The message is pretty much the same after last night’s 12-2 loss to Houston as it was after Friday’s 15-8 loss: the Orioles’ legion of doubters continues to grow and it is up to them to prove them wrong.
Right now they are flunking a very important homestand. They lost twice to Boston and were blown out once. They’ve been blown out twice the last two nights by Houston losing by a combined 17 runs. They have been outscored 35-11 in their past three losses.
All losses count the same but don’t feel the same. Each time this year that the Orioles looked to be fading they started to win again. But will this time be different?
The numbers don’t paint an optimistic picture. The Orioles are 1-4 this homestand, 4-8 their last 12 games, 9-15 the last 24 and 16-19 since the All-Star break.
Can they begin to play better starting today? Sure they can, but will they?
More O’s-Houston notes:
* From Aug. 5-11, the O’s starting rotation produced seven straight quality starts and an ERA of 2.93. Now they have gone eight straight games without one with a rotation ERA of 8.82.
* O’s pitchers have allowed 32 runs and 39 hits in three games to Houston. In the last two games Houston scored 27 runs with on 32 hits and 15 walks with seven home runs.
* In the last two games, the O’s team ERA jumped from 4.23 to 4.39.
* O’s lefty reliever Donnie Hart has pitched seven scoreless innings allowing three hits in his first seven MLB appearances. Lefty batters are 1-for-15 against him.
* Ryan Flaherty pitched the ninth inning allowing two runs last night. Flaherty has now made appearances at first base (27 games), second base (179), shortstop (61), third base (115), left field (11), right field (26) and pitcher (1) in his career.
* Houston’s Alex Bregman went 3-for-6 with a double, homer and three RBIs last night. Over his past five games, he is 11-for-24 with three homers and nine RBIs. Over his past 14 games he is batting .349.
* Houston is 16-11 (.593) on the road since June 14, the best mark in the American League in that stretch.