With both teams looking up at the Yankees in the AL East standings heading into the week the Orioles and Rays will begin a key three-games series in Baltimore on Tuesday night. In what will be their last head-to-head meeting of the regular season on the MLB betting lines at Bovada, the Orioles and the Rays will each be trying to improve their position for a run at the Yankees and knock the other squad down a notch in the hunt for an AL Wild Card.
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Orioles enter series one game ahead of the Rays
Baltimore had a shot at the division-leading Yankees in a four game series over the weekend and the results were mixed – they won the Thursday and Saturday contests, but lost on Friday and Sunday and will come off Monday's off-day a game behind New York in the AL East standings. As well, the Orioles' offense took a hit on Saturday when Nick Markakis was struck on the hand by a CC Sabathia pitch; the outfielder suffered a broken thumb and won't return to action this season unless the Orioles make a postseason run.
Meanwhile, the Rays managed to take two of three games against the league-leading Texas Rangers in Tampa Bay over the weekend, after beating the Yankees twice in three games at home earlier last week. That stretch has the Rays just one game back of Baltimore and two games back of New York in the tight AL East standings heading into Tuesday's game.
Rays and Orioles have split dozen games this year
The Orioles and Rays have met 12 times already this season, with each team winning six of those dozen matchups. Their most recent series was played in Tampa Bay in early August, with the Orioles taking two of those three games and holding the Rays to just two total runs. The O's scored just five runs in those three games, making each contest a victory for UNDER bettors on the MLB lines at Bovada. In fact, there have been just three OVER results in Orioles/Rays games this season, with two of them coming at Camden Yards.
Baltimore and Tampa Bay have also split their six Camden Yards meetings this season at three wins apiece, which has helped to keep them close not only in the AL East race but in the chase for the AL Wild Card berths as well. Heading into this week the Orioles, Rays, Athletics, and Angels were all within a game of each other in the AL's Wild Card standings, with the Tigers now starting to fade in that race and concentrating on the AL Central title.
Moore, Gonzalez set for series opener on Tuesday
Tuesday's series opener between the Orioles and Rays is set to get underway at 7:05pm ET, with Tampa Bay's Matt Moore (10-9, 3.66 ERA) slated to take on Baltimore's Miguel Gonzalez (6-4, 3.62 ERA). Lefthander Moore is coming off back-to-back losses to the Yankees and Blue Jays, although he did manage to pick up a win against the Orioles in his August 3 outing (six hits over 5 1-3 shutout innings of work). Righthander Gonzalez pitched seven scoreless innings in Tampa Bay on August 5 in a 1-0 Orioles victory, but the Rays knocked him around for seven runs in just 2 2-3 innings in Baltimore on July 25.
Wednesday's scheduled starters are then Alex Cobb (9-8, 4.28 ERA) for the Rays and Jason Hammel (8-6, 3.46 ERA) for the Orioles, with Jeremy Hellickson (8-10, 3.33 ERA) Tampa Bay's probable pitcher for Thursday's 12:35pm ET matinee against a TBA Baltimore hurler.
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