The Rays continue to roll, and they find themselves on the verge of 30 wins entering Tuesday’s matchup with the Orioles. Can Baltimore – with rookie starter Grayson Rodriguez on the mound – respond after three consecutive losses? The Rays are road favorites at -125 on the moneyline?
Let’s make predictions for Tuesday’s game and break down why it’s still too risky to bet against the Rays.
Rays vs. Orioles Prediction
The one recent Rays loss was a game I picked them to win comfortably — the middle game of three against the Yankees. It still doesn’t feel safe enough to go against Tampa in this spot.
Many speculated when the Rays signed Eflin that they’d unlock him the way they do with so many other pitchers, and he’s beginning to look unlocked. Coming off an outing of seven shutout innings and 10 strikeouts, Eflin has great command right now and should be in position for an extended outing against a struggling offense.
Baltimore badly needs Adley Rutschman and other key bats to get going. Grayson Rodriguez has been hit or miss lately. Could home runs be a problem against a power-heavy Rays team? His last start indicates it could be.
The Orioles might have the bullpen advantage with Tampa having a couple key injuries to its unit, but it won’t matter unless Rodriguez turns in a better than expected start against a scorching hot lineup. Rays -125 has enough value to be the pick here.
Rays vs. Orioles Prediction: Rays -130
Rays vs. Orioles Odds
The Rays enter as slight road favorites at -125 on the moneyline. The over/under is 9 runs.
This is a matchup of two offenses with pop, but the difference in this line is Zach Eflin. The former Phillies starter is coming off his best outing of the young season and seems to be finding his groove in Tampa. Grayson Rodriguez is a riskier pitcher to trust as he gets settled in the majors.
Rays vs. Orioles Key Matchups
Here are the key matchups that could decide Rays vs. Orioles.
Rays’ Power vs. Grayson Rodriguez
Rodriguez’s last start was so disappointing because he was coming off back-to-back scoreless outings and appeared to have turned a corner. He went from allowing zero home runs in two starts to giving up three against a light-hitting Royals team. Was that just a hiccup, or is he still going to need time to settle in?
The Rays won’t give Rodriguez much time to figure it out. They’re leading the league in home runs, and it’s not just their core bats. Josh Lowe and Luke Raley (15 combined HRs) both homered to take down the Orioles on Monday night.
Can Rodriguez actually hold down this Tampa lineup after struggling so much with home runs against Kansas City?
Adley Rutschman vs. Zach Eflin
The Orioles had one of the best offenses in baseball early in the season, largely the result of Adley Rutschman’s dominance. Some hitters have stepped it up lately, including Anthony Santander, but Rutschman’s recent slide has made Baltimore an entirely different team.
The young catcher enters Tuesday’s game 0 for his last 18 and in desperate need of a breakthrough. It doesn’t help that fellow former top respect Gunnar Henderson has been brutal of late (and all season).
The Orioles’ chances to beat one of the best teams in baseball are much slimmer if Rutschman can’t get going, and for a player who relies so much on patience at the plate, he’ll have to do so against a pitcher with great control and plenty of momentum in Eflin.
Rays vs. Orioles Starting Lineups
Rays Starting Lineup
1B Yandy Diaz R
SS Wander Franco S
LF Randy Arozarena R
2B Brandon Lowe L
DH Harold Ramirez R
3B Isaac Paredes R
RF Josh Lowe L
C Christian Bethancourt R
CF Jose Siri R
Orioles Starting Lineup
CF Cedric Mullins L
C Adley Rutschman S
1B Ryan Mountcastle R
RF Anthony Santander S
3B Gunnar Henderson L
LF Austin Hays R
2B Adam Frazier L
SS Jorge Mateo R
DH Ramon Urias R