Next eight days give Birds a great chance to make some noise in A.L. East

June 10, 2014 | Drew Forrester

These next eight days are ultra-important for the Orioles.

They won’t be season defining, but if the Birds want to be seriously considered as threats in the American League, they need to do some heavy lifting between now and next Wednesday, June 18.

A 4-0 win over Boston last night got things started, with the Red Sox using the only decent starting pitcher the Birds will see in this series.  If the O’s can’t beat these two scrubs (Workman and De Le Rosa) the Sox are throwing at them the next two nights, that’s on them.

OK, then the varsity shows up in the form of the front-running Toronto Blue Jays, who visit OPACY for four games starting on Thursday.  This gives the Orioles a real chance to carve into that 5.5 game lead (as of today) Toronto has established just past the one-third mark of the season.  Then, it’s down to St. Petersburg for what should be a 3-game sweep of the lowly Rays.

If the O’s can put together a 7-2 mark over the next nine games, that tells us something.

If they stumble along and go 5-4 or worse, they’ll continue to tread water in the East while the Blue Jays soar.

Oddly enough, the Birds haven’t been any good at home this season (13-14), but these next two vs. Boston are absolutely winnable and then they need to stand toe-to-toe with the Blue Jays for four days.

The Orioles have been extremely unreliable through 62 games of 2014.  Win a few, lose a few, cough one up you shouldn’t, win one you shouldn’t.  It’s all added up to a 32-30 record, good enough for second place in the division — but scaring no one, I might add.

That said, after next Wednesday’s series finale in Tampa Bay, the Birds could be 39-32 and starting to put some distance between themselves and mediocrity.

They just need a nice 7-2 run here over the next eight days.

Sounds like wishful thinking for a team that has struggled to be consistent, but given the opponents, it’s very realistic.

6 Comments For This Post

  1. Craig Baumer Says:

    As long as we split or better with Toronto, I agree, the O’s can really make some hay in the next few series. However, Toronto is really playing good ball this season and it will be hard to split (or better) with them.

  2. Steve from Sandpoint Says:

    With hovering around 500 ball or better all season, the O’s have a great chance to make a huge statement to the rest of the A.L. East by doing what you said, going 7 & 2 or better !!!

  3. lakerboy Says:

    I wish that I could be more optimistic about our chances in the next several days, but honestly I’m not convinced that our pitching will hold up. What has been the longest Oriole winning streak this season? I think it’s been four games. Heck, even the Astros had a seven game winning streak, and they’re essentially a Triple A team. If your stud pitchers are struggling, (namely Tillman and Jimenez), where is there room for optimism? Some of this problem I lay squarely on the doorstep of Dave Wallace. If Tillman and Jimenez are not injured, why are they underperforming? Clearly, Tillman has regressed, and it could be argued that so has Jimemez, although his difficulty seems to be replicating his awkward mechanics. When your top of the rotation guys aren’t on the same sheet of music as the pitching coach there are bound to be problems. We’ll see how things turn out in the next ten days, but I’m not holding my breath expecting a miracle on the mound.

  4. tsnamm Says:

    I also would “like” to be optimistic, but I’m afraid I can’t…The Orioles have been a .500 team all year, and unless there is a sudden transformation, that’s what they’ll be in September. They will certainly have the opportunity, even hovering around .500 after the All Star break, to make a run and get into the playoffs. But they’re going to have to stop the “win 4, lose 3” pattern they’ve exhibited till this point. Up till now, I don’t see it happening. I sure hope I’m wrong, but I’m not feeling it…

  5. Eddie Says:

    This all sounds good except for one thing , The O’s are not very good . They’re built around the Home Run -C Yards- and that is exciting, but rarely produces a winner And Bucks whacky lineups don’t help much either , In the end they should crack .500 but just barely . Gausman looks good but how fast can they screw him up with release points and arm slots .

  6. Chris Says:

    If the orioles come out of this 9 game stretch with less than 6 wins it’s time to dismantle the team and trade vets. They could trade Markakis (unless he’s a 10/5 guy), Cruz, and Davis for a nice little haul. No sense in just hanging around .500 for the hell of it.

Leave a Reply