When it comes to team fielding percentage, the 2021 Orioles ranked among the American League leaders.
In fact, at .9869, the Orioles recorded the third-best fielding percentage in the AL and were sixth-best in the majors. This is among a host of stats and notes in the team’s 2021 season summary produced by the Orioles public relations department that the media recently received.
Houston rated first in the AL in fielding percentage and Oakland was second. In some other numbers, the Orioles were eighth in the AL in FanGraphs.com’s overall team defensive rating. They ranked 12th among the 15 teams in Defensive Runs Saved and 15th and last in double plays turned.
Per the Orioles, the club made 31 errors at home and 43 errors on the road. Orioles outfielders recorded 23 outfield assists, tied for the seventh-most in the AL and tied for the 10th-most in the majors.
As for some other notes:
* One run can make a big difference. For instance, the Orioles went 45-37 this season when scoring four runs or more. Of course, that is not their record when scoring exactly four runs; it accounts for wins with five, six and so on. But the club went just 7-73 when scoring three runs or less. So when they got to four, their odds of winning went way up.
* The Orioles (six) and Blue Jays (three) combined for nine home runs on June 19, the most in a game at Oriole Park since April 20, 2019 (Game 2) when 11 combined home runs were hit by the Orioles (three) and Twins (eight). The Orioles’ first six hits of the game were home runs. And, according to the Elias Sports Bureau, it was the second time in the Expansion Era (since 1961) in which a team’s first six hits were all home runs. Cleveland also did that on June 24, 1989 at Texas, when all six of the Indians hits in the game were home runs.
* There were eight players on the Orioles’ 2021 opening day roster for the first time: Dean Kremer (age 25), Ryan Mountcastle (24), Mac Sceroler (25), Dillon Tate (26), Ramón Urías (26), César Valdez (36), Tyler Wells (26) and Bruce Zimmermann (26).
* Outfielder Cedric Mullins batted .348/.383/.631 (49-for-141) in the first inning this season. Mullins’ 49 first-inning hits were the most in the majors and also the most in any single inning in the majors, one ahead of Trea Turner’s 48 first-inning hits. Mullins’ 22 first-inning extra-base hits also led all of baseball, one ahead of Shohei Ohtani’s 21. Mullins’ 22 extra-base hits in the first inning are tied for the second-most in Orioles history, along with Rafael Palmeiro in 1995, and trailing only Brady Anderson’s 24 in 1996.
* First baseman/designated hitter Trey Mancini hit his 99th and 100th career home runs on June 20 against Toronto. He became the fastest player in Orioles history, who began their career with Baltimore, to reach 100 career home runs, doing so in 531 games. It was his ninth career multi-home run game and second on the season (also May 19 versus Tampa Bay). He became the 28th player in O’s history to reach the 100-home run plateau.
The all-time top five in O’s homers:
431 - Cal Ripken Jr.
343 - Eddie Murray
303 - Boog Powell
268 - Brooks Robinson
263 - Adam Jones
According to Statcast numbers, five Orioles hits homers that went 440 feet or more last season:
Mancini, at 409 feet, led the club in average home run distance with Severino next at 407 feet and Santander at 406 feet.
O’s leaders average exit velocity (minimum 100 balls in play):
90.7 mph - Santander
89.9 mph - Kelvin Gutiérrez
89.6 mph - Urías
89.4 mph - Mullins
89.1 mph - Mountcastle
Three Orioles hit balls 114 mph or more in 2021. Leading the way at 114.6 mph were Mountcastle and Severino, and Gutiérrez came next at 114.4 mph.
John Means had a streak of six straight starts allowing one or fewer runs that began Sept. 8, 2020 and ran through April 7, 2021. That is tied with O’s legend and Hall of Famer Jim Palmer (May 20 through June 10, 1978) for the O’s club record. During this stretch, Means went 3-1 with a 1.27 ERA and 39 strikeouts. During Palmer’s stretch, he went 5-0 with a 0.18 ERA, allowing just one earned run over 50 1/3 innings. Palmer pitched four shutouts in this span.