Bob Haynie: The Birds Are Bashing
A lot of attention has been given lately to the pitching woes of the Baltimore Orioles. And rightfully so. Closer Jim Johnson has been awful and the starters have been hard pressed to get through six innings.
The Baltimore offense , however, has been blasting away at opposing pitchers.
Heading into Tuesday night’s game against the Washington Nationals, the Orioles were leading the major leagues in both home runs (69) and slugging percentage (.459). The Birds are third in runs scored trailing only Detroit and Boston.
Chris Davis, Adam Jones, Manny Machado and Nick Markakis are all hitting over .300. Davis has been among the American League leaders in the Triple Crown categories–BA, HR’s and RBI–all season long.
Let’s not forget the contributions of Nate McLouth and the fact that J.J. Hardy and Matt Wieters are hitting much better than they were in April.
Keep in mind, the Orioles are putting up these big numbers with limited to no production from second base and DH.
In addition to being strong with the bats, the Birds are also one of the best defensive teams in all of baseball.
Because of the recent stretch of blown saves, the struggles of Johnson are what’s getting most of the headlines. We tend forget that the team does do some things very well.
Hitting the baseball and scoring runs are among them.
That’s good thing.
Unless the pitching turns it around, the Baltimore Orioles are going to need all the runs they can get.