Yankees vs. Orioles series: A head-to-head prediction

Yankees vs. Orioles series

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After splitting the Subway Series with a 3-1 win over the New York Mets, the Yankees are heading to Camden Yards to play a three-game series against AL East Division top team Baltimore Orioles.

This series is pivotal for both of these teams. The impact of every win or loss will be felt on their rankings as well as on the rest of the division. The Orioles took advantage of the past road trip where they capitalized on taking away the first place in the East Division of the American League from the Tampa Bay Rays by defeating them in 3 of the 4 games played in that series. But fate has not been in their favor lately because the successive road series vs Philadelphia Phillies ended in back-to-back losses. However, they still occupy the first spot in AL East. The New York Yankees on the other side, are still doing adjustments aiming to improve their collective batting numbers while keeping over .500 PCT despite falling into the bottom of the division. They suffered a loss against the Colorado Rockies followed by a series sweep by the Los Angeles Angels before bouncing back with a win over the Kansas City Royals.

Depending on the outcome of this series, from the bottom to the top positions in the AL East could be shaken. The slumping Tampa Bay Rays are just 1 game behind the Orioles and now that they are playing catch-up there is not much room for bad streaks if the Orioles wish to stay in the number one spot. Also, the New York Yankees are 1.5 games behind the Boston Red Sox. Therefore, the Yankees winning this series will shrink the gap between best-positioned clubs and the Yankees, possibly advance in the power rankings to the fourth in the tough AL East and prove that is still a serious contender. Most importantly a long-awaited momentum for this struggling team that is expected to perform up to its historic baseball franchise reputation.  

The New York Yankees recorded 5 wins out of the 10 regular season games played vs. the Orioles this season. But they lost the last 2 games of the previous series in the first week of July. However, since September 2020, the Orioles have not been able to win three consecutive games (neither between series nor within a single series) over the last 50 regular season games played against the Yankees.

Anyways, the surge of the Baltimore Orioles to this date has proven the potential they have as a team and one of the main contenders to defeat in order to achieve any postseason aspirations. Considering the performance of the New York Yankees are having so far, to have a better understanding of the odds in this series let´s take a look and compare some of the stats of both teams.

Yankees vs. Orioles: The offense  

The New York Yankees will visit the Oriole Park with a team batting average of .230 (29th overall), .302 OBP (26th overall), .404 SLG (18th overall), .706 (23rd overall), while the guest Baltimore Orioles .250 AVG (16th overall), .319 (15th overall) OBP, .420 SLG (9th overall) and .739 OPS (12th overall). Evidencing the superiority in hitting and especially getting on base that has led the Orioles to have a better record this season. 

Yankees vs. Orioles: The pitching

For sure this is the category where the Yankees have sustained their record throughout this 2023 season. The solid pitching based on a 3.89 ERA ranked (9th overall), along with 1.25 WHIP (8th overall) and .233 AVG (3rd overall) over a barely decent Baltimore Orioles 4.19 ERA, along with 1.30 WHIP (19th overall) and .250 AVG (20th overall) that shows a clear advantage for the Yankees, if the Orioles batters don´t find out a way to avoid being handled by the Yankees pitchers.

Here are the already-announced pitchers to start each game:

Yankees vs. Orioles Game 1

Gerrit Cole’s basic statistics:

YearWLERAGGSSVIPSOWHIP
2023 Regular Season922.7821210129.11441.08
Career Regular Season139733.2028828801779.120741.10
Source: MLB

Gerrit Cole is set to face the Baltimore Orioles rookie starting pitcher Greyson Rodriguez. Cole´s arsenal and effectiveness keep him on the discussion ballot for the Cy Young Award. His 4-Seamer keeps making batters look bad this season and is still considered the most effective in the entire MLB.

Cole has 2.78 ERA (3rd overall) and 144 SO (5th in the American League). The Yankees ace has not been able to get a positive decision, despite throwing good outings against the Colorado Rockies and Kansas City Royals, all because of the lame support of his teammates in the early innings.

