It's almost humorous how things change from one week to the next in the major leagues.

A week ago, the Orioles had an off day before heading into New York to play three games against the Yankees. The Orioles had won seven of their past nine games and the Yankees had lost five out of six.


This week, the Orioles will host the Yankees for three games. The two teams are currently headed in opposite directions. The Orioles have dropped below .500 (24-25) after five consecutive losses and the Yankees are on a five-game winning streak, including the final two games of last week's series against the Orioles.

Over the weekend, New York scored 31 runs in a three-game sweep against the Seattle Mariners. Former Oriole Erik Bedard pitched for Seattle on Friday night and allowed nine runs in 4 1/3 innings. He suffered the loss as the Yankees won, 13-2.

After scoring 12 runs last Tuesday in New York, the Orioles have only scored nine runs in their past five games. It's pretty obvious that they'll need to score more runs in order to end the losing streak, but it won't be easy against the resurgent Yankees.

Pitching matchups

Monday 5/26: Garrett Olson (3-1, 5.19) vs. Darrell Rasner (3-0, 1.89)

Tuesday 5/27: Brian Burres (4-4, 3.16) vs. Ian Kennedy (0-3, 7.27)

Wednesday 5/28: Jeremy Guthrie (2-5, 3.62) vs. Andy Pettitte (4-5, 4.27)

Who you should play from the Yankees

Andy Pettitte, LHP – In his career, Pettitte is 23-6 with a 3.77 ERA in 35 games (33 starts) against the Orioles. He pitched seven scoreless innings at Camden Yards on April 20 and the Yankees beat the Orioles, 7-1. Pettitte is only 4-5 with a 4.27 ERA this season, but there's a pretty good chance he'll pitch well on Wednesday. Make sure he is activated for the start if you've got him on your fantasy team.

Who you should bench from the Yankees

Derek Jeter, SS – Unless you have another solid option at shortstop, you probably shouldn't sit Jeter under any circumstances. He only has two hits in his past 21 at-bats, so it might be a good time to give him a break if you have someone else to carry the load. In 190 career games against the Orioles, Jeter has a .315 batting average with 21 home runs and 101 RBIs. However, he is 4-for-22 against the Orioles this season. Jeter is arguably one of the best clutch hitters in the major leagues, so you should never count him out. Just make sure you know that he hasn't been hitting well lately.

Who you should play from the Orioles

Brian Roberts, 2B – Let's go with Roberts in this spot because he's got the highest batting average (.263) of any of the regulars. OK, so it's not exactly an impressive average for fantasy purposes. He's hitting .286 with 71 runs scored and 30 stolen bases in 101 career games against the Yankees. Forget the fact that he is 2-for-21 against New York this season. Call it a hunch, but I think Roberts will have a solid series.

Who you should bench from the Orioles


Nick Markakis, RF – Markakis is clearly struggling at the plate right now. It's getting to the point where fantasy owners should begin exploring other options until he begins hitting again. Markakis is 3-for-24 in his past six games. His batting average has dropped to .247 and he has only six extra-base hits in May – two doubles and four home runs. Markakis typically hits well against the Yankees – .312 batting average in 41 games – but I wouldn't count on him at this point. Don't panic, but be aware of his struggles.