With all the talk of Mark Reynolds’ homer and strikeouts totals and what they could be this year, we may have overlooked something: The guy has a decent track record of getting clutch hits.
“I like hitting with guys on. When you bat with runners in scoring position, it’s your job to drive them in. That’s the mentality I’ve had my whole career,” he said.
Yesterday, Reynolds came up with two men on and none out in the top of the seventh in a 1-1 tie. He promptly doubled in a run for the lead and added a ninth-inning RBI double.
He is now 2-for-2 on the year batting with runners in scoring position.
Last year, even as he batted just .198, Reynolds had an average of .276 when hitting with runners in scoring position - and his career mark is .264 with RISP.
Meanwhile, the Orioles’ defense was outstanding in the Tampa series and Reynolds thinks that could be an indication of more solid glove work to come.
“I hope so,” he said. “Nick made great plays, J.J. made some solid plays. All around, except for me in the ninth inning yesterday, we’ve been solid. We have guys that have been around and know what they are doing out there and it’s showing.”
Reynolds said there is a real good chemistry in the clubhouse now. I asked if that came before the wins or whether a 3-0 start helped build on that for the players.
“It’s a little of both,” Reynolds said. “Spring training was great. We had a lot of guys hanging out off the field, down at the beach. It was good bonding time and now we are here back north with 25 guys bonding well. Winning helps that, it goes hand in hand.”
Now Reynolds settles in for his first O’s opening day at Camden Yards.
“I’ve heard it’s a sellout,” he said. “Looking forward to a lot of energy and people cheering for us.”