Regarding Cole’s performance against the Orioles’ batters, his numbers display successful outing against this team’s lineup:


Statcast
PlayerPAABH2B3BHRSOK%Whiff%BBBB%BASLGwOBAxBAxSLGxwOBAEVLA
 Cole, Gerrit1251163312042721.628.297.20.2840.4910.3550.250.4080.3189.112.1
Statcast
PlayerPAABH2B3BHRSOK%Whiff%BBBB%BASLGwOBAxBAxSLGxwOBAEVLA
 Mountcastle, Ryan22194100522.743.9313.60.2110.2630.2710.2140.3490.387.423.2
 Santander, Anthony21193100628.63629.50.1580.2110.2080.1460.1960.20292.311.8
 McCann, James14135301321.42017.10.3850.8460.5230.2980.5380.37388.515.4
 Hays, Austin17155300211.814.8211.80.3330.5330.4080.3170.4740.38586.3-0.7
 Urías, Ramón11115201436.422.2000.4550.9090.5780.2110.370.2478913.6
 Frazier, Adam1111510019.128000.4550.5450.4350.3360.4430.3488.74.9
 Rutschman, Adley109210022028.61100.2220.3330.2840.2250.3770.30191.228.9
 O’Hearn, Ryan991001222.222.2000.1110.4440.2230.2540.6080.35795.515.7
 Mateo, Jorge88200022523.1000.250.250.2210.3130.3670.29780.5-13.2
 Henderson, Gunnar221001000000.521.0060.3361.060.5799.537
Source: Baseballsavant

The 0.250 expected batting average is a good sign in Cole’s favor for this start, in addition to 21.6% for strikeouts and 28.2% of swing and miss strikeout rate represents the difficulties to retire Orioles’ batters at the plate in this upcoming game for the Yankees starting pitcher. Austin Hays, Gunnar Henderson, Ramon Urias, Adam Frazier, and James McCann are batters that Gerrit Cole should be concerned about because of their ability to read and make contact with his pitches.

Greyson Rodriguez’s basic statistics:

YearWLERAGGSSVIPSOWHIP
2023 Regular Season226.911212056.0661.66
Career Regular Season226.911212056.0661.66
Source: MLB

On the other side of this matchup is Greyson Rodriguez. A right-handed rookie who actually has something in common with Gerrit Cole, he relies on his 4-Seam Fastball a lot and when having good outings is not fortunate enough to get the decision.

This young pitcher will be facing the New York Yankees for the first time in his career, but that doesn’t mean he´s not capable of executing well on his duty this Friday night game homestand because of his Fastball that averages the 3-digit mark and the way he mixes the rest of pitch types of his arsenal.

Yankees vs. Orioles Game 2

Clarke Schmidt’s statistics:

YearWLERAGGSSVIPSOWHIP
2023 Regular Season664.332120099.2971.32
Career Regular Season11124.0855252170.01661.35
Source: MLB  

Clarke Schmidt will start the second game of the series against coming off back-to-back wins against the Colorado Rockies and the Kansas City Royals, this righty pitcher has kept a winning rhythm in the beginning of the second half.

His record over the 2 games he’s started after the All-star break is 2-0 with 3.86 ERA, allowing 8 H, 5 ER, 2 HR, 10 SO, .186 AVG, 0.86 WHIP within 11.2 IP.

Schmidt’s performance against the Orioles’ batters:

Statcast
PlayerPAABH2B3BHRSOK%Whiff%BBBB%BASLGwOBAxBAxSLGxwOBAEVLA
 Schmidt, Clarke7566155011621.321.4810.70.2270.3480.290.2450.4170.32491.819.6
Statcast
PlayerPAABH2B3BHRSOK%Whiff%BBBB%BASLGwOBAxBAxSLGxwOBAEVLA
 Rutschman, Adley971000444.430222.20.1430.1430.2520.1920.2290.29886.412.3
 Mountcastle, Ryan107200011028.62200.2860.2860.3150.3250.6160.43495.715.1
 Henderson, Gunnar872100112.50112.50.2860.4290.3530.4620.9990.63100.216.2
 Mateo, Jorge88100022527.8000.1250.1250.110.3140.670.41596.418.2
 Santander, Anthony9941000016.7000.4440.5560.4330.2860.3430.27393.812
 O’Hearn, Ryan55110024021.4000.20.40.2490.0890.1790.11295.346.7
 Hays, Austin880000112.513.3000000.1240.1460.11582.126.7
 Frazier, Adam763101114.318.8114.30.51.1670.6910.270.3980.34690.38.8
 McCann, James43000025071.4125000.1730.030.1010.2119941
 Urías, Ramón320000133.30133.3000.2320.1240.1240.30747.832
 McKenna, Ryan2200001500000000.010.0180.0118733
 Westburg, Jordan221100000000.510.6240.4010.5510.39391.632.5
Source: Baseballsavant

