Orioles vs. Mets Series Preview

Sports and Bets — August 18, 2015 at 6:36 pm by

The Birds catapulted themselves into the 2nd AL Wild Card spot with their four-game sweep of the A’s. It sure was a good time for the Orioles to record their first ever four-game sweep of the A’s in Baltimore (Kubatko). With only 45 games left in the season, the playoff races are really heating up. Up next for the O’s on their 10-game homestand is a two-game series against the NL East-leading Mets. Let’s keep those sweet, sweet walk-off bombs coming, babes.

The Breakdown
Baltimore Orioles (61-56) vs. New York Mets (63-55)
Season Series: New York leads 2-0
Last 10 Games: Baltimore’s 6-4, New York’s 5-5
Runs: Baltimore’s 6th, New York’s 27th
Home Runs: Baltimore’s 4th, New York’s 17th
Batting Average: Baltimore’s 11th, New York’s 30th
On-Base Percentage: Baltimore’s 19th, New York’s 29th
Team ERA: Baltimore’s 12th, New York’s 2nd
Starter ERA: Baltimore’s 23rd, New York’s 4th
Bullpen ERA: Baltimore’s 4th, New York’s 6th
Fewest Errors Made: Baltimore’s 1st, New York’s tied for 10th

Baltimore’s Injury Report
P Chaz Roe: 15-day DL (right shoulder)
P Mike Wright: 15-day DL (left calf)
OF Steve Pearce: 15-day DL (left oblique)

New York’s Injury Report
P Jerry Blevins: 60-day DL (left forearm)
P Buddy Carlyle: 60-day DL (hip surgery)
P Josh Edgin: 60-day DL (Tommy John; out for season)
P Erik Goeddel: 60-day DL (right elbow; currently on rehab assignment)
P Steven Matz: 15-day DL (left lat; currently on rehab assignment)
P Jenrry Mejia (serving 162-game suspension for PEDs)
P Rafael Montero: 60-day DL (right shoulder)
P Bobby Parnell: 15-day DL (right elbow)
P Zach Wheeler: 60-day DL (Tommy John; out for season)
INF David Wright: 60-day DL (right hamstring; currently on rehab assignment)
OF Kirk Nieuwenhuis: 15-day DL (back)
OF Cesar Puello: 60-day DL (back)

Tuesday, August 18 at 7:05 p.m. on MASN
RHP Kevin Gausman (2-4) vs. RHP Jacob deGrom (11-6)
Gausman’s 2015: 16 G, 8 GS, 60.1 IP, 52 Ks, 4.48 ERA, 1.21 WHIP
Gausman’s Last Three Starts: 1-2, 19.2 IP, 18 K, 5.03 ERA, 1.17 WHIP
deGrom’s 2015: 22 GS, 146.2 IP, 152 Ks, 2.03 ERA, 0.89 WHIP
deGrom’s Last Three Starts: 1-0, 19.1 IP, 24 Ks, 1.86 ERA, 0.98 WHIP

Gausman was sharp in his last start, but he was saddled with the loss after Hisashi Iwakuma no-hit the Birds. He gave up three runs on six hits and two walks while striking out eight Mariners over seven innings. It seems that Gausman might be starting to turn the corner, as he’s posted quality starts in three of his last four outings. He’s also pitched at least seven innings in all three of these quality starts. He’ll look to give the O’s another strong outing in his first career start (second appearance) against the Mets. Earlier this season, Gausman pitched a perfect inning against New York while striking out two.

deGrom has been nothing short of phenomenal this season. The 2014 Rookie of the Year is 2nd in ERA, 2nd in WHIP, 5th in WAR, 4th in quality start percentage, and 9th in strikeout to walk ratio. Over his last 15 starts, he’s given up two earned runs or fewer in 14 of them. In his five starts since the All-Star break, the 27-year-old righty is 2-0 with a 1.64 ERA and 0.79 WHIP, and he’s struck out 40 batters over 33 innings. deGrom’s mid 90s fastball is by far his best pitch, and he’s been throwing it 63.2% of the time this season. He compliments his heater with a slider, a changeup, and a curveball. This will be deGrom’s second career start against the O’s. Earlier this season, the first-time All-Star picked up the win against the Birds after holding them to one run on six hits and a walk while striking out nine batters over seven innings.

