MLB Game Preview - Orioles v Blue Jays

 
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3
Final 1 2 3   4 5 6   7 8 9   R H E
Baltimore2 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 370
Toronto0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 160
1
  W: K. Gausman (4-7)   L: J. Biagini (2-7)   S: B. Brach (14)
4:07 PM PT5:07 PM MT6:07 PM CT7:07 PM ET19:07 ET23:07 GMT7:07 4:07 PM MST6:07 PM EST6:37 PM VEN3:07 UAE (+1)6:07 PM CT, June 27, 2017
Rogers Centre, Toronto, Ontario  Attendance: 40,606

Orioles look to continue road momentum vs. Blue Jays

TORONTO -- The Baltimore Orioles arrived in Toronto after winning their first road series since April.

The Orioles will try to make it two straight road series victories when they play a three-game set against the Blue Jays, starting Tuesday night.

Both teams have been struggling, yet are a winning streak away from climbing back into playoff contention.

The Orioles (37-38) used a three-run ninth inning to defeat the Tampa Bay Rays 8-5 Sunday in the finale of the three-game series at Tropicana Field after the teams had split the first two games. The Orioles are 5-5 in their past 10 games are fourth in the American League East.

The Blue Jays (36-39) are returning home from a 3-4 trip after avoiding a three-game sweep at the hands of the Kansas City Royals with an 8-2 victory Sunday afternoon at Kauffman Stadium. The Blue Jays, fifth in the AL East, are 4-6 in their past 10 games.

The Orioles will start right-hander Kevin Gausman against Blue Jays right-hander Joe Biagini (2-6, 4.43 ERA) on Tuesday.

The Orioles had not won a road series since April 18-20 when they took two of three from the Reds at Cincinnati. After taking the series in Tampa Bay, Baltimore is 13-24.

"It's been that long," asked catcher Caleb Joseph when it was mentioned. "Times goes by quickly so you don't recognize that you're that deep into not winning a road series."

Joseph had three hits Sunday.

"This was a really nice win for us," he said. "Come from behind. Out to an early lead, couldn't hold it and came back and really fought. A good rubber match. I thought the bullpen had a really nice game today, and we got some clutch hits."

The Orioles bullpen should be set up well for the Toronto series. A seven-inning start by Dylan Bundy Saturday and the day off Monday helped that situation.

"It's a byproduct of the starting pitching and (Bundy's) outing (Saturday)," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "We had people available. We didn't have to stretch everybody out.

"I had Mychal (Givens) if I needed, if Brad (Brach) got stretched out." Brad was going to pitch regardless. It all revolves around the starting pitching (Saturday). It allows us to do that, especially with the off day.

Brach pitched two innings Sunday to earn the win.

The Blue Jays are facing an important part of the schedule with AL East rival Boston Red Sox following the Orioles into the Rogers Centre. The Blue Jays visit the New York Yankees for three games next week before returning home to play the Houston Astros before the All-Star break.

"It's not going to be do-or-die type of baseball, but it's definitely going to be a good stretch of games heading into the break where we could make up some ground," said Blue Jays right fielder Jose Bautista, who hit a two-run homer and had four RBIs Sunday. "And we've been playing good; we just need to continue to minimize the mistakes and figure out a way each day to claw ourselves into the lead of the game and hopefully finish it off. We just need to keep doing what we're doing."

The Blue Jays are 10-12 in June after an 18-10 May helped them recover from an 8-17 April.

"There's been ups and downs, but after a tough first month. I think, overall, our record has been pretty good," Bautista said. "We've had to battle a lot of things. Guys going down, still, and things like that. But, for the most part guys are healthy and we just got to get in a groove where we're playing together and everybody's doing what they're capable of doing and the machine is running on all cylinders. And hopefully we get to do that here, especially down the stretch."

The Blue Jays have had nine cracks at reaching the .500 mark in wins and losses, but failed each time and eventually dropped to four games below .500 during the trip before winning Sunday.

Gausman is 0-3 with a 9.20 ERA in his past three starts and is looking for his first win Tuesday since May 31. He has an 8.02 ERA in four June starts.

He is 1-0 with a 2.60 ERA in three starts against the Blue Jays this season and, in his career, he is 3-3 with a 3.90 ERA in 15 career games (10 starts) against them. He is 1-3 with a 4.89 ERA in nine career games (six starts) at the Rogers Centre.

Biagini is coming off a win June 21 against the Texas Rangers when he allowed seven hits and four runs in 5 2/3 innings. It was his second win of the season and his first since May 12. In the six starts in between (May 17-June 16), he was 0-5 with a 6.14 ERA.

This will be his first career start against the Orioles. He has allowed three hits and no runs in 4 2/3 innings in four relief appearances against them this season. He is 0-1 with a 2.45 ERA in 12 career relief appearances against the Orioles.

Biagini was moved from the bullpen to the rotation because of injuries to other starters and in his nine career major-league starts, all this season, he is 2-5 with a 4.91 ERA.

Updated June 26, 2017

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