A couple of notes on the offense

Earlier today, I posted an entry about the Orioles' starting pitching struggles. They have been significant and probably the biggest reason for the club's 6-21 record over the past 27 games.

But the O's inconsistent offense has been just that recently as well.

During that 27-game stretch, the O's are batting just .195 (43-for-221) with runners in scoring position.

The Orioles have had just one game with 10 or more hits over the last seven contests and scored just 33 runs on the 10-game road trip leading into the All-Star break.

The Orioles were shut out twice on that trip and hit just .176 (12-for-68) with runners in scoring position - and five of those 12 hits came in the last game of the trip at Boston.

We will find out later today if Vlad Guerrero is dropped down in the batting order. He has just five extra-base hits over his past 40 games since May 22 and his average has dropped from .309 to .279 in that time.

It's not all bad right now.

Derrek Lee may have started to find his home run swing on the road. He hit three longballs over his last five games and five in the last 16 contests.

Nick Markakis is now just two hits away from 1,000 for his career and will become the 14th player to reach 1,000 in an Orioles uniform. He has hit safely in 27 of 29 games, batting .392 in that time.

Maybe the O's offense will get it together on this homestand. They do average 4.2 runs per game and bat .263 at home compared to 3.8 and .253 on the road.

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