RAYS (76-55) AT ORIOLES (42-88)
1:05 p.m. ET; MASN2, FS-SUN, MLB.TV
Baltimore manager Brandon Hyde has often said he’d like to see his Orioles put all parts of the game together more often.
They did that Saturday night, and the Orioles will try to do so again when they take on the Tampa Bay Rays (-1.5)￼ in the finale of a four-game series Sunday afternoon.
On Saturday, Baltimore got seven strong innings from starter John Means plus three homers — one being a Pedro Severino grand slam — and good defense en route to a 7-1 victory.
Jonathan Villar and Hanser Alberto later hit back-to-back homers. For Villar, it was his 19th homer this season. He needs one more home run to become the sixth Oriole ever to post 20 homers and 20 steals in the same season.
Villar has a .278 average heading into Sunday, along with those 19 homers, 59 RBIs and 28 steals. He said he is not thinking much about joining the 20-20 club but would certainly enjoy being a part of it.
“It would be unbelievable to do that,” Villar told MASN.com. “But if I think about hitting homers, I won’t hit any homers. I don’t want to change my swing at all, so (I’m) trying not to think about that.”
The Orioles filled in their empty roster spot by calling up Ryan Eades from Triple-A Norfolk, but he did not play.
Michael Brosseau homered for the Rays’ lone run. It was his sixth homer this season, and five have come against the Orioles.
Tampa Bay’s Avisail Garcia returned the lineup after being activated. He had been on the injured list due to a right oblique strain and stayed only 10 days.
Garcia went 0-for-4 batting fourth on a night when the Rays couldn’t do much on offense against Means. Tampa Bay hopes he gives the team a boost moving forward.
“We missed his presence in the lineup,” Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash told MLB.com before the game. “(He’s) certainly a veteran guy that has a lot of good numbers here in this ballpark and has hit well against the Orioles. We’ll insert him right back in there. He’s having a good year.”
Tampa Bay also sent outfielder Guillermo Heredia to Triple-A Durham, and recalled right-hander Austin Pruitt from Durham. The Rays sent Aaron Slegers to Durham after he earned his first career save in Friday’s win.
Jose Alvarado was the opener and took the loss Saturday, but Cash told the media afterwards that Alvarado said he had elbow problems and is now headed to the injured list. The Tampa Bay Times reported he’ll have an MRI on Monday, and that Diego Castillo (2-6, 3.44 ERA) will serve as the opener Sunday.
Castillo is 0-1 with a 4.76 ERA in six games (one start) in his career versus Baltimore. Jalen Beeks is expected to come in behind him and pitch at least a few innings.
Dylan Bundy (5-13, 5.03) starts for the Orioles and is coming off one of his best efforts this season. He held Kansas City to one run in seven innings on Tuesday but came away with a no-decision.
Bundy has a 4-6 career mark with a 6.39 ERA against Tampa Bay in 13 appearances (12 starts).
–Field Level Media