Cody Asche on O's hitting coaches and Santander's hot-hitting month

One way to show statistically how good the Orioles' offense has been this year is to look at the numbers from Monday morning, after back-to-back games when the team scored one run each.

The Orioles still led the majors in runs per game heading into last night’s game and by a big margin. Heading into the Guardians series, the Orioles were scoring 5.23 runs per game and Phillies were second at 5.06.

The Orioles and Guardians (5.05 runs per game) are the only two American League teams averaging 5.00 or better runs per game as of game time Monday. Baltimore led the majors in homers, slugging and extra-base hits. They also ranked first in the AL and second to the Dodgers in team OPS.

The team has three hitting coaches and they seem to work very well together as a well-oiled machine in getting hitters prepared. Prepared so much so that recently they hammered aces like Zack Wheeler and Luis Gil. No, they didn’t hit every quality starter, but they have held their own most nights.

As for their titles, Ryan Fuller and Matt Borgschulte are listed as co-hitting coaches while Cody Asche is listed as offensive strategy coach.

All three wear many hats, working with players in the cages, working on game prep and strategy and working to get the Orioles to produce more runs than any club in the sport on a per-game-basis.

Asche talked to Baltimore reporters Sunday morning in Houston about the three-headed tandem coaching the O’s hitters.

Asche, just 33, a vet of five major league seasons is a fast-riser in the coaching ranks. The 2021 season was his first as a coach and he worked in the Phillies organization. The O’s hired him the next season for their minor league system and now he’s in year two on the big league staff.

“I think the last two years have been a growing process with Borgs and Fuller and I,” he said. “Any job you add people to it, it takes some time to figure out who does what good and how to communicate and work well with each other. That is kind of our strength. There is zero ego in that room.

“We all kind of gravitate to things we do well. We ask for help when we don’t do things well. And I think that is what is really beneficial to our team in general, to our players. We love to prepare. We love to have our players prepared.”

They sure do well at that. They have the numbers to show it.

Asche was asked about Anthony Santander and how his bat has really taken off this month.

“Tony just, it took some time at the beginning of the year to figure out who he was and how he was going to operate,” he said. “Tony’s strength is that he is really intelligent and he knows how pitchers are going to attack him. He made some slight swing tweaks, I guess, or maybe just a little more focus on some parts of his swing right around St. Louis and since then his OPS is like 1.000. It is not just June, but kind of like the end of May where you saw that happening.”

Asche is right in that Santander hit a couple of homers late in May but it is this month where his bat has really soared. In 22 games heading into Monday, Santander is slashing .284/.333/.682/.1.015 with 11 homers and 22 RBIs.

“He is really a joy to watch. His preparation and understanding how he thinks the pitchers are going to attack him. Then you watch the game and talk through at-bats with him. That inner battle that he really sees with the pitcher. Pitcher vs. hitter, that is Tony like every day. Figuring out what is coming next. Anticipating. Getting his pitch and driving it. I love how he prepares, I love watching him play and I’ll tell stories about coaching Tony Santander my whole career," said Asche. 

The affection between a coach and player really comes through there from Asche when talking about Santander.

“Just his overall personality. He’s very unique, one of a kind,” he said. “Personally, I don’t think like the league in general really appreciates him as much as they should. Especially like coming into All-Star type stuff. That would be my guy. I love him.”

About last night: Yep, the offense struggled for the third day in a row, creating some further panic in the comments section. The Orioles have scored four runs the last three games and now they have a season-long four-game losing streak.

They are 49-29 and now two games behind the Yankees for the AL East lead. The Yankees begin a series with the Mets tonight while the Orioles try to end their slide in Game 2 of their series with Cleveland.




Orioles sign Cooper, health updates on Holliday an...
Tackling more Orioles topics after they left the r...

By accepting you will be accessing a service provided by a third-party external to