If the Os are going to avoid a sweep…

I put my money on Jake Arrieta in tonight’s game as the best shot for the Orioles to steal one this series. With all due respect to Wednesday’s starter Jeremy Guthrie the O’s offense faces Cy Young winner Tim Lincecum.

Considering Baltimore has a tendency to make opposing pitchers look like Cy Young Award-winners, facing Lincecum for the first time could be a fatal mix. In his last outing against Oakland, Lincecum rebounded from his recent
slide by allowing two runs on seven hits in eight innings. He also
struck out seven and walked just one batter.

Back to tonight, where Arrieta will actually hold the upper hand in terms of Major League starts. The Giants will send 27-year-old journeyman Joe Martinez to the hill for his first outing of the season while Arrieta is coming off a sparkling debut in which he held the defending World Series Champion Yankees in check.

Martinez went 3-2 with a 7.50 ERA in nine games for the Giants last season. You might remember the incident last April, when Brewers’ outfielder Mike Cameron drilled a line drive off his head. Martinez suffered a concussion and three hairline fractures to his skull, but he came back five months later. He’s tasked with tonight’s spot start.

Random fact alert: With Interleague Play and limited experience, Arrieta and Martinez will be largely unknowns to tonight’s hitters. The only Oriole who has an at-bat off Martinez is Miguel Tejada, who is 0-for-2.

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