According to those numbers, if Clarke Schmidt manages to keep the pace of the game holding the Orioles batters to a low production of runs the victory will lean on the New York Yankees direction. Keeping an effective strategy against players like Adley Rustschman, Anthony Santander, Gunnar Henderson, Ryan Mountcastle, Adam Frazier, and Jordan Westburg will be suitable for a successful performance

The pitcher facing the Yankees lineup in this upcoming game for the Orioles is announced to be Tyler Wells. A Right-handed pitcher with decent numbers and a preference to use most of his pitch arsenal.

Tyler Wells’ basics statistics:

YearWLERAGGSSVIPSOWHIP
2023 Regular Season753.6520190111.01100.99
Career Regular Season16153.9887424271.22511.03
Source: MLB 

In his second half, in 2 games started his record stands 0-1, establishing a poor 11.37 ERA in 6.1 IP, allowing 20 H, 10 ER, 1 HR, 4 BB, 14 K, 1.38 WHIP, and a remarkable .282 AVG.

Source: Baseballsavant

As his Statcasts numbers show, Wells’ pitching approach is to mix his pitching arsenal has not been very effective throughout this post-All-star part of the season. Hitters are reading his pitches with a certain level of ease that results in batted ball events that keep his expected SLG this high. Perhaps the proportion of strikeouts and the low expected average of the opposing hitters represents the potential to silence the Yankees players.

Here are the numbers of the active New York Yankees players that had the opportunity to face Tyler Wells at home plate before this game.

Statcast
PlayerPAABH2B3BHRSOK%Whiff%BBBB%BASLGwOBAxBAxSLGxwOBAEVLA
 Wells, Tyler10398183163029.12843.90.1840.4180.2720.2170.4490.30192.119.5
Statcast
PlayerPAABH2B3BHRSOK%Whiff%BBBB%BASLGwOBAxBAxSLGxwOBAEVLA
 Rizzo, Anthony2018100084035.6150.0560.0560.1150.090.1830.17588.328.9
 Torres, Gleyber19194002421.124.4000.2110.5260.3050.2780.5170.33693.419.5
 LeMahieu, DJ15142000426.719.216.70.1430.1430.1640.2550.3570.29493.25.7
 Stanton, Giancarlo16154201531.341.916.30.2670.60.3830.2630.6220.3995.421.4
 Kiner-Falefa, Isiah1212201118.36.3000.1670.5830.2990.2410.5430.3389.37.4
 Higashioka, Kyle773101342.928.6000.42910.5920.2740.6870.496.331.5
 Volpe, Anthony651001116.725116.70.20.80.4510.3060.9180.53995.723.3
 Bader, Harrison55100012020000.20.20.1770.1080.1330.10885.743.5
 Bauers, Jake220000210025000000
 McKinney, Billy1100001100100000000
Source: Baseballsavant

Yankees vs. Orioles Game 3

Luis Severino’s statistics:

YearWLERAGGSSVIPSOWHIP
2023 Regular Season246.461111054.1451.73
Career Regular Season52333.631331180692.17541.17
Source: MLB

In this series closing game, Luis Severino will start on the mound facing the Orioles’ starting pitcher Dan Kremer. Severino’s last game against the Orioles had a frustrating outcome for him because of allowing 10 H, 7 ER in just 2.2 IP.

This second half of the season he´s looking renewed as his numbers display much better outing that keeps him with a 1-0 record in 2 games, 3.09 ERA over 11.2 IP, 14 H, 4 ER, 3 HR, 3 BB,    8 K, 1.46 WHIP and .311 AVG. Therefore, if he can continue that level of effectiveness, he might redeem himself from that beating.

