Jun 01, 2010, 10:49AM

The Orioles' terrible season continues

There's just no light at the end of this tunnel.

More of the same from the O’s over the weekend. After a 16-game stretch against the Yankees, Red Sox, and Twins in which the O’s went 7-9, I thought they’d put together a winning record against the Mariners, Indians, Royals, Rangers, Nationals, Athletics, and Blue Jays. They started off those games well, winning three of the first four. After that it went downhill fast, as the Orioles have only won three of their past 15 games to end that 19 game stretch at 6-13.  The Orioles now stand at 15-36 and still have the worst record in the Majors.

The Orioles got demolished this weekend. They scored three runs in the series, and gave up 16. The team had no home runs, while the Blue Jays crushed O’s pitching for nine of them. Trying to look for anything positive, Chris Tillman didn’t have a terrible debut, going 5.2 innings and giving up two runs. Toronto may not hit for average, but they can absolutely mash.     

We don’t have to rehash all the hope and optimism going into this year, but many thought the O’s would definitely pass Toronto in the AL East standings. Toronto finished 11 games better in 2009, but it was widely agreed that the Orioles’ crop of young players will get better, while Toronto traded Roy Halladay, arguably the best pitcher in the game. On paper it looked like the teams would produce a pretty similar result.  

How are the Blue Jays already 15 games better than the Orioles this year? It’s one thing really, and that is the home run. Their pitching is superior to the Orioles, and they have three young pitchers in Marcum, Romero, and Cecil who should be great for years to come. Oriole pitchers have given up the most home runs in the league at 62, while Toronto has only allowed 37, the second fewest. On top of that Toronto’s pitching staff leads the league in strikeouts, while the Orioles are 13th out of 14 teams.

The Blue Jays have scored the second most runs in the AL behind the Yankees. They are doing this with the third lowest batting average and the worst on base percentage in the American League. Yes, even the Orioles putrid offense has been better in both categories. The reason a team can get on base at such a low clip and score the second most runs is, of course, the home run. The Blue Jays have 89 home runs; more than double the 44 home runs the Orioles have hit.     

I don’t think the Blue Jays can continue to hit the ball out of the park at such a ridiculous pace, but everybody in that lineup has power potential, something the Orioles definitely lack. Toronto exemplifies what the home run can do for a team. First in home runs hit, second fewest home runs allowed.  

The O’s have pitching prospects, but little in the minors in terms of hitters, and have had a big power void at first base that seems to be ignored every off-season. So in the future, where will the power come from?

Beats me.


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