Tap-In: What are your expectations for Kevin Gausman this year? - BaltimoreBaseball.com
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Tap-In: What are your expectations for Kevin Gausman this year?


It’s Kevin Gausman Day at Connolly’s Tap Room.

Fake drafts for 39 cents for a limited time.  A free shot if you turn in a pair of eyeglasses.

It’s a new season for the no-longer bespectacled right-hander.

He’s back after being shelved in spring training with shoulder tendinitis. Gausman was OK in the spring, allowing six baserunners and three earned runs in six innings (4.50 ERA) while striking out six before the injury.

His three minor league rehab appearances went OK, too: 12 hits, five walks, four runs and 19 strikeouts in 11 innings (3.27 ERA).

So now the 25-year-old, former first-rounder is back. It’s going to be interesting to see what he does tonight in his season debut at the Tampa Bay Rays, and how long Orioles manager Buck Showalter allows him to go if he is pitching well.

The organization kept Gausman in the minors until he could get to the 90-pitch plateau. He should be ready for at least that tonight if, as Showalter likes to say, the opponent cooperates. (Gausman is 2-3 with a 6.16 ERA in nine games and seven starts versus the Rays, and 2-1 with a 5.40 ERA in six games, four starts, at Tropicana Field.)

Gausman admitted that he was a little tentative when he first came back from shoulder tendinitis last season. He made 17 starts for the Orioles in 2015 and his best one was his last one, when he struck out 10 Toronto Blue Jays and allowed just one run in eight innings.

We all know he can be dominant when everything is clicking. The big question, like it is for most pitchers, is whether he can be consistent throughout a full season.

Showalter has said that he thinks this is the year Gausman takes a big step forward. I agree, but what does that mean?

His career bests are: seven wins, 113 1/3 innings and a 3.57 ERA.

I say, realistically, if Gausman can stay healthy and win 12 games, post an ERA under 4.00 and throw 180 innings, that has to be considered a major success. I think he reaches those marks this year.

I know you may want more from a guy who was picked fourth overall in the 2012 draft, but that would be a solid season.

Is that high, low or about right for your expectations for Gausman in 2016? Spell them out for me.

Tap-In Question: What are your expectations for Kevin Gausman this season?



  1. abreen17

    April 25, 2016 at 9:44 am

    Yep, 12-14 wins and a sub-4.00 era sound about right to me. I’ll go a step further and say: ALCS MVP.

    Admittedly, I’m a bit of a pollyanna about these things.

    • Dan Connolly

      April 25, 2016 at 11:09 am

      ALCS MVP? I’d make a joke about cutting you off, but I like your enthusiasm for a Monday. Free fake drink chip your way.

  2. Creatively_19

    April 25, 2016 at 9:51 am

    I was gonna say 180 innings and a 3.50 ERA, but maybe that is too realistic. I guess what I really want to see from him is getting outs and keeping the team in the game. The actual numbers are unimportant to me as long as he gives the O’s a chance to win the games he starts. That and stay healthy, as always.

    • Dan Connolly

      April 25, 2016 at 11:11 am

      3.50 ERA is doable. He had a 3.57 ERA in 20 starts for O’s in 2014. But I think he’ll have a little rust early as he tries to get his stamina back.

      • Creatively_19

        April 26, 2016 at 9:29 am

        Looks to be 100% rust free. I’d take a bunch more starts like that last night. If the O’s had 5 on the board instead of 0, he might have had a much longer leash.

  3. OsDent

    April 25, 2016 at 11:07 am

    If he stays healthy, he should get 27 or 28 starts this year. If he can get 22-23 QS, Sub 4.00 era I think team will win a lot of games with him on the mound. It will all depend on his ability to locate FB down and be able to use the slider.

    • Dan Connolly

      April 25, 2016 at 11:12 am

      I agree. Especially with the location of his fastball. If he is spotting it, everything else comes together.

  4. jcash4

    April 25, 2016 at 5:16 pm

    Cy young baby!!

    • Dan Connolly

      April 25, 2016 at 9:02 pm

      That … could exceed expectations.

  5. vjterp

    April 27, 2016 at 12:19 pm

    12 wins is about right I would guess. As long as he stays healthy and eats innings while keeping the O’s in games I would be happy. At this point he needs a solid season to build on as he gets ready to enter into his prime.

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