Where: Minute Maid Park, Houston, Texas
Chris Tillman aims to win his sixth consecutive start when the Baltimore Orioles visit the Houston Astros on Tuesday in the opener of a three-game series. Tillman has a 1.62 ERA during the stretch and allowed one run or fewer in three of the five outings.
Tillman has helped the Orioles win 10 of their last 14 games and Baltimore possesses the best record in the American League. The Orioles opened a nine-game road trip by winning two of three against the Los Angeles Angels but were routed 10-2 on Sunday. Houston has lost four consecutive games and scored just five runs in the span as it continues to experience an underachieving season. The Astros were expected to contend for their second consecutive playoff berth but instead are saddled with the second-worst record in the American League.
PITCHING MATCHUP: Orioles RH Chris Tillman (6-1, 2.61 ERA) vs. Astros RH Doug Fister (4-3, 4.22)
Tillman has pitched six or more innings in six consecutive starts and has given up just 26 hits in 39 1/3 innings during the stretch. This will be Tillman’s third road start of the season and he is 1-1 with a 4.50 ERA away from home compared to 5-0 with a 2.04 ERA at home. Tillman is 2-2 with a 2.45 ERA in four starts against the Astros and has handled Jose Altuve (2-for-11) and George Springer (1-for-9).
Fister has won three consecutive decisions and has a 3.08 ERA over his last four starts to overcome a rocky start. He also has pitched six or more innings in each of his last six outings and issued just four walks over his past four starts after giving up a career-worst seven against Seattle on April 25. Fister is 4-2 with a 4.63 ERA in eight career appearances (seven starts) against the Orioles and has struggled with Pedro Alvarez (5-for-9, one homer) and Chris Davis (5-for-13, two homers).
1. Orioles 3B Manny Machado went 0-for-8 with six strikeouts in the final two games of the Angels’ series and has gone hitless in six of his last nine games while buried in a 4-of-36 rut.
2. Houston DH/C Evan Gattis is 8-for-22 with three homers over the past six games.
3. Baltimore C Matt Wieters is 13-of-28 with three homers and eight RBIs over his last eight contests.
PREDICTION: Orioles 6, Astros 3