Tap-In: Who will lead the 2016 Orioles in homers?
Park your AMC Gremlin out front and get inside Connolly’s Tap Room pronto.
We’re partying like it is April, 1970.
We’re showing Apollo 13 on the flat screen above the bar (we couldn’t get a console up there), we’re playing Beatles records all night (Paul left the band that month) and beer today is 75 cents a draft.
But, be warned. I’m only serving domestic macros – get your Budweiser here – today.
Why all the April 1970 love?
Because these 2016 Orioles have accomplished something that bests even the 1970 Orioles – you know, the team considered the best in franchise history and among the Top 10 all-time in the sport.
Those 1970 Orioles won 108 regular season games, swept the Minnesota Twins in the ALCS and beat Cincinnati’s Big Red Machine in five games in Brooks Robinson’s World Series.
Those 1970 Orioles set a franchise record with five wins to start the season (they also ended the regular season winning 11 straight).
But these 2016 Orioles have now won six straight to begin the season – capturing the modern-day Orioles’ mark.
It’s likely the comparisons will end there, but any time an Orioles team accomplishes something the 1970 squad didn’t, well, that’s impressive.
Monday’s win against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park was a little different than the other five so far. It was a slugfest, which the Orioles captured on a three-run homer by Chris Davis in the top of the ninth inning.
Davis now has hit three homers in six games; same as Manny Machado. Four other Orioles have one, including perennial slugger Mark Trumbo, who hit his first for the club Monday.
Adam Jones doesn’t have any homers yet, but that’ll change once he is healthy. And Pedro Alvarez has struggled, but he’ll get his share of longballs, too. Remember, he tied for the National League lead in 2013.
The last three major league home run champions have been Orioles: Davis in 2013 and 2015 and Nelson Cruz in 2014.
It’s possible somebody on the club makes it four in a row. But which somebody?
Machado and Davis seem like the most reasonable choices. But I don’t think you should count out Trumbo – or maybe even Alvarez.
So, since I asked for your pitching prediction last week at the Tap Room, I’ll ask for a hitting prediction today. Which Oriole will lead the 2016 team in homers? You can’t predict Boog Powell, though he was the team leader in 1970 with 35 home runs as part of his AL MVP season.
I’m taking Machado. And you?
Tap-In Question: Who will lead the 2016 Orioles in homers? Why?
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