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Orioles, with fingers crossed about injury, take on Marlins


The Baltimore Orioles have so many things to be happy about as they take aim at a series sweep of the visiting Miami Marlins on Sunday afternoon

But there also is one big concern for the Orioles, who rallied from four runs down to secure their seventh consecutive victory on Saturday night

Center fielder Cedric Mullins departed the eventual 6-5 victory with what has been called right quadriceps tightness.

“We’ll check on it (Sunday),” Orioles manager Brandon Hyde said. “We’re hoping we caught a break there. Hopefully, he’s OK.

Mullins has at least one hit in five of his past six games and a five-game RBI streak. He returned to action on June 24 after missing the entire month with a right groin strain and seemed to be getting back to form.

“Not easy to do — to miss a month and then come back,” Hyde said. “Kind of finding his way.”

The good news for the Orioles is they’ve secured their first series win against the Marlins in 23 years

As much as that’s a bit of an obscure note, the Orioles have put a winning formula clearly on display. They tend to find timely hitting and don’t mind relying on what has been impressive contributions from a bunch of relievers. Still, getting to the back end of the bullpen is the key

“That’s something we can improve on, those middle innings, once the starter leaves,” Hyde said.

Miami will try to avoid its third three-game skid since May 16-18 when it lost three straight to the Washington Nationals.

“First and foremost, it starts with pitching,” Marlins manager Skip Schumaker said. “We know what winning looks like. It’s just the little things, the details.

The Orioles will go with right-hander Kyle Bradish (5-4, 3.32 ERA) as their starting pitcher in the series finale. He hasn’t pitched since firing six shutout innings July 6 in a road game against the New York Yankees

Bradish, who has never faced the Marlins in his two seasons, has won three of his past four decisions

The Marlins had 11 hits Saturday. Four came from Luis Arraez, who boosted his batting average to .386

The more encouraging part for Miami might have been third baseman Jean Segura’s 3-for-4 performance. He was batting .197 on July 3 but now has multi-hit outings in four of the past five games.

“He’s going to hit,” Schumaker said. “I think he’s going to be more of a threat the second half.”

Miami’s starting pitcher will be left-hander Steven Okert (3-0, 2.43) in what will be his first career start after 201 relief appearances. So this shapes up as a bullpen day for the Marlins as Okert hasn’t posted more than two innings in any of his 37 outings this season

Okert is 0-1 with a 5.40 ERA all-time against Baltimore.

In Saturday’s game, he threw 1 1/3 hitless innings and struck out three.

–Field Level Media


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