The Arizona Diamondbacks must be happy to get out of New York. They should be thrilled to be heading to Baltimore.
The Diamondbacks look to rebound from three ugly losses when they open a three-game series against the last-place Baltimore Orioles.
Arizona (37-30) had every reason to feel good about itself after winning 11 of 12 to move a season-best 12 games over .500 after play on June 6.
A loss to San Francisco the next day, though, sent the Diamondbacks on a downward trend. They lost two of three at home to Boston, then were outscored 18-4 in three straight losses to the red-hot Yankees.
Three costly errors and a poor start by Doug Davis added up to a 7-1 loss in Thursday’s series finale at Yankee Stadium.
Arizona pitchers issued 14 walks in the three games, compared to three issued by New York. The Diamondbacks also had five errors, while the Yankees committed only one.
“Obviously, we caught this team at the wrong time,” Arizona manager Bob Melvin said. “We didn’t play well enough to win today. We didn’t pitch well enough, we didn’t swing the bats well enough. It ended up being a bad game for us.”
Making matters worse for Melvin’s team was the sight of second baseman Orlando Hudson hobbling off the field after jamming his left ankle running out a single. It’s been a recurring injury, and he was listed as day to day.
Interleague play continues to be a problem for the Diamondbacks, who are 1-5 this season and 7-21 in their last 28 games against the AL.
The Orioles (29-37) are in no position to have any sympathy for the Diamondbacks.
Baltimore has lost five straight - matching a season high - and 10 of 12 to fall a season-worst eight games under .500 and to the bottom of the AL East.
“Its been frustrating, this whole stretch we’ve been on,” first baseman Kevin Millar said. “We’ve lost a lot of one-run games. We haven’t gotten a big hit in the right situation. But we can’t feel sorry for ourselves. Nobody’s going to feel sorry for us.”
The Orioles stranded 11 runners Thursday in a 3-1 loss to Washington, getting swept at home by another last-place team.
“We’re pressing. What you’re seeing is guys trying to do too much,” Orioles manager Sam Perlozzo said. “It’s not a lack of effort. It’s too much effort.”
Starter Micah Owings (4-1, 3.76 ERA) seeks his fourth straight win for Arizona. The rookie right-hander was unable to win his third consecutive start Saturday against Boston despite allowing two runs and seven hits in six innings. The Diamondbacks lost 4-3 in 10 innings.
Since he was reached for a season-high seven runs at Pittsburgh on May 19, Owings has surrendered only four runs in his past three starts over 20 innings.
Baltimore turns to ace Erik Bedard (4-4, 3.72), who has only one win in his last nine outings. The left-hander had his shortest start in nearly two months Sunday in a 6-1 loss to Colorado, allowing three runs and nine hits in five innings.
Bedard, second in the AL with 103 strikeouts, has held opponents to three runs or fewer in eight consecutive starts, but the Orioles have scored more than three runs for him only once in that span.
Bedard has never faced the Diamondbacks, but is 4-1 with a 1.74 ERA in nine career starts against the NL.
The Diamondbacks won two of three games against the Orioles in 2004 at Camden Yards.