The Devil Rays come home to face the Baltimore Orioles for three games in what is the most important series so far in this young season. If the Rays want to show they have improved they need to be competitive in the AL East. That means they have to beat the team that they have the best chance of finishing ahead of this season. With the offense clicking on most cylinders right now and James Shields and Scott Kazmir going to the mound, the Rays must win at least two games in this series if they want to start moving up the standings and possibly reach 81 wins.

  • The Orioles are 6-6 after taking 3 straight from the Royals before having Sundays match rained out. Baltimore was 13-6 against the Rays in 2006 including 6-4 at Tropicana Field.
  • Center fielder Jay Payton and catcher Ramon Hernandez are on the DL. Hernandez is eligible to come off the DL for this series. Outfielder Corey Patterson will miss the first two games of the series after the death of his grandfather.
  • The Devil Rays return home and will begin a stretch where they will play 30 of their next 44 in the state of Florida.
  • Aubrey Huff will return to the Trop for the first time since being traded to the Astros. He does not regret playing for the Rays, but he doesn’t regret leaving either.

But in the end, it started getting old for me as far as the losing. It was time for a change of scenery for me. – Aubrey Huff

We are curious. Is Huff aware that the Orioles haven’t had a winning record in 10 years? That is the third longest streak in baseball.

PROBABLE STARTERS
Monday, 7:10 et
Baltimore Adam Loewen, LHP (1-0, 1.80)
Devil Rays James Shields, RHP (1-0, 4.61)

Tuesday, 7:10 et
Baltimore Steve Trachsel, RHP (0-0, 2.63)
Devil Rays Casey Fossum, LHP (0-1, 7.59)

Wednesday, 3:10 et
Baltimore Eric Bedard, LHP (2-1, 5.09)
Devil Rays Scott Kazmir, LHP (1-1, 4.59)

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