It was just another night at the ballpark for Chris Davis. A couple of home runs, five RBIs, more records to approach.
Davis has 54 extra-base hits in 82 games and is on pace for 106, which would break Brady Anderson’s club record of 92 set in 1996. His 30 homers tie Anderson for the most by an Oriole before the All-Star break and are the most in franchise history by the end of June.
According to Elias, Davis tied Albert Pujols for the most home runs by the end of June since 2001, when Barry Bonds had 39 and Luis Gonzalez had 32.
“I don’t think it’s anything you can predict,” he said. “I think it’s something you obviously work hard toward in the offseason to try and carry it into spring training and then into the season. I’m not going up there to try and hit home runs. I’m just trying to put good swings on good pitches. I think that’s the biggest thing.
“Last night, I was a little too aggressive and it worked against me. Tonight, I was a little more patient and I saw the result of that.”
How much fun did he have tonight?
“A lot of fun,” he said. “I think any time you score a lot of runs and are able to relax and enjoy the game, it’s a lot of fun and takes a lot of pressure off everybody. Kind of let our bullpen rest tonight. Brit (Zach Britton) did a great job, threw the ball really well and gave us a chance to win.”
It always means a little more to beat the Yankees.
“Yeah, especially the fact that they’re in our division,” Davis said. “Any time you can win the series at home, they’re a tough opponent, and we get a chance to see them a bunch during the season, but we have a chance to go for the sweep tomorrow, and it would be huge for us.”
The Orioles finally broke out of their early-inning slump by scoring four runs in the first and five in the third. No threat of a no-hitter tonight.
“We actually talked about that earlier today, the fact that our offense has kind of been getting started late in the game,” Davis said. “A lot of that is due to the fact that we faced some pretty good pitching lately. We’ve been a little too aggressive, but I think tonight, you know, we straightened out our approach a little bit and we were able to get to them early.”
The Orioles provided ample support for Britton, who improved to 2-2.
“I thought I was really good through five. Kept my pitch count down,” he said. “It’s obviously easy to do that when they put up nine runs early for you. Kind of pitched to contact. So I would say the first five were good. But in order to go deep into a game, you need to make an adjustment if you want to be a consistent contributor in this rotation. You’ve got to go deep into games, especially with a nice lead.
“It was a good time to give the bullpen a rest. So I just need to be better at that. And that’s something I can work on for a mental standpoint of pitching to contact in that inning and later than that.
“Our offense did outstanding, our defense did outstanding. So as a starting pitcher, you want to reward them by gong deep in the game, keep momentum on your side. So it’s frustrating. I expect that game to at least be seven innings with the way my pitch count was, if I’m pitching to contact, not trying to be too fine that inning. So just make the adjustment.
“It’s not like I’m thinking, ‘Oh, here’s the sixth and I’ve got to get out of it.’ It’s just you kind of see the light at the end of the tunnel, and you are like, ‘Hey, I have a chance to go deep in this game,’ and I try to be a little bit too fine, rather than just do what I was doing the first five innings and make them make the adjustment. I was trying to be too fine and they started being patient, and I was walking guys, leaving the ball up. So it’s just an adjustment I’ll make.”