MLB Predictions 2012: New York Yankees vs. Baltimore Orioles

The New York Yankees (77-60) and Baltimore Orioles (77-60) will continue their four-game American League East series on Friday night at Camden Yards, with the first pitch scheduled for 7:05 ET

New York Yankees at Baltimore Orioles

The Baltimore Orioles are getting hot at the right time

New York tried to rally at the end of Thursday’s series opener against Baltimore, but ultimately suffered a 10-6 setback.  The Yankees pitching staff has underperformed since the All-Star break, which includes allowing the Orioles to hit six home runs on Thursday night.  “They’re playing with a lot of confidence,” commented Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez.  The club is still 10-5 inside this ballpark since the start of the 2011 campaign, but are 7-8 in this year’s season series overall.  New York is 29-20 versus left-handed starters, while the “over” is 26-23 in those contests.

Yankees starting pitcher Phil Hughes (13-12, 4.18 ERA) has alternated wins and losses over his last five outings, coming off an 8-3 setback to the Orioles at home last time out, giving up five runs and eight hits over five frames.  The right-hander is 3-8 with a 5.03 ERA in 12 road starts, surrendering 11 home runs in 68 combined innings.  In 16 career games (13 starts) versus the Orioles, Hughes has compiled a 5-4 record and 5.27 ERA, including a 1-2 mark and 5.40 ERA in three efforts this year.

Baltimore has won 10 of its last 13 games, while also proving victorious in eight of its last 11 in this AL East series.  The Orioles were led offensively by outfielder Adam Jones, who hit his 28th home run of the season, with 11 of those tying or giving the team the lead.  The All-Star outfielder is 8 for 17 with two big flies in his last four games.  Catcher Matt Wieters has been slumping for nearly a month, but comes alive versus the Bronx Bombers, hitting safely in all 15 games he’s appeared in the series.  Baltimore is 38-30 at home this season.

Orioles starting pitcher Wei-Yin Chen (12-8, 3.79 ERA) has led the club to victory in five of his last seven outings, but comes off a 4-3 setback on the road to the Yankees, allowing four runs (three earned) and four hits over 6.2 innings.  The left-hander is 6-4 with a 3.45 ERA in 14 home appearances, surrendering 12 home runs in 86 combined frames.  In three career games versus the Yankees, Chen has compiled a 1-1 record and 3.26 ERA, with hitters batting .208 against him.

Sports bettors will likely back the Orioles due to their 8-3 record versus right-handers at home, while the Yankees have dropped Hughes’ last five road starts.

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