I’ve got three words for you today at the Tap Room: Excited, concerned, satisfied.
Choose one and then explain your answer.
That’s what I want from you today. That’s your barwork, if you will.
The Orioles are through the first five weeks of the season. They are 18-12 and in first place in the American League East. They are playing .600 ball, and only the Chicago White Sox have a better winning percentage in the AL.
The Orioles’ starting pitching is beginning to go a little deeper, their bullpen and defense are as good as advertised and that offense sure can score when the balls are flying out of the park.
Many Machado, Mark Trumbo and Chris Davis are among the league leaders in homers and RBIs. And the club’s on-base percentage has certainly jumped up from last year.
In one sense, Orioles fans have to be pleased, tickled, excited.
Of course, this team has obvious flaws that get exposed at times. It’s only been recently that the rotation has pitched consistently beyond the fifth inning, putting extra pressure on the sublime bullpen. And there doesn’t appear to be immediate rotation help in the minors.
The offense is streaky – we’ve seen a couple stretches where the Orioles don’t hit home runs and, consequently, they don’t score much.
And the defense took a hit with the loss of shortstop and infield stalwart J.J. Hardy, who will be out six weeks or more with a fracture in his left foot.
With all the good mojo surrounding the fast start, the Orioles are actually just 11-12 since they began the year undefeated in their first seven games.
So, in another sense, Orioles fans could be cautious, skeptical, concerned.
Me? The bartender, website guy and long-time chronicler of this baseball team?
I guess I’m slightly surprised by the start, especially given the hurdles thrown in the Orioles’ path such as the terrible weather and the injuries to Kevin Gausman, Zach Britton and Hardy.
I think hitting coach Scott Coolbaugh and company have done a good job of trying to get this offense to be less one-dimensional. And I was majorly concerned about the rotation, but a healthy Kevin Gausman eases that a touch. Losing Britton for only three games was a dagger avoided, too, for sure.
I lost that fan vibe a long time ago, but if I were an Orioles’ fan right now, I think I’d be satisfied with how the first 30 games have played out. Not overly excited, but not too worried, either.
A solid start to a long season. Lots of positives, some negatives and a decent record as the quarter pole approaches.
Three words: Excited, concerned, satisfied. Which one best suits your feelings toward these Orioles so far?
Let me know, and explain why.
Tap-In Question: Which word describes your thoughts about these Orioles: Excited, concerned, satisfied? Tell us why?