Tampa Bay Rays vs. Baltimore Orioles Preview
Where: Oriole Park at Camden Yards – Baltimore, MD
When: Friday, September 22, 2017 – 7:05 PM ET
TV Broadcast: MASN2, SUN
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Betting on the Tampa Bay Rays (74-79)
Starting for the Rays in the second game of this three-game set is Alex Cobb (11-10, 3.63 ERA). He picked up the loss in his last start against Boston, surrendering three runs on six hits in 5.1 innings of action. That defeat prevented Cobb from becoming the first Tampa Bay pitcher with four victories over the Red Sox in a single season. That being said, the Rays will love having Cobb on the mound for Friday’s clash against Baltimore. Since June 9, the right-hander has posted a 2.98 ERA in 16 starts, surrendering three earned runs or fewer in 14 of those 16 outings. He leads the Rays in wins and ERA this season.
As for the offense, the Rays are feeding off a hot Evan Longoria right now. The veteran third baseman is 9-of-26 in his last six games with four RBIs. He went 1-of-4 in last night’s 3-1 loss to Baltimore. Longoria will be licking his chops at the prospect of facing Ubaldo Jimenez as he is batting .318 in his career against the Orioles starter with two homers and eight RBIs to boot. The Rays need Longoria’s production now more than ever with Tampa Bay losing nine of its last 13 games.
Betting on the Baltimore Orioles (74-80)
Pitching for Baltimore in this AL East matchup is Ubaldo Jimenez (6-10, 6.57 ERA). He dazzled in his last start against the New York Yankees, striking out 10 batters in a thrilling 6-4 victory. It was the second-most strikeouts Jimenez has had in a game this season. The right-hander mowed down the Bronx Bombers, allowing just one run in five innings of action. The Orioles have now won in three of Jimenez’s last four appearances.
After briefly moving to the pen, Jimenez seems set to finish the 2017 season in the Baltimore rotation and has strung together a couple of solid outings ahead of Friday’s showdown with Tampa Bay. The Dominican Republic star can’t do it all alone, though, and he needs the Orioles hitters to contribute on the offensive end as well. Expected to lead Baltimore in that department is Jonathan Schoop. He leads the Orioles not only in homers but also in batting average, on-base percentage, RBIs and hits as well. Schoop’s 4-of-17 in his career against Rays starter Alex Cobb with a homer and one RBI.
Baltimore (+101) wins, 5-4.
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