Nine days into May, and the Orioles are at the top of a few AL hitting statistics. After a struggling April, can the O’s keep it going and into the summer?
After how the open month of baseball went for the Baltimore Orioles, you would be hard pressed to believe that they would start May as they have. Through seven games (going 4-3), the O’s are red hot as the bats have come alive.
Orioles Nation was perplexed after April. Baltimore was supposed to have an issue with pitching, not hitting. However, if anything taught us about the opening month, it was the complete opposite for the Orioles and their players.
Writing a post like this typically does one of two things. It either jinxes the team, or simply informs the readers of a promising start to a dull beginning. Let’s hope this brings the latter of the two options to fruition, and breakdown just why the Orioles are playing on top, and can they keep it up?
The Orioles offense tops the AL in May, but can they stay red hot?
As you can see from the above Tweet from Roch Kobatko, the O’s are hitting just south of .300, and getting on base just a few at bats below .500. So, that’s why, have a good night, thanks for reading (Kidding of course). The Orioles’ who struggled in April were the ones that they needed to be hot.
Austin “DUDE” Hays has come alive all season, but so far in May, his line looks like this .317/.391/.485/.876. He leads the team in hits (32) and with a .317, he is blowing the rest of the Orioles out of the water. Hays’ has been everything advertised, and it has only gotten better from here.
Something clicked for the M,M,M,&M boys, because they have gotten the rest of the team going. Ryan Mountcastle has increased his batting average from .250 to .276 in seven games, Trey Mancini has bumped his up from .224 to .260, and Cedric Mullins has sky rocketed up from .210 to .248 so far in May. Between the original M&M&M boys that’s an upgrade in batting of .080.
The fourth, and newest member to the “M-club” is Jorge Mateo. He too has bumped his average up from .231 to .242, but that’s not the biggest story with him. Mateo had eight different games in April with at least two strikeouts. In May, he only has five and never more than one a game. The improvement for Mateo is key, but the rest of the Orioles have improved their as well.
The Orioles finished April striking out 25.7% of the time. That was second worst in the Majors only behind the A’s. At the heart of that issue was Chris Owings, striking out 57.1% of the time and Mateo striking out 32% of his at-bats.
That stat drop, although not dramatic, has improved to 24% and with Owings showing he can walk (3x in Sunday’s evening game). The improvement can equate to a lot of things, getting used to the new wall, warming up, quick spring training, but whatever the case is, the Orioles have figured it out, and can finally help out that pitching staff that has been holding the line so far this year.