O’s hitting coach Terry Crowley gave a short, but honest answer to the question.
I asked him if he thought Nick Markakis’ comments about players needing a better approach at the plate had anything to do with the improved O’s offense in recent games.
“Um, probably not,” Crowley said.
So what is the difference with the offense in the past week?
“I think they all basically look the same to me. We always have tried to practice patience on balls that are not ones we want to swing at and aggression on balls that have a big part of the strike zone or that we know the pitcher possesses and he’s going to throw.
“This is what we do for a living. Of course, there’s a relief that the hitters are getting hits and scoring runs. Early on in the season there was unbelievable pitching that we faced for 25, 30 days in a row.
“The weather wasn’t always beneficial to hitting. It was cold and windy and the pitching was real good. And, not that my guys can’t handle that, they can, but as a team, nobody was red hot so that hurt. Now, it’s true baseball weather and I got a few hot bats in the lineup right now and stuff like that you feed off.”
Over the last six games, the Orioles have scored 37 runs on 72 hits with a team average of .330. In the last four games, the Orioles are batting .435 (20 for 46) with runners in scoring position.
Crowley talked about Adam Jones’ sizzling bat. During his eight-game hitting streak, Jones is batting .424 with four homers and 9 RBI.
“Jonesy is swinging the bat great right now. You’ve got to remember, he had a good year last year. He like most of us had a rough month. People make a statement that he’s regressed, he hasn’t regressed.
“It’s his third year playing every day. We have guys his age in Double-A. You have to keep everything in perspective and not panic. It would have been nice if some other guys were hot while he was not.
“That didn’t happen, so, you know, when the smoke clears, Jonesy is going to be as good or better than he was last year. Normal growth for a young, young hitter playing in the American League East.
“That’s a tired expression and everybody says it, but that is the truth. If you guys do your jobs like I do mine, you will see what you face when you get out of the East and you’d be honest and compare it if it’s what you face in the East.”
Some other O’s hot hitters:
Izturis: Has six hits his last 15 at bats.
Lugo: Has 10 hits over his last 30 at bats.
Markakis: Batting .390 over his last 11 games.
Patterson: Went 6 for 13 with two doubles vs. Washington and is hitting .357 over his past seven games.
Tejada: The last six games is 13 for 27 (.481) with a homer and 7 RBI.
Wieters: Is hitting .421 during six-game hitting streak.