Down the Stretch (Sept. 11)

Down the Stretch (Sept. 11)

[Down the stretch is a daily Orioles Insider blog that will set up the coming day for the O's and their American League competition as the push for the postseason continues.]

About last night

Closers Johnson and Rodney make case for Cy Young
Rays manager Maddon says he's 'happy for Baltimore'
2 Orioles broadcasters up for Ford C. Frick consideration
Peter Schmuck grades the Orioles
Monday's full scoreboard

AL East Standings

NYY       79-61     --
BAL       78-62     1
TB         77-63     2

AL Wild-Card Standings

OAK        80-60     --
BAL         78-62      --
TB          77-64    1.5
LAA         77-63     1
DET        73-67      5

Today's game

Rays at Orioles, 7:05 p.m.


LHP Matt Moore (10-9, 3.66 ERA) vs. RHP Jason Hammel (8-6, 3.46 ERA)

Key matchup

Matt Wieters is 4-for-7 with 2 home runs against Moore in the young lefty's career. One of those homers came last September, when Moore was pitching out of the bullpen.

Other games that matter

Yankees (Kuroda) at Red Sox (Lester), 7:10 p.m.

Indians (Jimenez) at Rangers (Harrison), 8:05 p.m.

Tigers (Gister) at White Sox (Peavy), 8:10 p.m.

Athletics (Straily) at Angels (Williams), 10:05 p.m.

Thought of the day

It's tough to say the Orioles got the luck of the draw in terms of pitching matchups for this series when the guy they face tonight is 2-1 against them this season with a 1.15 ERA.

But to avoid David Price and James Shields in a key three-game series certainly works in their favor.

Moore has been really good against the O's this season, but this will be his fourth start against them, so he won't bring any surprises. He's also lost his past two starts, and now he's dealing with analysts saying he's tipping his pitches.

Tomorrow's starter Alex Cobb (9-8, 4.28 ERA) has been good, but he's no Price or Shields. He's never faced the Orioles.

Jeremy Hellickson (8-10, 3.33 ERA) is scheduled to start Thursday's series finale. He's historically pitched well against the O's, including a 1.10 WHIP in four starts against them this season, but he's 1-2 in those games. And again, it's worth mentioning this will be his fifth time facing the Orioles this season.

The O's are also scheduled to avoid rookie right-hander Chris Archer, who has struck out 25 batters in his first three career starts and could have been a tough matchup for a team that swings and misses quite a bit.


The Rays' advantage over most teams is their pitching, and that's still the case looking at this week's matchup at Camden Yards. But I doubt the Orioles will be complaining about missing the top two guys in Tampa Bay's rotation.

Inside the enemy clubhouses

Tweet of the night

Adam Jones (@SimplyAJ10): Unreal. I still have chills and I'm at the pad now

(Jones on the ovation a group of Orioles received at the Ravens game last night.)

Poll question

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