Baltimore Orioles: 3 takeaways from the Birds’ first home series win of 2018

BALTIMORE, MD - APRIL 27: Pedro Alvarez (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)
BALTIMORE, MD - APRIL 27: Pedro Alvarez (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images) /
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Baltimore Orioles
BALTIMORE, MD – APRIL 23: Starting pitcher Kevin Gausman (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /

3. The Kevin Gausman redemption tour is real

Gausman enjoyed a breakout season in 2016, posting 4 Wins Above Replacement; last year, he was roughly half that valuable, as his ERA jumped by more than a full run.

Through his first four starts of this season, Gausman appeared to be continuing that downward trend — his numbers included a 5.57 ERA, a 6.09 FIP and a whopping 2.57 home runs per 9 innings. Fans across the country suffered flashbacks to past instances of the Orioles ruining perfectly good pitching prospects.

And then, something awesome happened: Gausman started pitching like an All-Star. It started last Monday, when he mowed down the Indians in eight two-run innings. He wasn’t quite as good on Sunday against the Tigers, lasting just under six innings, but he still managed to pitch well, gamely working around five hits and three walks. All told, his ERA for the week was a rock-solid 1.98.

Check out some of the highlights from his latest start:

Gausman’s season numbers aren’t quite as good as Dylan Bundy’s, but with a few more strong outings, the Colorado native can challenge his fellow former first-rounder for bragging rights as the Orioles’ best young arm. That there are enough young pitchers on the roster to even entertain such a debate is a reason to smile in itself.

Next: O's injury report: Trumbo set to return soon

What was your biggest takeaway from this weekend’s series? Let us know on social media, and keep it here at Birds Watcher for more updates on the Baltimore Orioles.