The Orioles are doing it again. They are playing well late in the season.
They went 34-23 in the last 57 games last year for a winning percentage of .596. After Thursday’s win at Detroit, they are 19-13 in their last 32 games this year for a winning percentage of .594.
They just started a bit later this season. In 2010, they began the 57-game run to end the year with Buck Showalter’s first game on Aug. 3. Their current 32-game winning run began Aug. 22 with a four-game sweep at Minnesota.
Last year, they won mostly because of pitching, and now they are doing it with some offense thrown in.
The team ERA over the last 32 games is 4.69, but the Orioles are scoring 4.9 runs per game with 38 homers in that span.
Last year, the Orioles went 14-13 at the end against American League East opponents. During the current winning stretch, they are 12-12 against the East.
But here is a big difference between the two finishing kicks: This time, we won’t see the glass as half full.
The Orioles’ great pitching run and winning ways under Buck late last year had plenty of fans and reporters thinking this 2011 O’s squad was potentially an 81-win team.
Then they started 30-31 and a .500 record looked very doable. Before long, we were shocked back to reality amid injuries, poor performances and a lack of progression from the young pitchers.
But maybe it’s not all bad and we are starting to see some of that now. The Orioles have some talent to build around, just as we figured back on opening day.
But now we know the club’s rotation depth is not nearly good enough. The biggest failing of the front office going into this year was not compiling enough rotation depth to withstand what happened with the injuries and lack of progress from some of the pitchers.
It’s almost always about the pitching, and it seems to be that way again, as the Orioles once again try to produce some future winning ways
They need a lot more starting pitching. They need quality and quantity.
Even winning games late in the season this year won’t mask that issue.
What is your take?: What do you make of the Orioles’ late-season surge this year? What does it mean, if anything, to the Orioles’ future?