The Orioles went through their off-day without making any changes to their roster.
There’s still time to tweak the pitching staff before the series opener against the Yankees at Camden Yards.
I’ve seen a lot in my 25 years on the beat, much of it good and some stuff that made me rub my eyes and wish I could cleanse my mind.
Pretty much the entire 2018 season needs to be burned like unwanted film. And that 30-3 loss to the Rangers in 2007. And every attempt to interview Erik Bedard.
Losing a 10-7 lead in the seventh inning in Game 1 of Saturday’s doubleheader against the Blue Jays was a real gut punch to the Orioles. Surrendering 11 runs and 11 hits in the seventh inning of Game 2, with the Jays no-hit for the first six before sending 16 batters to the plate during an insane rally, was a cinder block to the skull.
Can’t get any lower? The Orioles trailed 16-4 after the third inning Sunday afternoon and lost 22-7. That’s 44 runs allowed in three games. That’s just not done.
The Orioles have the worst ERA in the majors at 5.93, the worst WHIP at 1.49 and the worst average against at .272. The 815 earned runs allowed are 100 more than the Diamondbacks. The 227 home runs also are the most.
Blame gets spread like sandwich condiments when a team has the worst record in baseball, but breakdowns on the mound are an obvious starting point.
The Orioles started rookies in both ends of the doubleheader, with Dean Kremer recalled as the 29th man and returned to Triple-A Norfolk and Keegan Akin tossing six hitless innings in the nightcap. Rule 5 pick Tyler Wells had a blown save in Game 1. Tanner Scott was charged with six runs in the seventh inning in Game 2 and Manny Barreda, a 32-year-old rookie, allowed an inherited runner to score and two of his own and was optioned. Teoscar Hernández hit a 445-foot home run over the home bullpen.
Rookie Zac Lowther started Sunday and allowed seven runs in two innings. Rookie Spenser Watkins, recalled between games of the doubleheader, allowed seven runs in one-third of an inning. Rookie Mike Baumann, making his second major league appearance, allowed six runs in three innings.
Rookie Eric Hanhold, making his first major league appearance since 2018, allowed two runs in 1 2/3.
You can see where I’m going with this.
The Orioles should be going younger and evaluating their rookies, but it can get ugly.
Rookie Alexander Wells is starting tonight. The Yankees are starting Cy Young candidate Gerrit Cole. Every night feels like a plea to the reverse lock theory.
And it isn’t just the rookies. Manager Brandon Hyde doesn’t know what he’s going to get with his “track record” relievers. One of them, left-hander Paul Fry, has allowed six runs and five hits with five walks in three innings with Norfolk since his demotion.
“We’ve swung the bat pretty well,” Hyde said following Sunday’s loss. “Game 1 (Saturday), swung the bat great. We scored seven runs (Sunday) again today. We’re just not pitching well against a good lineup.”
They’re going to be confronted tonight by another one.
“It’s mid-September and we’re in evaluation mode right now,” Hyde said. “A lot of these guys are appearing in the big leagues, don’t have many appearances early on in their career, and there’s decisions to be made during the year, after the year, spring training, etc. And this is just part of it is seeing what we have and letting them get experience in the big leagues and seeing how they react and deal with some adversity and try to get through innings, etc.”
* The Orioles have promoted shortstop Gunnar Henderson from Single-A Aberdeen to Double-A Bowie.
The Baysox are battling for a playoff spot and the Orioles are handing them the No. 4 prospect in the system per MLBPipeline.com and Baseball America.
Henderson batted .312/.369/.574 with 11 doubles, a triple, eight home runs and 39 RBIs in 35 games with Single-A Delmarva and .230/.343/.432 with 16 doubles, three triples, nine home runs and 35 RBIs in 65 games with Aberdeen.
Bowie infielder Terrin Vavra currently is unavailable due to a sore hip.
* Baseball America updated its Top 100 prospects list and Norfolk catcher Adley Rutschman remains No. 1. He hasn’t provided any reasons to lower him.
Rutschman has played in 28 games since moving up to Triple-A Norfolk and he’s batting .323/.415/.495 with eight doubles, three home runs and 11 RBIs in 118 plate appearances.
Grayson Rodriguez is No. 7, still giving the Orioles the top position player and pitcher in the minors.
Left-hander DL Hall, out for the remainder of the season with a stress reaction in his left elbow, is No. 43. Henderson is 83rd.