Baltimore Orioles vs. Tampa Bay Rays - 4/9/16 MLB Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Tampa Bay Rays (2-2) at Baltimore Orioles (4-0)
MLB Baseball: Saturday, April 9, 2016 at 7:05 pm (Camden Yards)
D Smyly (0-1) (6.75) vs. M Wright (0-0) (0.00)
The Line: Baltimore Orioles +105 / Tampa Bay Rays -115 --- Over/Under: 8.5 See the Latest Odds
TV: MASN, FOX SPORTS SUN
Saturday evening, the MLB is bringing us a matchup between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Baltimore Orioles. This will be game two of the series.
In game one Friday, Baltimore beat up Tampa Bay for a 6-1 victory. The game was something of a solo-homer bonanza; Chris Davis, Jonathan Schoop, Manny Machado and Nolan Reimold obliged themselves with dingers when no one was on base. Catcher Matt Weiters came up with the other two RBI for the Orioles in a 2-for-4 performance.
The Rays will be starting left-hander Drew Smyly for this game. Smyly is making his second start of the season after Monday’s loss to the Blue Jays. In that game, Smyly was beat up for five runs in 6 2/3 innings, giving up three home runs and a double in his six hits. The Rays will be hoping for a bounce-back here.
Backing up Smyly at the plate is a pretty powerful group of Rays hitters. Evan Longoria will be one of the heavy contributors; he’s coming off a 5-for-17 performance in the opening series with two doubles and two runs. Tampa also needs a big lift from Corey Dickerson this season, and in the opening series he homered twice--but those were his only two hits.
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Over on the Orioles mound will be right-hander Mike Wright, who has something of a loose grasp on the fourth-starter role. Wright put up a 4.79 ERA with 17 strikeouts in 20 2/3 innings of work this spring, and carried a bloated 6.04 ERA for Baltimore last season. Wright will need to post some solid numbers in a hurry if he wants to solidify his rotation spot.
The Orioles have an embarrassment of riches in power at the middle of their lineup. Manny Machado, Chris Davis and Mark Trumbo will swing the heavy bats for Baltimore. Machado is off to a decent start, putting up four hits with a solo homer in the opening series. Davis has just two hits thus far, but does have a solo home run of his own. As for Trumbo, he’s turned in five hits and two runs for Baltimore, but has no RBI yet.
As far as the trends for this matchup go, we can see positives on both sides. The Rays are 8-1 in Smyly’s last nine starts with four days of rest, and 5-2 in their last seven game twos in a series. Tampa Bay is also 7-4 in their last 11 overall.
As for Baltimore, they’re 9-0 in their last eight home games and 6-0 in their last six against the American League East.
Despite the Orioles’ strong start, I have to go with Tampa Bay here. Most of that is due to the pitching matchup, as I’m not thrilled about Mike Wright’s chances. It’s a sketchy pick, given Baltimore’s big win in game one, but the Orioles won’t be sending bombs off of Drew Smyly with such regularity.