MLB Morning Lineup: July 23rd, 2013

by Thom Cunningham | Posted on Tuesday, July 23rd, 2013
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Jarred Cosart

This is a quick preview of MLB’s scheduled games for Tuesday July 23rd, 2013.

Games – 16

AL Games – 7

NL Games – 8

IL Games – 1

American League Games (7):

Tampa Bay Rays (59-41) @ Boston Red Sox (60-41) – 7:10 pm

The Rays won a very close game one yesterday in large part because of their pitching staff. The Rays shutout the Boston Red Sox, who lead all of baseball in runs scored. Tampa Bay’s impressive pitching continues with Roberto Hernandez (5-10, 4.90) taking on Jon Lester (8-6, 4.58).

Surprisingly, the pitching match up does not favor Tampa Bay for a change. Lester was originally scheduled to start the final game against New York, but was bumped back to today. This is a huge game that could see a change in the AL East standings when it’s all said and done. Hernandez will have to pitch an outstanding game for the Rays to take game two from Boston.

Series score: TMB 1-0

New York Yankees (52-47) @ Texas Rangers (55-44) – 8:05 pm

The Yankees have been losing tough, close games lately. Last night’s contest was no different as the Texas pitching staff shutout the visiting Yankees, 3-0. Game two will feature Phil Hughes (4-9,  4.57) taking on Rangers’ young pitcher Alexi Ogando (4-2, 2.93).

This match up does not favor New York as Hughes has had an inconsistent 2013. Ogando has missed time this season with his last game played being the beginning of June. Ogando’s return is huge for this Rangers ball club as their pitching staff has been depleted all season long. If Ogando pitches the way he did before getting hurt, Texas should have no problem winning game two.

Series score: TEX 1-0

Baltimore Orioles (57-43) @ Kansas City Royals (45-51) – 8:10 pm

Jason Hammel (7-6, 5.24) will start game two for Baltimore after defeating the Royals pretty heavily last night. In hopes to slow the Orioles’ bats down, Kansas City will start Bruce Chen (3-0, 2.04) who has not lost yet this season.

Here, the Royals are favored on the mound with Hammel having a Jekyll and Hyde type season. Baltimore’s bats have been dominant as of lately, as the Orioles have yet to lose since the All-Star break. Baltimore needs to continue winning if they want to keep pace with Boston and Tampa Bay. The Royals’ bats look to turn things around after only recording three total runs their past two games.

Series score: BAL 1-0

Detroit Tigers (54-44) @ Chicago White Sox (39-57) – 8:10 pm

The Tigers were able to take game one after losing a series to the White Sox days before the All-Star break. Game two will show Tigers’ veteran Rick Porcello (6-6, 4.80) facing Hector Santiago (3-5, 3.30). The Indians dropped a game to Seattle, so last night’s win puts Detroit another game ahead of the tribe.

The Tigers were able to jump on Chicago’s ace last night, and will need to do the same against Santiago. Santiago has had a pretty decent season, so Detroit can’t sleep on him. The White Sox are more than capable of hitting Porcello, so whichever starter can eat up the most innings will more than likely help their ball club win this game. Detroit’s bullpen has been shaky this season, but if Porcello can hold a lead going into the seventh, they should be alright for game two.

Series score: DET 1-0

Oakland Athletics (58-41) @ Houston Astros (33-65) – 8:10 pm

Despite the Astros playing very well last night, it wasn’t enough as the Athletics won 4-3. It was a tougher game than expected for Oakland, trailing the Astros through a majority of the game. Jarrod Parker (6-6, 3.95) will start for the Athletics as he faces the young Jarred Cosart (1-0, 0.00), who only gave up two hits in his last outing.

This game should be closer then expected, given Coasrt pitches another stellar game. The Oakland lineup is a tough one to dominant though. This will be a good test for the young Cosart as he is entering his second career start. If this game is close like yesterday, Oakland will need to do a better job of getting runners home. Houston may not have the best record, but they play hard every night which is always fun to watch.

