At this point, beyond just getting wins to turn around a long run of losing, Orioles fans could use a few good outings from some of the Orioles' young starting pitchers for their collective psyche.
By now, maybe long before now, some fans have begun to doubt these young hurlers. They have seen them go back and forth between Triple-A and the majors too much and have seen good outings, but then watched that followed up with a poor outing.
They have seen them work with Rick Adair, the O's big league pitching coach. They have seen them work with Rick Peterson, the club's director of pitching development.
They just want them to have success and find consistency working with somebody. Something always seems to go wrong. Brad Bergesen was pitching great, and then Billy Butler lined one off his leg. Zach Britton was pitching really well then came up with shoulder problems.
Jake Arrieta looked like an ace on opening day, but now he's back in the minors. Brian Matusz made progress over the winter and pitched well for a while, but now he's back at Triple-A. Tommy Hunter hasn't pitched as well as he did when he was with Texas.
Will someone, anyone here, live up to expectations?
As Britton pitches tonight against Minnesota, here is another young hurler who appears to have talent and promise. He throws a fastball with life, a power sinker and good changeup. What is not to like?
Can Britton pick up tonight where he was early last season when he looked every bit like one of baseball's best young pitchers? Will any of the O's young starters get their act together before this season ends?
The fans need something to give them hope and something beyond a hanger to hang their hat on.
Maybe Britton can deliver that tonight, at least for one night.
Update: Britton pitched out of several jams tonight until he gave up a two-out, RBI double to No. 9 hitter Jamey Carroll to tie this game at 1-1 in the fourth inning. The game heads to the fifth even at 1-1.
Through four, Britton has allowed five hits and one run with four walks and one strikeout. He has thrown 84 pitches already.