Montgomery.
These are two teams that are playing well at the moment. The Yankees see themselves occupying the first wild card spot and they should be able to hold onto one of those wild card slots as the season enters its final month. The Orioles are surging and are my pick to snatch up that last playoff spot in the American League, although the Angels will have a lot to say about that as they just loaded up on talent.
I look for Bundy to continue his hot streak tonight at home. He has been great over his last several starts, and I see no reason for this to end today. It is an early game on the road for a Yankees team that played the late Sunday night game last night. It’s not a long trip to Baltimore from New York, but those early games after a late game are tough, especially on the road. I don’t think Montgomery will be able to handle all the power that Baltimore brings to the table and expect to see him fail to see the sixth inning yet again. I see a lot of value backing the home favorite in this game and will be backing the Orioles today from Baltimore.
PICK: Baltimore -127