Major League Baseball
Preview
Baltimore at Pittsburgh
When: 7:05 PM ET, Tuesday, September 26, 2017
Where: PNC Park, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

A pair of teams with nothing to play for will square off when the Pittsburgh Pirates host the Baltimore Orioles on Tuesday night in the opener of a two-game interleague set. Pittsburgh has been relegated to the role of spoiler for weeks while Baltimore's flickering hopes for a postseason berth were officially snuffed out Saturday night.

The Pirates stalled division rival St. Louis' bid for a playoff slot by taking two of the final three over the weekend. Left fielder Starling Marte hit a tiebreaking homer Sunday for his second straight two-RBI game as he seeks a strong close to a season that was interrupted by an 80-game suspension for taking a performance-enhancing drug. The Orioles had the look of a contender after a seven-game winning streak toward the end of August, but Sunday's win versus Tampa Bay was only their fourth in 18 games. Pitching has been a culprit in the late-season tailspin by Baltimore, which has surrendered at least eight runs in seven of its last eight losses.

TV: 7:05 p.m. ET, MASN2 (Baltimore), AT&T SportsNet Pittsburgh

PITCHING MATCHUP: Orioles RH Kevin Gausman (11-10, 4.61 ERA) vs. Pirates RH Trevor Williams (6-9, 4.18)

Gausman has been sensational in his last two starts, although he had to settle for a no-decison against Boston last week despite limiting the Red Sox to three hits over eight scoreless innings. He won at Toronto in his previous turn, pitching seven strong innings of one-run ball. Gausman did not factor in the decision versus Pittsburgh on June 6, giving up four runs over 6 2/3 innings.

Williams has won only once over his last five starts despite a 2.12 ERA in that span, absorbing a hard-luck defeat last time out after holding Milwaukee to one run on three hits over five innings. That is the only run the 25-year-old has yielded in his last three starts at PNC Park, a span of 20 innings. Williams has kept the ball in the park over the last five turns, allowing one homer.

WALK-OFFS

1. Marte is riding a six-game hitting streak, with multiple hits in half of those contests.

2. Baltimore 2B Jonathan Schoop was 5-for-9 over his last two games and 4-for-8 against the Pirates in June.

3. The Orioles swept a two-game set in June to improve to 12-6 in interleague play against Pittsburgh.

PREDICTION: Orioles 5, Pirates 3
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away East Central West IL
Baltimore 75-82 W1 46-35 29-47 37-36 13-21 17-15 8-10
Pittsburgh 71-85 W2 42-37 29-48 19-11 33-43 11-21 8-10
Last Meeting
Baltimore Pittsburgh
Date Away Home Avg HR OPS Avg HR OPS
6/7/17 PIT 6 BAL 9 x .278 3 .961 .311 1 .790
Player Stats
Season Series
Batting Player Avg Hits OPS
Baltimore J. Schoop .500 4 1.931
Pittsburgh D. Freese .400 4 1.155
Offense Player HR Runs RBI
Baltimore J. Schoop 2 3 3
Pittsburgh J. Osuna 1 2 2
Pitching ERA Avg K
Baltimore 4.71 .267 20
Pittsburgh 6.64 .280 17
Season
Batting Player Avg Hits OPS
Baltimore J. Schoop .299 180 .858
Pittsburgh A. McCutchen .273 151 .828
Offense Player HR Runs RBI
Baltimore M. Machado 33 81 95
Pittsburgh A. McCutchen 26 88 79
Pitching ERA Avg K
Baltimore 4.91 .262 1193
Pittsburgh 4.25 .244 1213