Friday, April 13, 2012

Series Breakdown: Orioles vs. Blue Jays

Starting tonight, the Baltimore Oreo's swing into town to take on our Toronto Blue Jays at the Rogers Centre. The Jays are coming off a series win against the Boston Red Sox, whereas the OrioLOLes come to town having been swept by the New York Yankees. The O's opened the season reeling off three straight wins against the Twins to sweep the series, but fell back to earth against the Yanks.

The Blue Jays will be without closer Sergio Santos as he has returned home for the birth of his first child. As per MLB rules, any player placed on the paternity list must sit out at least one game and a maximum of three. With a hat tip to Gregor Chisolm, it appears that Santos will return to Toronto Saturday, although its unclear at this point whether it will be time for the game.John Farrell will be forced to call on Casey Janssen or Francisco Cordero in a save opportunity Friday and possibly Saturday.

The matchups for the series are as follows:

Baltimore Orioles (3-3) vs Toronto Blue Jays (4-2)

Friday, April 13, 2012 - 7:07 PM ET
Tommy Hunter, RHP (1-0, 0.00 ERA) vs. Brandon Morrow, RHP (0-0, 0.00 ERA)

Both Hunter and Morrow were solid in their respective season debuts. Hunter allowed six hits over seven innings against the Twins, giving up two unearned runs while fanning three and waling one. Hunter has struggled so far in his career against the Jays; in six starts he's 1-3 with a 6.75 ERA, Jays have hit .286 off of him for his career.

Morrow also went seven innings, giving up two unearned runs on just one hit. In his career against the Orioles, Morrow is 2-2 in five starts with a 4.46 ERA; though he has held Orioles hitter to a paltry .229 batting average.

Saturday, April 14, 2012 - 4:07 PM ET
Jason Hammel, RHP (1-0, 1.13 ERA)  vs. Henderson Alvarez (0-0, 1.50 ERA)

Hammel was impressive, I suppose, in his season debut with the Orioles, taking a no hitter into the eighth inning against the Twins on Sunday. I'm not sure how difficult it is to pitch to the Twins these days, but nonetheless he allowed a run on two hits and picked up the win. Hammel has five starts in his career against the Jays with a 3-0 record and a 4.35 ERA.

Alvarez was stellar in his season debut with the Jays as he pitched the home opener against the Red Sox. Despite Sergio Santos' collapse in the ninth inning, Alvarez continued to impress in his short tenure with the Jays. He posted his seventh quality start in 11 starts since being called up last season, wow. Alvarez was stellar against the Orioles in his two starts last season, in two starts he has thrown 15 innings, winning one of the two games, surrendering only 3 runs and 12 hits while sriking out 9.

Sunday, April 15, 2012 - 1:07 PM ET
Brian Matusz, LHP (0-1, 9.00 ERA) vs Kyle Drabek (1-0, 1.69 ERA)

Sunday's game will feature two young starting pitchers who have in many ways followed the same career paths thus far. Brian Matusz is a very talented young lefty for the Orioles but has struggled thus far in is his Major League career. Matusz lasted just four innings in his season debut against the Yankees giving up four runs on six hits while walking three. To say the Jays have had Matusz's number early in his career would be an understatement. In three career starts against the Jays, he has pitched only 5.1 innings and has surrendered 11 earned runs, the Jays have hit a whopping .519 against him.

Drabek on the other hand had a great start to the season against the Red Sox, piching five and a third innings giving up a lone run. Kyle has just one career start against the Orioles in his career, picking up the loss over seven innings of three run ball.

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