Series score: OAK 1-0

Minnesota Twins (42-54) @ Los Angeles Angels (46-51) – 10:05 pm

The Angels dropped a game to Minnesota, putting their pennant chase in a temporary delay. If the Angels want to make a move in the division they cannot afford to lose another game to Minnesota. Minnesota will start Kyle Gibson (2-2, 6.45) after the young Deduno pitched very well in game one.

Blanton actually pitched well last night, but Tommy Hanson (4-2, 5.10) will have to pitch better if the Angels want to win. The Twins’ bats are not that bad and can strike if taken for granted. Its unlikely the Twins dominate the Angels’ lineup for two straight games. If the Angels drop this series at home, their season is pretty much out of reach to win the pennant.

Series score: MIN 1-0

Cleveland Indians (52-47) @ Seattle Mariners (47-52) – 10:10 pm

The Mariners have now won seven in a row with their bats on absolute fire. One of baseball’s best slugging teams, Seattle ranks among the top in home runs hit. After posting yet anther double digit run tally, the Mariners get ready for game two with Erasmo Ramirez (0-0, 13.50) taking the mound.

Cleveland’s bats are no joke either, and on paper should dominant Ramirez. Cleveland will need a solid outing from their pitcher Zach McAllister (4-5, 3.43). McAllister is going up against a very hot Seattle lineup, in particular Justin SmoakThis is a game Cleveland should win, and need to with Detroit going up a game in the AL Central standings.

Series score: SEA 1-0

National League Games (8):

Cincinnati Reds (56-43) @ San Francisco Giants (45-53) – 7:05 pm

Tony Cingrani (3-1, 3.23) has been more than impressive for Cincinnati as he takes the mound to face Eric Surkamp (0-0, 0.00), who gets his first start of the season. The Reds absolutely destroyed the Giants in game one with both pitching and hitting.

The Giants pennant comeback was put on hold as the Reds recorded 11 total runs while shutting out the defending champions. Cincinnati has looked scary good since their series in Atlanta. This is only game one of two games these two teams will be playing today, so lineup changes for both teams are expected.

Series score: CIN 1-0

Pittsburgh Pirates (58-39) @ Washington Nationals (48-51) – 7:05 pm

The young Gerrit Cole (4-3, 3.89) will start game two for the Pirates, opposite of Nationals’ starter Taylor Jordan (0-2, 3.32). The Nationals have been struggling lately, and it showed after the Nationals fired their hitting coach Eckstein.

As the Nationals try to figure out whats wrong, the Pirates are doing everything right. All-Star Andrew McCutchen hit two home runs to help his team take an important game one. Pittsburgh has been tested late in games lately, but have come out on top. The big question for Pittsburgh going forward is the health concern of closer Jason Grilli. If Grilli is sidelined, the Pittsburgh bullpen will have to respond strong to avoid another season tank job.

Series score: PIT 1-0

Atlanta Braves (56-43) @ New York Mets (43-52) – 7:10 pm

The Mets were able to keep Atlanta off the scoreboard up until the final inning of play last night, losing 2-1. It was a great game to watch between two teams playing very good baseball. A great catch by gold glover Jason Heyward solidified a tight game one victory for the Braves as they hope to have a better day at the plate against Carlos Torres (0-1, 0.79) in game two.

Torres pitched well in his last outing, so the Braves’ bats will need to perform better than they did during game one. The Braves will start Kris Medlen (6-9, 3.64) who’s record doesn’t necessarily reflect his overall skill and production this year. Pending Torres’ performance, this game may be very similar to last night’s. The Mets have shown they can compete with almost anybody in baseball, but the Braves overall talent is just too much for New York to take the series.

Series score: ATL 1-0

San Diego Padres (44-56) @ Milwaukee Brewers (41-57) – 8:10 pm

Niether team’s starting pitcher in this match up has won a game this season. Looking for their first wins, Padres’ pitcher Tyson Ross (0-4, 3.60) battles Brewers’ pitcher Donovan Hand (0-1, 3.27) in what seems to be an unpredictable game.

The Padres’ have been swinging the bats very well lately, capitalizing on the Brewers’ starter in last game’s sixth inning. The Padres’ bullpen pitched well last game and will need a similar performance to win game two. It seems as if the Padres are starting to play with the success they found in June, while the Brewers are having tough days themselves losing former NL MVP Ryan Braun for the rest of the season.

