Fresh off three victories -- and it should have been four -- against the California Angels, the Orioles figure to be heavy favorites tonight against a Seattle pitching staff that was rocked over the weekend by the New York Yankees.
But if the Orioles and starter Mike Oquist are successful against Seattle starter George Glinatsis, they will have to solve Seattle's usually shaky bullpen.
Unlike the rest of the league, the Orioles have struggled against the Mariners' relievers. In 24 2/3 innings against the Orioles, the Mariners' bullpen has a 1.82 ERA. It also has a 2-1 record with two saves vs. the Orioles.
Against the Yanks, the Mariners' starting pitchers were horrible, allowing 24 runs in their last 23 2/3 innings. Seattle relievers have pitched 12 1/3 innings in the Mariners' past four games and surrendered 22 earned runs.
Their starters have given up four home runs in their last 13 innings. Only one of seven staters this season has an ERA below 4.00. Seven different Mariners relievers have allowed at least one earned run since the All-Star break.
With no solution to their starting pitching woes in the bullpen or at Triple-A Calgary, the Mariners looked to Double-A Jacksonville. They found Glinatsis, a 25-year-old right-hander who has never pitched above Double-A.
Glinatsis, a 32nd-round selection in 1991, was 3-0 with a 1.16 ERA with Jacksonville this year. He completed three of four starts, and gave up 24 hits in 31 innings. Once wild, Glinatsis apparently has settled down. He has struck out 23 and walked only seven this season.