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Orioles Review and Preview: Rays, White Sox

The good news is that the Orioles have been swept only once in their last eight series. The bad news is they haven't won any of those series either. But games like last night's series finale against the Tampa Bay Rays are nice in that they show that the team hasn't completely packed it in for the season.

Baltimore's bats backed rookie starter Brian Matusz, compiling eight runs to edge the Rays, 8-7. Brian Roberts hit a grand slam and Nolan Reimold chipped in a three-run shot of his own as the Orioles again staved off a sweep.

Despite dropping the first two games at Tropicana Field, the O's were able to stay close, losing, 5-4, in Tuesday's series opener while receiving a quality start from rookie Chris Tillman in Wednesday's 3-1 defeat.

Sadly, this is what Baltimore's season has come to, tallying moral victories rather than actual victories, a sentiment articulated by Roberts:

"This may sound bad, but we're not too focused on wins and losses. They are what they are right now. Certainly you don't want to lose, but what I'm saying is we're playing good games and you want to win."

With a team as young as Baltimore's that has to play in a division as tough as the American League East, small victories may be the only ones that can be counted on.

With this in mind, the Orioles head to Chicago to take on the White Sox, one of four AL teams the O's are .500 or better against (somehow Baltimore is 11-7 against the NL East) at 3-3.

The White Sox are 2½ games behind the AL Central-leading Detroit Tigers and will be starting Maryland native Gavin Floyd in Game 1, John Danks in Game 2 and Mr. Perfect: Mark Buehrle in Sunday's series finale. All three of those pitchers have won at least 10 games or more (Buehrle has 11 wins) while none of Baltimore's starters have more than seven wins -- Game 1 starter Jeremy Guthrie and injured rookie Brad Bergesen. Rookies David Hernandez (4-5) and Jason Berken (2-11) will follow Guthrie as the team looks to win consecutive games for the first time this month and just the second time since the all-star break.

By CJ Holley  |  August 21, 2009; 1:36 PM ET
Categories:  Orioles , Rays , White Sox  | Tags: Baltimore Orioles, Talking Behind Their Back, chicago white sox, tampa bay rays  
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Matusz looked outstanding last night. Probably wishes he could have that one pitch back but he was on pace to strike out 10. Beast.

Posted by: lavar609 | August 21, 2009 4:22 PM | Report abuse

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