The Washington Nationals will host the Baltimore Orioles this week to renew their Beltway series rivalry. These two interleague rivals will be playing on Wednesday night for game two of their three game series. The Orioles fell to the Nationals 9-7 in the series opener at Nationals Park.
These two teams may be rivals on the field, but the franchises are heading in complete different directions. The Baltimore Orioles currently have the worst record in Major League Baseball, and appear to be heavy sellers at the trade deadline. The Washington Nationals appear to be playoff contenders this year, but still trail the Braves in the National League East. The Washington Nationals are -220 over the Orioles in game two of the series.
Orioles Struggling to Score
The Baltimore Orioles have had problems all season long on the offensive side of the ball. The Orioles rank dead last in all of baseball in total runs, scoring just 248 runs so far this season. Baltimore also ranks near the bottom of the league in team batting average, hitting just .228 as a team. The Orioles managed to score six runs in the series opener, but it wasn’t enough to beat the Nationals.
The one player who hasn’t struggled for the Orioles is shortstop Manny Machado. Machado leads the team in virtually all offensive categories, and is having one of his best years of his career. The All-Star shortstop will be a hot commodity at the trade deadline in July, and he could help a team reach the playoffs when traded.
Harper Continues to Impress
Bryce Harper continues to prove that he is one of the best players in the Major Leagues. Harper leads the National League in home runs with 19, and also leads his team in runs batted in with 46. Harper is playing in his final year of his current contract, and is setting himself up to make a ton of money in free agency.
Gio Gonzalez will make the start for the Nationals in game two of this three game series. The veteran left hander is having another very solid season for Washington. Gonzalez is 6-3 with an impressive 3.01 ERA so far in 2018. Gonzalez should be able to easily navigate through the struggling Orioles lineup on Wednesday night.
Nationals Beat Rivals Again
The Baltimore Orioles are a bad baseball team right now, and they will be even worse if and when they decide to trade Machado. Baltimore appears to be years away from competing again in the American League East, but should receive a great package of prospects when they trade their star. Baltimore scored 7 runs in the series opener, but lack the consistency needed to win games.
Washington came into this series suffering through a four game losing streak, but the Orioles are the perfect team to bounce back against. The Nationals know that if they are going to take back control of the NL East, they must beat the teams they are supposed to. The Nationals will do just that on Wednesday night, and will win their second straight against their rivals. Bet the Washington Nationals -220 over the Baltimore Orioles.
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