Tonight’s Orioles – Royals Lineups

May 15, 2009 |

Tonight at 8:10pm in Kansas City, the Orioles will have the unenviable task of facing baseball’s most dominant pitcher of the early ’09 season, the Royals’ Zack Greinke.  If you haven’t heard about this kid yet… do yourself a favor, and jump out from beneath the rock you’ve been living under.

At least the O’s secured a victory in the series opener last night going into this evening’s ballgame after losing nine of their last ten on the road.  Jeremy Guthrie picked up his first win since April 11, but left the game after throwing a shaky fifth inning and 98 pitches.  Allowing the two-out rally continued to be his Achilles heel; in his last inning of work he gave up two, two-out runs after his teammates staked him to a 5-2 lead.  Fortunately he got the final out of the inning and left the game at 5-4 in favor of the O’s.  Offensively the Orioles took advantage of a sub-par outing from Gil Meche and an erratic Royal bullpen as the top of the Baltimore order provided Guthrie the run support he needed.  Brian Roberts, Cesar Izturis (batting 2nd for the day-to-day Adam Jones), Nick Markakis, and Aubrey Huff combined to score seven runs, seven hits, and seven RBI.

Adam Eaton and his 2-3 record and 7.17 ERA will oppose Greinke in tonight’s game, which is sure to receive national attention.  The 31-year old right-hander picked up a victory in his last outing, a 12-5 Oriole win over the New York Yankees.  His pitching line of 5 IP, 4 hits, 4 ER, and 2 homers surrendered won’t astound anyone, but once again, it was just good enough.  Tonight Eaton will more than likely have to be better than ‘just good enough,’ if the O’s want to be competitive in tonight’s match-up.

As mentioned above, Zack Greinke will toe the rubber in his home stadium tonight and will attempt to break the Royals’ current six-game losing streak.  In his seven times out there thus far he’s has won six times, registered four complete games, pitched 53 full innings, has struck out 58 batter, while walking only eight… and oh by the way, has only surrendered two earned runs… total.  OK, pick which adjective you like best: unreal, unbelievable, phenomenal, crazy-good, ridiculously-good, amazing, jaw-dropping… yeah, you get the idea.  In Kansas City, he’s amazingly popular right now, like in a Fernando Valenzuela way; in his last start at Kauffman Stadium the Royals drew a walk-up crowd of over 7,500 people just to see the ‘Greinke Show.’

Here are the game’s starting lineups:

Orioles

Brian Roberts – 2B
Cesar Izturis – SS
Nick Markakis – RF
Aubrey Huff – 1B
Melvin Mora – 3B
Lou Montanez – DH
Nolan Reimold – LF
Gregg Zaun – C
Felix Pie – CF

Royals

Coco Crisp – CF
David DeJesus – LF
Billy Butler – 1B
Mike Jacobs – DH
Carlos Guillen – RF
Mark Teahen – 3B
Alberto Callaspo – 2B
Miguel Olivo – C
Willie Bloomquist – SS

There were fist-bumps going on all over the O's dugout last night in KC. (Courtesy: Getty Images)

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