Toronto Blue Jays right-hander Jose Berrios will look to continue his dominance of the Orioles when he starts against them Thursday night in the finale of a key three-game American League East series in Baltimore.
Berrios (9-8, 3.39 ERA) is 10-0 with a 2.66 ERA and one complete-game shutout in 13 career starts against the Orioles. Most recently, he threw 7 2/3 scoreless innings in a win at Camden Yards on June 14.
Berrios has allowed three earned runs or less in seven of his past eight starts, though the Blue Jays have gone only 4-3 in those seven games.
The last time out, Berrios pitched 5 2/3 scoreless innings in a no-decision against the Cincinnati Reds on Friday. He allowed one hit while striking out eight and walking four as Toronto lost 1-0.
“Sometimes we think about that, but sometimes we don’t know how the game is going because we are so locked in trying to execute pitches,” Berríos said. “No matter what, if we are tied, winning or losing, we have to make pitches and compete. That’s what I did tonight.”
Berrios will be opposed on Thursday by right-hander Kyle Gibson (12-7, 4.97). In two starts on the Orioles‘ recent West Coast trip, Gibson was 1-1 with an 11.32 ERA. He picked up a win against the Oakland Athletics in his most recent start on Friday despite allowing four runs on nine hits over five innings. He struck out six without a walk.
“I think overall I’d like to be pitching better,” Gibson said. “I’m going to keep working, keep working on things in the bullpen and try to clean up some of those innings.”
Gibson has a 5.95 ERA since June 6. He is 7-2 with a 4.23 ERA in 13 career starts against the Blue Jays. Gibson is 2-0 with a 1.38 ERA vs. Toronto this season, having allowed only two runs in 13 innings.
Baltimore broke open a close game Wednesday night with a five-run eighth inning in a 7-0 win over Toronto. Anthony Santander hit a pair of solo homers in his return after missing three games with lower back pain and leads the team with 23 home runs.
“Nice to have him back in the lineup,” Orioles manager Brandon Hyde said. “It’s probably something I’m going to have to monitor. As you can tell, he makes a huge impact in our lineup when he’s in there. Great night from him, offensively.
Dean Kremer pitched six scoreless innings for the Orioles after scheduled starter Jack Flaherty was scratched because he wasn’t feeling well. Ryan Mountcastle helped Baltimore by increasing his on-base streak to 28 games.
The Orioles are 8-0-2 in their past 10 series against AL East opponents. Baltimore is 25-15 vs. teams in the division this season.
Kevin Gausman turned in a strong effort against his former team on Wednesday, but Toronto managed just five singles as the Jays saw their three-game winning streak end.
The Blue Jays trail first-place Baltimore by 8 1/2 games in the East but remain in the thick of the wild-card chase as they enter the series finale.
“Every game matters,” Gausman said. “You look at not just the AL East, but obviously the American (League) wild card, there’s five or six teams within a two- or three-game difference.”
—Field Level Media
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