Each of the past 18 meetings with the Baltimore Orioles have ended with handshakes for the New York Yankees.
Things are not going well for the Yankees, but they hope to maintain their recent dominance of Orioles starting pitching during a Friday doubleheader at Camden Yards in Baltimore.
The Yankees have won 18 straight over Baltimore, their third-longest winning streak over an opponent in team history. Their longest streaks are a 19-game run over the Philadelphia Athletics from 1938-39 and a 21-game run in 1927 over the St. Louis Browns, who became the Orioles in 1954.
New York kept its streak going in the opening week of the season when Aaron Judge homered in both games of a two-game series that was hastily produced after the Yankees had four games with the Philadelphia Phillies postponed due to coronavirus concerns.
Judge is among several prominent injured players, and the Yankees (20-16) are 4-10 in their last 14 games. Several of the losses were decided in the late innings due to a bullpen that has a 5.87 ERA in that span.
The latest was a 9-7 loss to the New York Mets on Thursday, when the Yankees held a three-run lead in the eighth but saw Aroldis Chapman allow a game-tying homer to J.D. Davis in the ninth and Albert Abreu give up a two-run, walk-off homer to Pete Alonso in the 10th.
The defeat dropped the Yankees five games behind the first-place Tampa Bay Rays and into a tie with the Toronto Blue Jays for second place in the American League East.
“I see the team as fine,” Chapman said through an interpreter. “We have a lot of talent and we have a lot of really good players. We’re going through a tough moment and I understand it’s a short season, there’s not a lot of time, but as far as our team, I think we should be able to be fine.”
Baltimore (16-20) is also winless in its past 17 home meetings with the Yankees since July 10, 2018, and 4-12 in its last 16 overall since a 7-3 win over the Washington Nationals on Aug. 15. The Orioles split a two-game series with the New York Mets this week, taking a 9-4 loss Wednesday when they stranded six runners combined in the second, third and fourth innings.
“We squandered some offensive opportunities early to get a lead there,” Baltimore manager Brandon Hyde said. “We had the right guys up.”
The Orioles lost regular cleanup hitter Renato Nunez to a hamstring injury that could keep him from playing Friday. Baltimore also has been without regular second baseman Hanser Alberto for the past two games due to a minor knee injury.
The Orioles will get their first look at Yankees prospect Deivi Garcia in one of the games.
Garcia made his major league debut in the second game of Sunday’s doubleheader against the Mets and allowed an unearned run in six innings of a 5-2 win. He threw 75 pitches, and the 21-year-old earned significant praise from Hall of Famer Pedro Martinez after the game.
The Yankees did not announce which pitcher would start the other game of the doubleheader, though rookie Mike King is a possibility. King threw 68 pitches in 3 2/3 innings in the first game of Sunday’s doubleheader.
Alex Cobb and Jorge Lopez will pitch for the Orioles, though the order is unknown.
Cobb last pitched in a 5-0 loss to Toronto on Saturday when he allowed five runs (four earned) in four innings, equaling his shortest start of the season. Cobb is 7-4 with a 2.92 ERA in 18 career appearances (17 starts) against the Yankees.
Lopez has a 6.59 ERA in four outings (one start) with Baltimore. He allowed three runs in 4 2/3 innings in a no-decision to Toronto on Sunday.
Lopez is 0-1 with a 10.13 ERA in two career starts against the Yankees.
–Field Level Media