The Orioles returned from the All-Star Break with a series against the Tampa Bay Rays on the road in St. Petersburg.
Game One: Orioles: 4, Rays: 3
Yovani Gallardo opened up the second half for the Orioles with a moderately reasonable start. Gallardo went five innings allowing three runs on eight hits while striking out two but walking four.
Pedro Alvarez had himself a big game by hitting a solo home run in the third inning and an RBI double in the fifth inning. The big blast in the game, however, came from Jonathan Schoop. With the game tied 3-3, Schoop mashed a home run to left field to give the Orioles a 4-3 lead, which they would hold onto for the remainder of the game.
Game Two: Orioles: 2, Rays: 1
In another one run game, the Orioles sent out Chris Tillman, who pitched very well. Tillman went seven innings allowing one run on four hits despite only striking out three but also walking three.
As for the O’s offense on the day, J.J. Hardy provided the only spark the Orioles would need in the game with a two run home run in the second inning.
Game Three: Rays: 5, Orioles: 2
Orioles fans have waited a long time to hear the words “Dylan Bundy is starting today” and it finally happened on Sunday. Unfortunately for Bundy, it did not go as well as he may have wanted it to. Bundy was only able to go 3 1/3 innings allowing four runs on five hits while striking out four and walking three. His main problem was allowing home runs, of which he allowed three.
Donnie Hart made his Major League debut in the game for the Orioles and went 2/3 of an inning with allowing no base runners and getting a strike out.
As for the Orioles offense, it did not get the message that it needed to help the pitching a bit more today. The only runs the Orioles got on the day came from a Manny Machado sacrifice fly in the first inning and a Pedro Alvarez home run in the sixth inning.
Despite a poor showing in the series finale, the Orioles walk away with a series win once again against the Rays and remain two games up in the American League East going into a tough four game series against the Yankees.
As for the starters for that series, things will kick off with Kevin Gausman going up against Ivan Nova followed by Vance Worley and Nathan Eovaldi in game two. Yovani Gallardo will start game three for the O’s with Michael Pineda going for the Yankees and Chris Tillman facing off against C.C. Sabathia to finish up the series.