So remind me again. Is the Orioles first baseman’s name Chris, Crush or Crash Davis?
Call him what you want, but just don’t call Chris Davis late to get into the batter’s box.
Davis has set a major league record for most RBIs in the first four games of a season with 16, crushing (pun intended) the previous mark of 12.
He has tied three others to hold the major league record for homering in each of his team’s first four games. No player in big league history has homered in the first five games.
He has driven in 55 percent of the club’s 29 runs so far. He’s going so well that it might be hard to notice the fast start other hitters are off to. Adam Jones is 10-for-19 with four RBIs and a slugging percentage of .684. Jones has three games of three hits already.
“I don’t need the attention,” Jones said of being overshadowed by Davis. “Let CD keep swinging. I just want to get on base and score runs. That’s my game.”
Meanwhile Davis’ game includes the ability to hit the ball out to all fields. In St. Petersburg, he homered to left off the Rays’ Jeremy Hellickson and his grand slam off lefty Tyler Robertson in the eighth yesterday went to left-center.
Davis said he was looking away against the left-hander and he went that way with the pitch for his second career slam.
According to ESPN Stats and Info, three of Davis’ four homers have come on pitches on the outer third of the plate or further outside, and he is a robust 5-for-8 in at-bats ending in those pitches.
Davis has shown this type of power on pitches away in the past. Last year, he ranked among the top 10 in slugging percentage (.466) and home runs (12) on outside pitches.
“He’s always been a guy that’s had pop the other way,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. “A ball that you hit 470 feet and a ball that you hit 360 or 370 feet to left-center counts the same.
“Chris knows who he is. I think he’s gotten better at that. His goal is to try and remain consistent. He’ll be the first to tell you that none of us have figured it all out.
“When guys are going well, Jim (Presley, Orioles hitting coach) wants them to make mental notes. What are you feeling? What is going on mentally right now so you can revert back to that feeling? Right now, the last thing you want Chris to do is get overly analytical. See it and hit it.”
He is, as he’s led the Orioles to 29 runs and at least six in each game so far. The club has a team average of .320, which includes 12 doubles, six homers and a .524 slugging percentage.
Opening day gave the fans their first chance to cheer the team at home this year. At one point last season, Jones called for the fans to come out in bigger numbers and make more noise.
Mission accomplished on that front, he said after Friday’s game.
“I’m seeing exactly what I wanted from the fans. What they are seeing out of us is that every single day we go out and bust our tails. We run hard down the line. We run hard every time we step on the field. I think the fans respect that. Winning helps, but I think they really appreciate the effort we are giving every day,” Jones said.