Chris Tillman takes to the bump tonight at Tropicana Field as the Baltimore Orioles open up a series with their division rivals, the Tampa Rays. Given the fact that the O’s have lost two straight, it would stand to reason that they’re probably happy that their staff ace’s turn is coming up in the rotation. However keep in mind that Tillman will be looking to right not only the team, but himself as well following his previous outing.
Last time out, Tillman threw over 40 pitches in the first inning, and only lasted 4.2 innings. However if I’ve said if once I’ve said it a million times – pitchers will have 10 great starts, 10 poor, and 10 in the middle over the course of a season. You can throw Tillman’s last start in the poor category, but he did manage to settle down after the first inning and in effect was pulled due to a high pitch count.
Tillman will be opposed by Tampa’s Chris Archer, who the Orioles defeated back in Baltimore a few weeks ago. The Orioles also might be making a roster move prior to tonight’s game, as T.J. McFarland was scratched from his start for triple-A Norfolk last night. The Birds might be sending an infielder down to go with a 13-man pitching staff once again. McFarland was optioned in favor of Jermile Weeks on April 25th, and has served the obligatory 10-day period in the minors. We’ll know for sure later on today, but assuming this is the case the Orioles probably won’t officially make the move until just prior to game time.