It should come as no surprise that Chris Davis’ phone has been blowing up in the last few days as friends and family congratulate him on his good start. Of all the well wishes, one stood out to him.
“Lot of people from back home saying what’s up and they’re proud of me. My uncle told me that he was proud how I was playing but that he loved me regardless of what I was doing on the field. I thought that kind of puts things in perspective,” Davis said this morning in the Orioles clubhouse.
He is 7-for-11 with three doubles, three homers and 11 RBIs. His slugging percentage right now is 1.727 and he is 6-for-6 with five extra-base hits against right-handed pitching. The last two games, he is 6-for-7 with two homers and eight RBIs.
No Oriole has homered in the first four games of a season. In major league history, just three players have done it: Willie Mays in 1971, Mark McGwire in 1998 and Nelson Cruz in 2011.
He leads the AL in batting average, RBIs, slugging, extra-base hits and total bases, but he is not taking even a second to look at any stats sheet.
“No, I haven’t. I’ve heard the talk,” he said. “I know I’m driving the ball well the other way and doing my job right now. I try to stay outside the numbers. It’s something that is constantly thrown in your face in this game, whether you are doing bad or good. I just try to keep a level head and keep getting Ws.
“I think a little bit (this is a carryover from the end of last season). You know early in spring training, I was rolling over some balls (and grounding out). I think the last couple of games, I started letting the ball travel a little bit and am using all fields. That is huge for me. Not trying to do too much, just taking what they give me and trying to get the job done.”
Davis said despite the team putting up 20 runs on 15 extra-base hits in the Tampa Bay series, the offense still has room to grow and improve.
“I think there are times we can still be more patient. What comes to my mind for me was the first game,” he said. “I grounded into a double play with the bases loaded on a pitch that probably wasn’t a great pitch to hit. A few other times, we had chances to score but were a little too aggressive.”
But the Orioles offense did show a look at how good it can potentially be in the opening three-game series. How good can it get?
“It remains to be seen, but it looks good so far,” Davis said. “We have a lot of power but also a lot of versatility. Lot of guys that handle the bat well can hit and run. We have some speed. The possibilities are endless to be honest with you.”
For now, the Orioles are excited to be tied for first place with Boston and about to play in front of their home fans for the first time this season.
“To be a part of this city and bring the winning back last year was awesome, to see the way the fans responded,” Davis said. “I think Craig Sager was out there and that meter (that measures crowd decibel level) was going nuts. It was something special and these fans have been waiting a long time for it.”