Halfway through August, the Baltimore Orioles have yet to win back-to-back games this month. That could change Saturday, as the O's take on the Oakland A's at Camden Yards in the second game of a four-game set. Baltimore won the opener Friday 8-6, thanks to a Manny Machado walk-off homer in the 13th inning. In the meantime, here's a little numerology to keep those neural synapses firing.
1 -- Where the Orioles bullpen ranks in ERA among American League teams since August 1. Since then, O’s relievers have posted a 1.71 ERA. Their 10.07 K/9 is 2nd best in the AL over that stretch (TB, 10.13)
2 -- Number of Orioles who have three stolen bases this season (Adam Jones, Jimmy Paredes). Aside from Jones, Paredes, and Manny Machado, who leads the team with 15 SB, no other Oriole has more than two. Baltimore ranks last in the AL with 31 steals.
3 -- Hits against left-handed pitching last night by Chris Davis, who’s posted a .912 OPS against LHP this season. That’s 43 points higher than his OPS vs. righties, and 209 points higher than his career OPS vs. lefties coming into the season (.703).
4 -- Number of starts made this season by catcher Steve Clevenger, including tonight. Clevenger, who was batting .305 for Triple-A Norfolk, is in the 6-hole Saturday against Oakland righty Chris Bassitt.
5 -- Spot in the lineup where Jonathan Schoop is hitting for the second straight game. In the Orioles’ 61-year history, they’ve never lost when Schoop hits fifth (1-0).
6 -- Number of errors the Orioles have made since the All-Star break, fewest in MLB. For the season, the O’s have committed 45 miscues, also the best in baseball. The next closest team is the Dodgers, who’ve made 51 errors.
7 -- The number of different lineups the Orioles have used in the last seven games, including tonight. For the season, they’ve now used 105 different lineups, the second most in MLB. Houston has used the most (109). Kansas City has used the fewest (54).
8 -- Where Henry Urrutia, recalled from Triple-A Norfolk earlier today, will hit in Buck Showalter’s Saturday lineup. Urrutia will be the DH tonight, as he was for all 11 of his starts back in 2013, his first stint in the bigs. But Showalter says that Urrutia will see time in the outfield as well.
9 -- Number of hits given up by Ubaldo Jimenez last night over five frames. It marked the ninth time in the last 14 games that an Orioles starter failed to last six innings.
10 -- Number of strikeouts recorded in 7 1/3 innings by reliever Mychal Givens in his first five major league appearances, all scoreless. Givens has allowed just three hits and one walk.