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Series preview: Tampa Bay Rays at Baltimore Orioles

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What's new: The future is starting to look brighter in Baltimore, with a wave of top-tier talent, including C Matt Wieters, in the minors. But it looks like another long year in the big leagues, with plenty of new faces as the O's signed six free agents and made five trades — only 11 players are still around from last year's opening day roster. SS Cesar Izturis, C Gregg Zaun and Japanese RHP Koji Uehara were among the most important acquisitions.

Key stat: The Rays have won a team-record 12 straight over the Orioles, matching the longest current streak in the majors (Milwaukee over Pittsburgh) and including a team-record-tying six straight at their park.

Connections: Orioles RHP Danys Baez, LHP Mark Hendrickson and INFs Aubrey Huff and Ty Wigginton are all ex-Rays; RHP Chris Ray a Tampa product. Rays RHP Lance Cormier spent most of last season in Baltimore.

Series history: Orioles lead 96-90 overall, 52-40 at Camden Yards.

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

Series preview: Tampa Bay Rays at Baltimore Orioles 04/09/09 [Last modified: Thursday, April 9, 2009 9:55pm]
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