The following stats display Severino’s performance against the Orioles batters, showing concerning numbers against this team’s lineup:

Statcast
PlayerPAABH2B3BHRSOK%Whiff%BBBB%BASLGwOBAxBAxSLGxwOBAEVLA
 Severino, Luis4543154031226.727.324.40.3490.6510.4350.2490.3740.28987.312.9
Statcast
PlayerPAABH2B3BHRSOK%Whiff%BBBB%BASLGwOBAxBAxSLGxwOBAEVLA
 Santander, Anthony883002112.518.2000.3751.1250.6280.3080.5980.38691.313.6
 McCann, James66320035030.8000.50.8330.560.2020.4010.2595.811.3
 Urías, Ramón760000342.954.5114.3000.0980.1620.1780.22891.3-6
 Rutschman, Adley22000015010000000.0450.0650.04774.750
 Henderson, Gunnar3330010011.100121.260.3430.5560.3910017.7
 Hays, Austin43000012550125000.1720.0260.0310.1974.427
 Mountcastle, Ryan330000133.322.2000000.0790.080.07550.124
 Mateo, Jorge22100015050000.50.50.4420.3630.3820.32973.217
 McKenna, Ryan22000015033.3000000.0050.0110.00688.740
 Frazier, Adam22200000000110.8840.8110.9050.75780.217.5
 Cowser, Colton2200000020000000.2260.2610.24497.3-15.5
 Westburg, Jordan2211000033.3000.510.6240.220.2380.20385.3-5.5
 O’Hearn, Ryan2221000033.30011.51.0650.6891.0520.74497.817.5
Source: Baseballsavant

Despite having an advantageous 26.7% strikeout rate, the huge .651 SLG and .349 and .435 wOBA overshadow the previous outing he had against those batters. Perhaps finding a way to fool the Orioles lineup or getting outs when there are runners in scoring position or simply having a well-crafted strategy against players like James McCann, Anthony Santander, Gunnar Henderson, Jorge Mateo, Adam Frazier, and Ryan O´Hearn. Being more careful or lowering the usage of his 4-Seam Fastball which instead of being his best weapon has turned out to be the best ally to the opposing batter this season.

The pitcher in charge of starting the game for the Orioles in this matchup will be Dean Kremer. A right-handed pitcher whose drive on the mound is to attack the zone while mainly using his Fastball and Cutter.

Dean Kremer´s basics statistics:

YearWLERAGGSSVIPSOWHIP
2023 Regular Season1044.5921210115.21041.31
Career Regular Season19194.5760590313.12601.35
Source: MLB

In his second half out of 3 games started his record stands 1-0, establishing a decent  3.57 ERA in 17.2 IP, allowing 9 H, 7 ER, 1 HR, 8 BB, 12 K, 0.96 WHIP, and a remarkable .148 AVG.

As his Statcasts numbers show, Kremer’s pitching approach is to mix his pitching high-speed pitches which could be very effective against the Yankee players.

Here are the numbers of the active New York Yankees players that had the opportunity to face Dean Kremer at home plate before this game.


Statcast
PlayerPAABH2B3BHRSOK%Whiff%BBBB%BASLGwOBAxBAxSLGxwOBAEVLA
 Kremer, Dean7873193002025.625.545.10.260.3010.2730.260.3780.30192.812.2
Statcast
PlayerPAABH2B3BHRSOK%Whiff%BBBB%BASLGwOBAxBAxSLGxwOBAEVLA
 LeMahieu, DJ232182003138.128.70.3810.4760.3990.3110.520.38394.111.8
 Torres, Gleyber1514410032022.616.70.2860.3570.3050.2750.3290.2988.516.3
 Stanton, Giancarlo11114000327.336.8000.3640.3640.320.3060.4210.31697.15.1
 Higashioka, Kyle87100045050112.50.1430.1430.1970.1440.3060.24998.61
 Rizzo, Anthony981000333.323.1000.1250.1250.1780.2410.30.28896.19.6
 Kiner-Falefa, Isiah55100024033.3000.20.20.1770.2310.3110.23185-7.7
 Bauers, Jake330000133.360000000.0050.0080.00690.171
 Volpe, Anthony44000012516.7000000.2810.330.26787.414.3
Source: Baseballsavant

This chart shows the struggles that most Yankees players in the lineup had when facing this pitcher. Specifically because of the high strike-out rate.

What do you think? Leave your comment below.

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One thought on “Yankees vs. Orioles series: A head-to-head prediction

  1. Judge could be the X factor.
    Otherwise, the weak Yankees offense spells a series loss. Lemahieu and Rizzo look done, with Rozzo’s K rate unbelievable.

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