The Orioles Need Run Support
Mandatory Credit: Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports
The Baltimore Orioles were on a “hot streak” over this past week. The team started the month of May going 8-3 as of Monday morning.Despite going 5-1 in the last six games, the Orioles cannot seem to get run support for their pitchers. In the Houston series, the Orioles were outscored 12-11 over the three games against the Astros.
In the past two games, the Orioles have only scored a combined three runs against an opponent’s ten. Scoring only one or two runs a game will not put this team in any opportunity to win multiple ball games in a row.
Tonight was the best showing of this. Bud Norris pitched a gem tonight. In seven innings, he only allowed one run on four hits. In those seven innings he only faced more than three batters per inning once.
However, this great pitching performance was to no avail as the Orioles left nine on base and only scored one run. When playing such a competitive team like the Tigers, you need to manufacture multiple runs throughout the game (not just one in the second inning).
The Orioles are having trouble seeing pitches. I understand this is a power team that has the potential to hit multiple home runs in a single game, but the Orioles need base runners as well.
The Orioles have a player on their 40-man roster that can do just that. Unfortunately, each night he is not putting on an Orioles uniform. Rather, he is in Norfolk, Virginia playing for the Triple-A Orioles Affiliate, the Norfolk Tides.
The player I am referencing is Steve Lombardozzi. Lombardozzi was traded to Baltimore late in Spring Training for shortstop, Alex Gonzalez. Lombardozzi played in nineteen games at the beginning of the season. In that time, he hit .292/.301/.333.
However, on May 1st, Lombardozzi was sent down to Norfolk when the Orioles activated third baseman, Manny Machado. This move did not phase the 25-year-old. In Norfolk, the second baseman has hit .317/.391/.366 in 41 at-bats.
It makes no sense as to why he has not been called up to the Majors. Meanwhile, Showalter is keeping Ryan Flaherty and David Lough on the “big league” roster even though they both could use some time in the Minors, batting .203 and .167 respectively.
Lombardozzi’s Major League batting average is better than J.J. Hardy, Chris Davis, and Machado’s batting averages. It is unfathomable as to why a player who is batting so well, in not only the Minors but also the Majors too, is not at least part of the Major League active roster.
If the Orioles could bring Lombardozzi up, he most certainly will provide another consistent bat for this ball club and that is something Baltimore needs drastically.