Cleveland Indians vs. Baltimore Orioles Free Pick - 9/3/13
2013-09-03 06:05:00 EDT
The Baltimore Orioles and Cleveland Indians collide once again at Progressive Field.
Baltimore has been fading slowly from the postseason picture in the American League East but are right in the middle of the Wild Card battle. The season for the Orioles has boiled down to playing well over the last 25 games or so and if they do the playoffs are there for the taking. The Birds have taken two steps in the right direction with back to back victories after a 7-2 decision at Cleveland on Monday. The pitching and hitting were on the same page with Bud Norris allowing a single run four hits and a BB while striking out eight in seven innings. The bats came up big on eleven hits and six free passes that saw Nate McLouth and Matt Wieters homer and drive in five while Brian Roberts knocked in two more. Chris Tillman will be on the bump versus Cleveland Tuesday looking to keepthe Orioles afloat in the Wild Card race. Tillman is coming in off of a 3-2 decision at Boston when he gave up two runs on six hits over seven innings.
Even though Cleveland is right there with Baltimore in the Wild Card race they haven’t been playing well with defeats in six of seven following Monday’s loss. The offense has been faltering in this stretch and this is a team that needs to score to be successful. That hasn’t been happening and it’s wasted a few strong outings on the mound. Neither the arms or bats came through Monday with Justin Masterson lasting only one inning before leaving with a rib problem which saw eight hurlers scrambling to finish the game. The bats totaled six hits and walked once with Lonnie Chisenhall and Jason Kipnis slamming solo homers. The Indians turn to Ubaldo Jimenez for Tuesday’s start against the playoff hopeful Orioles. Jimenez has dropped two straight even though he threw the ball well with five runs given up over 13 frames while whiffing 20.
I can’t fault Cleveland for what happened Monday with Masterson leaving early but that might limit who is available in the pen Tuesday. I personally don’t see much of an edge either way so I’ll go with one of my favorite teams…