Tampa Bay Rays (75-79 SU, 73-81 RL, 75-76-3 O/U) vs. Baltimore Orioles (74-81 SU, 72-83 RL, 77-74-4 O/U)
MLB: Sunday, September 24, 2017, Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Baltimore, Maryland, 1:35 pm ET
Lines: Tampa Bay -113, Baltimore +103; Over/Under: 9.5
It’s the conclusion of what may well end up being an eliminator for the wild card race as a pair of AL East foes meet in the land of Edgar Allan Poe. The Tampa Bay Rays play the final game of their four game set with the Baltimore Orioles Saturday night. Baltimore won the opening game of the series, taking a 3-1 victory on Thursday night. Tampa Bay squared the set with an 8-3 triumph Friday night. Jake Odorizzi took the hill for the Rays in Saturday’s third game of the series: he was set to square off with Baltimore’s Jeremy Hellickson. First pitch in that contest was scheduled for 7:05 pm ET.
Tampa Bay Rays Fighting to Stay in Wild Card Picture
Tampa Bay took the second game of this series to even things up but their playoff hopes are bleak. The Rays entered Saturday five games behind the Twins for the second wild card spot with eight games to go. Wilson Ramos (run, four RBI) had three hits to lead Tampa Bay while Corey Dickerson (run, RBI) and Daniel Robertson each chipped in a pair. Alex Cobb (12-10) turned in a quality start in picking up the victory: he allowed three runs on nine hits with one walk and four strikeouts over six innings of work in the contest.
Chris Archer takes the mound for his 33rd start of the year for the Rays in this contest. He is 9-11 with a 4.02 ERA, a 1.261 WHIP, 57 walks and 241 strikeouts over 192.1 innings of work this season. Archer took the loss in his last start, which came Tuesday at home against the Cubs in interleague action. He allowed two runs on four hits with one walk and six strikeouts over six innings in an eventual 2-1 Tampa Bay loss. He is 0-3 with a 7.62 ERA, a 1.85 WHIP, five walks and 16 strikeouts over 13 innings in his last three starts. He makes his 16th career appearance and 15th start against the Orioles: he is 4-7 with a 4.78 ERA and a 1.408 WHIP over 86.2 innings of work. Archer is 1-4 with a 6.06 ERA and a 1.745 WHIP over six appearances, five starts, covering 32.2 innings at Oriole Park at Camden Yards in his career.
Baltimore Orioles See Playoff Hopes Dimmed
Baltimore dropped their 13th game in their last 16 with the loss Friday night and in the process, made their already long odds for the postseason even longer. The Orioles entered Saturday 5.5 games behind the Twins with seven to go, leaving them an elimination number of two. Chris Davis (run, RBI), Adam Jones (run) and Tim Beckham each had two hits for Baltimore in the loss. Davis hit a solo homer, his 25th of the season, for the Orioles. Ubaldo Jimenez (6-11) struggled again as he took the loss after giving up six runs on eight hits with no walks and three strikeouts over three innings of work.
Dylan Bundy takes the mound for his 29th start of the season here. He comes in 13-9 with a 4.24 ERA, a 1.196 WHIP, 51 walks and 152 strikeouts over 169.2 innings of work. Bundy recorded a no-decision in his last start, which came at home against the Red Sox Monday. He allowed six runs on seven hits with one walk and two strikeouts over 4.1 innings in an eventual 10-8, 11 inning, Orioles defeat. Bundy is 0-1 with a 7.53 ERA, a 1.60 WHIP, six walks and 15 strikeouts over 14.1 innings in his last three starts. He is 1-2 with a 6.26 ERA and a 1.50 WHIP over 27.1 innings in six appearances, five starts, against the Rays in his career. Bundy is 12-8 with a 3.76 ERA and a 1.141 WHIP in 36 appearances, 24 starts, covering 160.1 innings at Oriole Park at Camden Yards in his career.
- Rays are 11-2 in Archer’s last 13 starts during game 4 of a series
- Rays are 4-1 in Archer’s last 5 Sunday starts
- Orioles are 3-13 in their last 16 overall
- Orioles are 1-5 in their last 6 home games
- Orioles are 2-11 in their last 13 games on grass
Barring a miracle, both teams will end their season next week and head into the offseason full of questions that need to be answered. For the Rays, their inconsistency has been maddening: despite some solid offensive seasons from players, they struggle to put together decent run totals on a regular basis. Baltimore has all the offense in the world but their pitching is atrocious. In this one, the de facto aces of their respective rotations are on the mound. Archer is the better bet in this one given his ability to punch guys out. Combine that with Baltimore’s shaky bullpen and the arrow points toward Tampa Bay.