Detroit Tigers (Brad Penny, 0-1) at Baltimore Orioles (Chris Tillman, 0-0)
Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Baltimore, MD
Thursday, April 7, 2011, 7:05 pm Eastern, TV: MLB Network
Opening Money Line: BAL -141 / DET +121
Current Money Line: BAL -130 / DET +120
Opening Run Line: DET +1 1/2 -170 / BAL -1 1/2 +150
Current Run Line: DET +1 1/2 -165 / BAL – 1 1/2 +145
Opening Total: 9 1/2
Current Total: 9 under -115 / 9 under -105
The American League East Standings appear to be turned upside down early in the 2011 season. Baltimore and Toronto are tied for the lead with a 4-1 record, and Boston and Tampa Bay are both 0-5. The Yankees are in the middle at 3-2. Obviously, it is way to early and things can and will change in the standings. The Tigers are 2-3 this young season. Today the Orioles host the Tigers in the last game of a 3 game series. The two teams have split the first two games with Baltimore winning 5-1 on Monday, and Detroit winning 7-3 on Wednesday. The teams did not play on Tuesday.
In this rubber match, the Tigers will send Brad Penny to the mound. The veteran right-hander was shelled by the Yankees in his first start of the season, giving up 8 earned runs in only 4.1 innings pitched. He walked 4 and struck out 3 in the 10-6 loss. Penny is 1-0 against the Orioles in 2 career starts with a 7.72 ERA. The Orioles will start young right-hander Chris Tillman. He was brilliant in his first start of the season allowing no hits in six innings of work at Tampa Bay. He walked 3 and struck out 5 batters but was lifted after 101 pitches. He got a no decision as the Orioles didn’t score until the 8th inning in the 3-1 victory. Tillman is in his second year and was 4-10 last year in 24 starts with a 5.34 ERA. Tillman is 1-0 with an ERA of 3.20 in 3 career starts against the Tigers.
The Tigers are 67-102 against the money line in road games the last 3 seasons. The Tigers are 9-24 against the money line in road games after a win in the last 2 seasons. The Tigers are 11-9 in all games against the Orioles the last 3 seasons, but the O’s are 6-4 in Baltimore in those games.
Tigers second baseman Carlos Guillen (knee) and relief pitcher Joel Zumaya (elbow) are both on the 15 day disabled list. Pitcher Jose Valverde and first baseman Miguel Cabrera are both probable with illnesses. Cabrera leads the Tigers in home runs with 3, RBI’s with 6, hits with 7, and has on-base percentage of .435 to lead the team as well. Cabrera is abttign .368 so fat this season. Left fielder Brennan Boesch leads the team in batting average. He is hitting exactly .400 this young season. Catcher Alex Avila also has 6 RBI’s this season. DH Victor Martinez has 2 home runs and 3 RBI’s this season. As a team the Tigers are batting .274. They have 8 total home runs and 26 team RBI’s. The Tigers have a team ERA of 6.43 and average 7.71 strikeouts per nine innings.
Oriole pitchers Justin Duscherer (hip) and Brian Matusz (oblique) are both on the 15 day disabled list. Pitcher Jeremy Guthrie is out with pneumonia but is not on the DL yet. Left fielder Luke Scott is expected to start tonight with a groin injury. Right fielder Nick Markakis leads the Orioles in batting average hitting .353 and hits with 6. he has an on-base percentage of .400 to also lead the team. Second baseman Brian Roberts leads the Orioles with 2 home runs and 8 RBI’s. The Orioles are winning with with pitching and defense. They only have 19 runs on the season. They are batting.217 as a team. The Orioles have a team ERA of 1.80 and average 7 strikeouts per nine innings. They have only allowed 31 hits all season and 9 earned runs in 5 games.
Both these teams have veteran managers who know how to get the best of out of their players. Both Jim Leyland of the Tigers and Buck Showalter of the Orioles have been managing for 15 years or more. This should be a good early season test for both teams.
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