A light card on the diamond tonight, as only nine games are on the schedule, only three are American League matchups. The streaky Baltimore Orioles will look to fend off the rest of the AL East tonight, leading the division by 2 games on the Blue Jays and 2.5 on the Red Sox. The Orioles should be giving a big thanks to the Tigers, who swept the Red Sox at home, and in the process, pushing them back to the 3rd in the division. For now at least, as it looks like places are going to change positions several times before the end of the regular season. The Jays recently added Melvin Upton from the Padres and might not be done adding talent. Baltimore and the Red Sox have sat quiet thus far.
The Orioles have been streaky, but when they’ve been hot, they have been really hot. They will win six or seven straight games, and then lose three in a row. The surges of wins for the Orioles have definitely outweighed the losing streaks. However, problem being here, if the O’s aren’t hot at the right time, mainly near the end of the season or in the postseason they are cooked. On the other hand, hit one of their winning streaks and they could strike gold. The Orioles are currently in the midst of a three-game losing streak after losing to the Rockies a night ago.
This is on the heels of five wins in a row. Previous to that, the Orioles lost four straight games. So yeah, it has been like that for them in 2016. It’s been okay up to this point, as they are coming into tonight at 58-43. Is it going to eventually catch up to them? It may very well if they get caught in a rut they can’t get out of. They travel to Minnesota to face the lowly Twins, a series in which the Orioles need to get back steamrolling the opposition.
Baltimore Orioles vs. Minnesota Twins
Ubaldo Jimenez (5-9, 7.38 ERA) vs. Kyle Gibson (3-6, 4.67 ERA)
Speaking of streaks, the Orioles have hit a mind boggling fourteen UNDER bets in a row. When you think of the Orioles offense comes to mind. There hasn’t been much to be had lately, but conversely, the pitching has been playing extremely well. The Orioles are hoping their pitching will give them the edge deep in the season and postseason. The last time a game went OVER in a Baltimore game was when Ubaldo Jimenez was pitching, which was in fact his last start on July 8th. Jimenez hasn’t started since then, with the Orioles pushing him to the back of the bullpen due to his poor play. The Orioles are going to roll the dice with him tonight and his 7.38 ERA.
Jimenez posted a 10.12 ERA and 2.16 WHIP in his last three starts, so it’s easy to see why they had to pull the cord on him. On the road it’s been a mess for him, posting a 9.00 ERA and 2.14 WHIP. Note that in his last ten appearances, in four of them he allowed 3 or more runs without even reaching the 3rd inning for an average of 4.5 runs against. In his last start, he lasted 1.1 innings while allowing 5 runs and 5 hits. Kyle Gibson can’t speak himself, but Jimenez poses a problem for the Orioles here. Gibson has allowed 4 runs in two of his last three starts, with a 4.26 ERA in those three games. It seems to be that this is going to finally be the game an OVER hits in an Orioles’ game. Jimenez was the last to do it, and I think he’s going to be the second pitcher to do it in weeks.
PICK: OVER 9.5 RUNS (-110)