Series score: SND 1-0

Philadelphia Phillies (49-50) @ St. Louis Cardinals (59-37) – 8:15 pm

This is the first of what should be a great three game series. To begin the series, the Phillies will start the young Jonathan Pettibone (5-3, 3.89) in face of Cardinals’ young stud Shelby Miller (9-6, 2.92). This particular game should be fun to watch as two young and successful pitchers battle it out.

With the Reds playing very well lately, it’s important the Cardinals not take Philadelphia for granted. The Phillies are a team that can hit if you’re not careful with the top of their order. This series is more important for the Phillies to win, especially with Atlanta continuing to win and the Nationals falling fast. This will be one of the more intriguing series during the week.

Three games series: July 23rd – July 25th

Next game probables: Lannan vs. Westbrook

Miami Marlins (36-61) @ Colorado Rockies (48-52) – 8:40 pm

All-Star Jose Fernandez (5-5, 2.75) gets the start for Miami as the Marlins look to take game two from Jhoulys Chacin (9-4, 3.50). Both pitchers have been performing very well this season, setting up a good match up here.

The Marlins were finally able to snap a three game skid without any runs, defeating the Rockies 3-1. The Marlins sent some guys down to the minors, so expect a different lineup and possibly result from the Marlins’ bats. Chacin has been over looked as a successful pitcher this season and can lead the Rockies to a game two victory. If there was ever a time or place for Fernandez to struggle, it would be in Colorado against a potent lineup in Colorado. Not saying Fernandez will have a bad game, but if there was any a time, it would probably be tonight.

Series score: MIA 1-0

Chicago Cubs (44-53) @ Arizona Diamondbacks (51-48) – 9:40 pm

Having two wild card spots is great because now you have teams like the Cubs actually playing hard and not giving up on the season. Chicago won a very tough game one in Arizona and look for similar success in game two.

In what is the pitching match up of the night, Cubs young All-Star Travis Wood (6-6, 2.79) battles another young All-Star Patrick Corbin (11-1, 2.35). There’s not much to say about this game other than it’s a pitching dual. Both left-handed starters have had monstrous seasons, but the edge may go to Corbin based off past run support. This should be a very close game between two future stars on the mound.

Series score: CHC 1-0

San Francisco Giants (TBD) @ Cincinnati Reds (TBD) – 10:15 pm (approx.)

Game two of a double header will feature Giant’s lefty Barry Zito (4-7, 4.88) taking on Greg Reynolds (0-0, 0.00). This is a makeup game from earlier in the year, despite the Giants being ‘on the road’.

This is quite confusing because despite playing in AT&T Park where the Giants play, the Reds will be batting the bottom innings in game two. With a double header usually comes lineup changes, so if there’s anything to expect from these two teams tonight it’s different lineups between both games.

Series score: TBD

Interleague Games (1):

Los Angeles Dodgers (51-47) @ Toronto Blue Jays (45-53) – 7:07 pm

The Dodgers look scary good right now, especially after beating Toronto 14-4 in last night’s contest. The Blue Jays hit the ball well, but as usual, their inability to get runners across home plate has hurt them again.

Game two will feature Chris Capuano (3-6, 4.63) for Los Angeles taking on Todd Redmond (1-1, 4.32) for Toronto. This pitching match up is pretty even, but if the Dodgers continue to hit the way they are then a game two victory shouldn’t be a problem. The Blue Jays can’t seem to capitalize on anything, and if they’re not careful, they could see their season fall faster than expected. It’s not all over for Toronto just yet, but a few more series like this will bury them for the year.

Series score: LAD 1-0

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Thom Cunningham
About the Author

Thom Cunningham has been writing about sports for close to eight years and is also a reporting statistician for Stats, LLC. He was a former Sports editor and radio broadcaster for Georgia Southern University football and baseball games; including work published on sites such as Bleacher Report, Football Nation and CBS Sports. Follow Thom on Twitter @HelloIAMThom

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