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Series Preview: 5/12-5/13 Tampa Bay Rays @ Baltimore Orioles

5/12 Andy Sonnanstine vs. Mark Hendrickson (7:05 SS)

5/13 Jeff Niemann vs. Bradley Bergesen (7:05 SS)

Another two-game series? Fantastic. May as well start doing home-and-homes on back-to-back nights.

Hendrickson's dexterity likely acts as a presage to the Rays scoring few runs. The oddest thing about Hendrickson is his career strand rate is only 65.2%. League average is usually 70-72%, so Hendrickson is almost always an outlier near the bottom of the totem pole. In fact,  only two times has Hendrickson finished a season leaving 70% of his runners on the paths, 2002 - his rookie season - and 2006 - when he convinced people he was turning it around - the Rays then sold high on Lurch, along with Toby Hall, acquiring Jae Seo, Dioner Navarro, and Justin Ruggiano. So naturally Hendrickson's strand rate is 66.3% despite 2.39 homers, 4.1 walks per nine, and a BABIP of .340.

Bergesen throws a fastball (88-92), slider, and change-up yet strikes just about nobody out. He does generate a fair number of groundballs to be effective. In fact, he's pretty much Nick Blackburn, which is awful, if recent history holds true. Hopefully the Rays will avoid a case of triskaidekaphobia.

C Gregg Zaun/Chad Moeller

1B Aubrey Huff

2B Brian Roberts

3B Melvin Mora

SS Cesar Izturis

LF Joey Gathright/Felix Pie

CF Adam Jones

RF Nick Markakis

DH Ty Wigginton

With the exception of the injured Luke Scott, this is pretty much the same lineup that we've already seen plenty of times before. Hot question of the next few weeks; where does Zaun end up after Matt Wieters is promoted? The Bronx? The Bay? The bench? Zaunbie Nation inquires.

Pre-Boston: 37%

Post-Boston: 37%