Rays take 5-game skid into middle game vs. Orioles
According to STATSAccording to STATS
Baltimore Orioles at Tampa Bay Rays
- Baltimore leads its 2017 season series with Tampa Bay, winning five of nine games. Neither team has hit well with runners in scoring position, as the Orioles have hit .193 compared to a .159 mark by the Rays in such situations.
- The Orioles are averaging 6.50 runs since the All-Star break, tying Detroit for the most in the American League. Unfortunately, Orioles pitchers have simultaneously fashioned the highest ERA in the American League since the break (5.90), leading to a 5-5 record.
- The Rays have dropped their last four games, matching a season long (June 2-6). All three losses to the Rangers this weekend were by one run. The only longer streak in franchise history came last July, when Tampa Bay lost four in a row by a single run.
- Over his last six games, Jonathan Schoop is batting .481 (13-for-27) with three home runs, 15 RBI and eight runs scored. Schoop leads all MLB second baseman with 21 homers in 2017, while his 70 RBI pace all American League second basemen.
- Kevin Gausman's 7.98 ERA in road games is the second highest by any Orioles pitcher in the Baltimore era (since 1954). Only Omar Daal, who posted an 8.10 road ERA in 2003, fared worse in any single season.
- Blake Snell remains winless (0-5) through his first 11 starts of 2017. It's the longest such streak by a Rays pitcher to begin any season since Edwin Jackson opened with 13 consecutive winless starts in 2007.
Notes Applicable For Series Dates: 7/24/2017 thru 7/26/2017
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- A week ago, the Tampa Bay Rays were building momentum as a surprise postseason contender.
Now the Rays are on a five-game losing streak and just two games over .500.
The Rays (51-49) will try to regain their momentum and snap their longest losing streak of the season when they continue a three-game series with the Baltimore Orioles on Tuesday.
After opening the series with a 5-0 loss on Monday, Tampa Bay will turn to rookie Jake Faria. The right-hander is off to a solid start to his major league career with a 4-1 record and 2.52 ERA.
Faria, still in his second month in the big leagues, has already faced the Orioles twice -- the only team he has faced more than once. His first two outings vs. Baltimore were quality starts, though he emerged with two no-decisions after yielding a total of six runs (five earned) in 12 2/3 innings.
He is coming off his first career loss, on Wednesday at Oakland when he allowed four runs in five innings.
The Rays have mustered only 13 runs in their five-game skid. They were shut out by Kevin Gausman and two Baltimore relievers on Monday, going 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position and hitting into three inning-ending double plays.
"We just have to continue as this little bit of a funk here goes (on)," Rays manager Kevin Cash said. "We need to find a way to find ourselves out of it, and come to the ballpark ready to win."
The Orioles' rotation, at least statistically, is one that gives opponents a chance to bounce back.
Baltimore's Tuesday starter, Wade Miley, is 4-8 with a 5.58 ERA, though he pitched well in his only start against the Rays this season. He took a tough-luck 2-0 loss in April after allowing four hits in seven innings.
Miley is 4-3 with a 2.60 ERA in 10 career starts against Tampa Bay.
The starting pitching is improved of late, as seen in Gausman's unlikely gem Monday, and the Orioles are taking advantage of elite defense such as Manny Machado's strong play at third base.
The Orioles (48-51) have won six of eight games to propel themselves back into the wild-card chase. Tampa Bay is one game back and Baltimore 3 1/3 back of the last postseason berth in the American League, which is occupied by the Kansas City Royals.
"It all feeds off the starting pitching," Orioles outfielder Adam Jones said. "When they go out there and attack the zone and use our defense, good things tend to happen. I just ride the wave. Baseball's a day-to-day game, and tomorrow, let's just do exactly what we did today, go out aggressive and try to swing the bats."
Momentum in late July can change a team's outlook at the trade deadline.
The Rays, eager to bolster their struggling bullpen, traded for Dodgers reliever Sergio Romo, trusting he would be better than his poor performance in Los Angeles this season.
Romo had a rough debut Monday, allowing both inherited runners to score and giving up two hits and a sacrifice fly in his inning of relief.
The Rays likely aren't done adding to their bullpen, which has been part of their late-inning struggles during the losing streak. If they don't turn things around quickly, however, they may turn themselves from buyers into sellers by the end of the month.
Updated July 25, 2017