Bowie leads the last-place Nationals (26-37) into Camden Yards on Tuesday night to begin a three-game series against the struggling Baltimore Orioles (29-34).
The left-hander was 0-2 with a 3.71 ERA and blew his only save opportunity this season in 20 relief appearances. Manager Manny Acta then pressed Bowie (2-2, 3.79 ERA) into a starting role after Washington placed John Patterson, Shawn Hill and Jason Bergmann on the disabled list last month.
In going 2-0 over four starts, Bowie has posted a 3.86 ERA and limited opponents to a .200 batting average. Washington won all four of those starts, including a 6-5 victory over Pittsburgh on Wednesday as Cristian Guzman scored the winning run on a wild pitch in the bottom of the ninth.
Bowie went five-plus innings and gave up a run and two hits with five walks.
“He was effectively wild,” Acta told the team’s official Web site. “Of all the guys that are coming out of the bullpen and starting, I’ll take five innings or five-plus from them.”
Bowie made his first start since 1999 when he faced Baltimore on May 20, but lasted just 3 1-3 innings and allowed two runs and four hits in Washington’s 4-3 victory.
Washington tried for a weekend sweep in Minnesota on Sunday, but fell 6-3. Mike Bacsik - another member of Acta’s makeshift rotation - gave up four runs and nine hits in five innings.
Dmitri Young had three hits for the third time in five games. The first baseman is batting .462 (12-for-26) during a six-game hitting streak and is second in the NL with a .342 average.
Young has three hits in five career at-bats against Daniel Cabrera (5-6, 4.70), who will try end his recent inconsistency for Baltimore. The right-hander has alternated losses and wins in his last four outings, and will be looking to win consecutive starts for just the second time this season.
Against Seattle on Tuesday, he yielded four runs and seven hits over eight innings of a 9-5 victory that snapped the Orioles’ five-game skid.
“I said, ‘Daniel, we need you to stay focused. We need you to stay composed. The team needs you. We need you to go deep in this ballgame for us.’ And he did it,” Orioles manager Sam Perlozzo said after Cabrera won for the first time in five road starts this season.
Cabrera, though, has walked four in each of his last three outings, and his 41 walks lead the AL.
The right-hander is 1-7 with a 6.35 ERA in 10 interleague starts, including a 9-5 loss June 25 against Washington. Cabrera gave up six runs, five hits and five walks in 4 2-3 innings.
Baltimore has scored only three runs while losing its last two matchups with NL clubs, including a 6-1 defeat to Colorado on Sunday. Aubrey Huff’s second-inning double scored Miguel Tejada for the Orioles, losers of seven of nine since a six-game winning streak.
“Sooner or later, we’re going to start getting some hits,” Perlozzo said. “I don’t think we’re swinging the bats real well.”
Baltimore is hitting .238 in nine June games, and has one homer in its last six contests.
The Orioles took two of three in Washington last month, and won two of three at Camden Yards from June 23-25 in the only series there between the regional rivals in 2006.