Good News: Since being acquired by the O’s, Gerardo Parra is batting .292/.343/.477 with 3 HRs, 5 RBIs, and 15 runs scored in 15 games. Manny Machado is 2-for-3 off deGrom. Kelly Johnson is 0-for-5, Michael Cuddyer is 0-for-1, Lucas Duda is 0-for-1, Curtis Granderson is 0-for-1, and Juan Lagares is 0-for-1 off Gausman. Davis currently leads all of baseball with 89 RBIs and his 34 HRs are good for the 2nd most.

Bad News: Including the 1969 World Series, the Orioles are 10-25 all-time against the Mets. The Birds have also lost their last eight games against New York. Parra is 0-for-6, Jimmy Paredes is 1-for-4, Davis is 0-for-3, Caleb Joseph is 0-for-3, and Adam Jones is 0-for-2 off deGrom. Yoenis Cespedes is 3-for-9 with a HR off Gausman.

Wednesday, August 19 at 7:05 p.m. on MASN
RHP Ubaldo Jimenez (9-7) vs. RHP Noah Syndergaard (7-6)
Jimenez’s 2015: 23 GS, 131 IP, 122 Ks, 3.92 ERA, 1.31 WHIP
Jimenez’s Last Three Starts: 1-1, 17.2 IP, 14 Ks, 5.09 ERA, 1.19 WHIP
Syndergaard’s 2015: 17 GS, 105.2 IP, 111 Ks, 3.07 ERA, 1.10 WHIP
Syndergaard’s Last Three Starts: 2-1, 19 IP, 20 Ks, 4.74 ERA, 1.21 WHIP

Jimenez struggled in his last start, taking a no-decision against the A’s after giving up four runs on nine hits and two walks while striking out six batters over five innings. Unfortunately, that was a pretty typical second half performance for Jimenez. In his six starts since the All-Star break, Jimenez is 2-3 with a 7.39 ERA and 1.45 WHIP, and he’s struck out 24 batters over 31.2 innings. Jimenez will try to find his first half form against a Mets club that he’s quite familiar with from his days in the NL. In seven career starts against New York, Jimenez is 2-4 with a 3.71 ERA and 1.28 WHIP, and he’s struck out 30 batters over 43.2 innings. This season, Jimenez took the loss in his first start against the Mets. He surrendered three runs on six hits and two walks while striking out one batter over four innings.

Coming into the season, Syndergaard was ranked as the 11th best prospect by Baseball America, and the 22-year-old rookie has been able to deliver on his massive hype. Syndergaard’s best pitch is his mid to high 90s fastball, and he’s been throwing it 63.3% of the time this season. He also mixes in a nasty curveball, a changeup, and an occasional slider. This will be Syndergaard’s first career start against the O’s, and thankfully, it’s taking place at Camden Yards. This season, Syndergaard is 7-1 in nine home starts with a 1.82 ERA and 0.81 WHIP, and he’s struck out 65 batters over 64.1 innings. In eight road starts, he’s 0-5 with a 5.01 ERA and 1.55 WHIP, and he’s struck out 46 batters over 41.1 innings.

Good News: Over his last 7 games, Jones is 10-for-29 with 5 HRs, 10 RBIs, and 8 runs scored. Johnson is 8-for-34, Cuddyer is 1-for-9, Daniel Murphy is 1-for-8, Lagares is 0-for-3, Ruben Tejada is 0-for-3, Duda is 0-for-2, and Wilmer Flores is 0-for-2 off Jimenez. The Birds are 36-20 at home, while the Mets are 21-34 on the road.

Bad News: Ryan Flaherty is currently in an 0-for-34 slump, which is the longest in franchise history since 1974 (Kubatko). Juan Uribe is 5-for-14, Granderson is 3-for-13 with a HR, Cespedes is 3-for-10 with a HR, and Anthony Recker is 1-for-2 off Jimenez.

Enjoy the games, and let’s go O’s!

stats: Baseball-Reference
cover pic: Washington Post & Greg Fiume/Getty Images

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