MLB Picks 2012: Baltimore Orioles vs. New York Mets

The Baltimore Orioles (39-27) and New York Mets (35-32) will open up a three-game interleague series on Monday night at Citi Field, with the first pitch scheduled for 7:10 ET

Baltimore Orioles at New York Mets

New York Mets SP R.A. Dickey has been masterful with his knuckle ball this year

Baltimore has won seven of its last eight games, and enters this series with a 9-3 record against National League opponents.  “We’re just trying to win each game,” stated Orioles outfielder Adam Jones.  The Orioles have combined to score 47 runs over their last nine games, but the “over” is just 5-4 in those contests.  It’s been an impressive run when considering the club has been playing without outfielder Nick Markakis, who would normally hit No. 3 in the order, but is on the 15-day disabled list with a right wrist injury.  Baltimore is 28-21 against right-handed starters this season.

Orioles starting pitcher Jake Arrieta (3-8, 5.89 ERA) snapped a personal four-game losing streak in notching a 7-1 home win over the Pittsburgh Pirates last time out, giving up one run and seven hits over seven frames.  The right-hander is 1-3 with a 4.63 ERA in six road outings, but has surrendered just two home runs in 35 frames.  Arrieta will be facing the Mets for the first time in his career.

New York scored just five runs in getting swept by the Cincinnati Reds in three games over the weekend, including a 3-1 setback on Sunday afternoon.  “We’re sputtering a little bit offensively,” commented Mets third baseman David Wright.  He came into the contest ranking fifth in the majors with a .357 batting average, while sitting second with a .461 on-base percentage.  The club has lost a season-high four games in a row in front of the home fans, but has going 27-17 against right-handed starters during the 2012 MLB season.

Mets starting pitcher R.A. Dickey (10-1, 2.20 ERA) has led the team to eight consecutive wins, including a 9-1 road victory over the Tampa Bay Rays last time out, giving up an unearned run and one hit in going the distance.  The right-hander has compiled a perfect 5-0 record and 1.45 ERA in six home outings, as opposing hitters are batting just .184 against him.  In six career games (three starts) versus the Orioles, Dickey is 1-2 with a 4.07 ERA, including a 5-1 road win in his last effort on June 11, 2010.

Bettors will likely back the Mets due to their 8-0 record in Dickey’s last eight efforts versus AL foes, while the Orioles are 0-7 in Arrieta’s last seven starts as an underdog of +110 to +150.

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