O's try to squeeze in doubleheader

O's try to squeeze in doubleheader

BALTIMORE -- The Orioles will have to deal with foreboding weather conditions and an extra-wild pitching staff Saturday, when they hope to play a day-night doubleheader against Oakland with tropical storm Hanna bearing down on Baltimore and the East Coast. And if the games get in, they hope to see their pitching staff shake a distressing tendency to give away free bases.

Baltimore's pitching staff has walked 56 batters in the last seven games, topping the seven-walk mark six times in that span. Manager Dave Trembley, who had his contract renewed on Friday, spent the pregame hours talking about how tough it was to compete while giving away free bases and then watched as the same exact process played itself out.

"I don't have any answers, to be honest with you," Trembley said after the game. "I don't have any magic formula. I don't have any catch phrases. I don't have any quick fix to it. It's just ... you've got to be able to throw the ball over the plate."

The Orioles will have two walk-prone pitchers on the mound Saturday, which means things may get uglier before they improve. Garrett Olson has walked 52 batters in his 22 starts this year, and Daniel Cabrera, who is scheduled to pitch the nightcap, has led the American League in walks for two straight years and leads in wild pitches and hit batsmen this year.

Baltimore has lost seven straight games and 14 of its last 16, but will play nine straight games at home. Trembley has to hope that Camden Yards -- which has seen the Orioles play to a 33-32 record this year -- can help them reverse the funk.

Pitching matchup

Game 1

OAK: LHP Greg Smith (6-14, 4.23 ERA)
Smith has lost more games than anyone since Tom Candiotti lost 16 for the A's in 1998. The won-loss record has been affected by a lack of run support. The A's have scored one run or less in 16 of his 27 starts. Smith allowed eight runs on seven hits in five innings in a loss to the Minnesota Twins on Sunday.

BAL: LHP Garrett Olson (8-7, 6.53 ERA)
Olson got lit up for six earned runs in his return from Triple-A Norfolk, but two of those runs scored after he had left the game. The southpaw has had major difficulty getting Major Leaguers out since the All-Star break, and Trembley wants to see him command his fastball more and stick with it through the later innings.

Game 2

OAK: LHP Josh Outman (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
Outman, a 23-year-old rookie who made his big league debut with two scoreless innings of relief work Monday against the Royals, will be making his first Major League start against the O's in the nightcap of the doubleheader, replacing injured Justin Duchscherer. Outman was acquired in the midseason trade that sent Joe Blanton to the Phillies.

BAL: RHP Daniel Cabrera (8-8, 5.24 ERA)
Cabrera will return from his six-game suspension in time to start the second game of a doubleheader against Oakland. The right-hander has racked up an 8.02 ERA and a 1.95 WHIP in eight starts since the All-Star break, a run that caused the team to run him through a magnetic resonance imaging test after his last outing.

Bird bites
Aubrey Huff and his wife, Baubi, welcomed their first child -- a son named Jayce -- into the world Thursday. ... Hitting coach Terry Crowley served a one-game suspension Friday night after being ejected from a game against Boston earlier in the week. ... Baltimore walked 10 batters Friday night -- five of them with the bases loaded.

Tickets
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On the Internet
 MLB.TV
 Gameday Audio
•  Gameday
•  Official game notes

On television
• MASN 2

On radio
• WHFS 105.7

Up next
• Sunday: Off-day
• Monday: Orioles (Radhames Liz, 5-4, 7.91) vs. Indians (Fausto Carmona, 8-5, 4.51), 7:05 p.m. ET
• Tuesday: Orioles (Jeremy Guthrie, 10-11, 3.57) vs. Indians (Jeremy Sowers, 2-8, 5.97), 7:05 p.m. ET

Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.