Orioles turn to Bundy to get even vs. Rays (Jul 01, 2017)

BY AP • July 1, 2017

BALTIMORE -- Starting pitching has been the biggest problem for the Baltimore Orioles throughout the season, except when Dylan Bundy takes the mound.

Bundy will start on Saturday when the Orioles meet Tampa Bay at 4:05 p.m. ET in the second game of this weekend series. The right-hander will take on Jake Odorizzi from the Rays.

Bundy (8-6, 3.73 ERA) has been the lone consistent starting pitcher for Baltimore (39-40) this season. He's posted quality starts in 14 of his 16 games and playing a big role in helping the Orioles remain in contention in the American League East.

Although Bundy (1-1, 5.40 career ERA vs. the Rays) has struggled at times in the past month, he's bounced back each time afterward. He earned the win in his last start -- against the Rays (42-40) last Saturday -- by allowing three runs on five hits in seven innings.

The Orioles are trying to bounce back from a tough 6-4 loss in 10 innings Friday. They were one strike away from winning in the ninth before the Rays rallied with two outs to tie the game and then won it in the 10th.

"It was a good baseball game except we lost," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "It looked we were going to be able to manage something out of not a whole lot of offense."

Odorizzi (4-3, 4.00 ERA) has had problems with home runs this season. He's tied a club record by giving up homers in 11 straight appearances.

In his last start, Odorizzi allowed two homers and four runs on seven hits in 5 1/3 innings versus the Orioles this past Sunday. The right-hander got a no-decision as the Orioles rallied late for a victory.

Manager Kevin Cash said the team has been working with Odorizzi (3-4, 5.26 career against Baltimore) on his mechanics in recent days.

"It looks like he's kind of opening up and flying off a little bit, which is very, very normal for a lot of pitchers in this league to do," Cash said. "He's trying to make that perfect pitch. We have all the confidence in the world that (he) will make the adjustments that he needs."

The Orioles made two moves before Friday's game, putting right-hander Stefan Crichton on the disabled list (retroactive to June 27, due to a shoulder sprain). They called up right-hander Miguel Castro to replace Crichton.

Catcher Welington Castillo returned to the Baltimore lineup after missing Thursday's win in Toronto because he injured his left knee when falling on the stairs but actually told Showalter during that game that he could play if needed.

Zach Britton is closer to returning from the disabled list. He threw a shutout inning at Class-A Frederick on Friday and should pitch Monday with Triple-A Norfolk. If Britton is fine after that, then he should return to the active roster on July 5, which will give the Orioles a big boost.

For Tampa Bay, second baseman Tim Beckham came out in the 10th inning of Friday's game -- he was pinch-hit for -- due to an ankle that's bothering him. He's likely considered day-to-day.

The Rays also made a minor move on Friday. They had optioned infielder Daniel Robertson to Triple-A Durham a few days ago but instead placed him on the 10-day disabled list due to neck spasms. The move was retroactive to June 26.

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