Blue Jays-Orioles Preview

Jo-Jo Reyes ended one of the longest droughts in major league

history in impressive fashion his last time out. Having cooled off

since their four-game win streak, the Toronto Blue Jays could use

another strong performance from their left-hander to get back on

track.

The Blue Jays will try to get Reyes’ help to record their 22nd

win in 29 games against the Baltimore Orioles on Sunday at Camden

Yards.

After tying a major league record with 28 straight winless

starts, Reyes recorded his first complete game in Monday’s 11-1

rout of Cleveland and snapped an 0-13 skid.

“It was just an awesome game,” Reyes said. “I guess this was the

way to do it if I had to choose.”

The left-hander scattered eight hits and wasn’t hurt by four

walks during his first win since June 13, 2008. He also lowered his

ERA to 3.12 over his last seven outings after posting a 6.20 ERA in

his first four this season.

“Everybody talks about getting the win but people don’t realize

that he’s been out there and he’s been pitching great for us.

Having quality starts and giving us opportunities (to win),”

catcher J.P. Arencibia told the team’s website.

Reyes (1-4, 4.15 ERA) has never faced the Orioles (26-30) but

would appear to have another chance to win with the Blue Jays

(29-29) having dominated the series of late. Toronto, though,

couldn’t hold a two-run lead Saturday as Mark Reynolds’

sixth-inning grand slam gave Baltimore a 5-3 victory.

Each of the previous eight series between the teams had ended in

a sweep with the Blue Jays claiming six of those. Toronto was swept

in its previous trip to Baltimore from Sept 13-15.

“With the way I’ve been swinging the bat, I’ve been struggling a

little bit and I was trying to barrel the ball. The home run was a

bonus,” said Reynolds, who is hitting .189.

While Reyes will try to build on a long-awaited win, Jeremy

Guthrie (2-7, 3.24) will try to help his team record consecutive

victories for the first time since winning a season-high five

straight to end its previous homestand May 26.

The right-hander, though, has dropped seven of eight decisions

and took the loss in a 3-2 defeat in Seattle on Tuesday. Guthrie

yielded three singles through his first seven innings but his error

opened the door to a three-run eighth.

“Jeremy is a Gold Glove candidate every year. So when he doesn’t

catch the ball, you very seldom fault him,” manager Buck Showalter

told the team’s website.

Guthrie’s chances of bouncing back with a win don’t appear

promising as he’s 1-6 in his last 11 starts against the Blue Jays

and 0-3 with a 3.98 ERA in his past six matchups.

Baltimore has scored two runs or fewer in seven of Guthrie’s 11

starts this season, managing none four times.

The Orioles have committed an error in five consecutive games

and their 38 are among the most in the AL this season.