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Birds Up, O's Down - 2014 Week 5

Who's hot and who's not for the Baltimore Orioles from April 28 - May 4

Nick Markakis now has a 12 game hitting streak
Nick Markakis now has a 12 game hitting streak
Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
Brad Brach Downnew_medium His Oriole debut was pretty much a Brach-down.
Zach Britton Upnew_medium Another three scoreless innings has his season ERA down to a sparkling 0.98.  Britton has allowed just 2 ER in 18.1 innings.
Wei-Yin Chen Only real knock against his start this week is that he needed 108 pitches to get through 5 innings.  The offense simply went cold and handed Chen a loss after a start of 5 IP and 2 ER on 6 hits.
Miguel Gonzalez Downnew_medium Did not throw a ton of strikes and, not coincidentally, left the game before it was 5 innings old.  Gonzalez walked 4 (struck out 7) and took the loss after allowing 3 earned runs on 6 hits.
Tommy Hunter Upnew_medium Three appearances totaling 2 innings (including two appearances in one day!).  Picked up two saves and a win, allowing just one baserunner.
Ubaldo Jimenez Upnew_medium Funny what happens when you don't walk everybody.....
Brian Matusz While he did get through his appearances unscathed, he walked four batters in just 2.1 innings.
Evan Meek Downnew_medium Completely fell off after a solid start and now finds himself demoted to AAA.
Bud Norris Upnew_medium Norris has been quietly solid this season.  He's got just 7 walks in almost 30 innings and now boasts an ERA under 4.00 for the first time as an Oriole.  He does allow quite a few hits, but he hasn't had a poor start since early April.
Darren O'Day Maybe we saw a bit of "vintage" O'Day this week?
Troy Patton Back from a suspension and immediately allowed a run, but we'll give him another week to adjust himself to pitching again.
Chris Tillman Downnew_medium Tillman should know, after watching teammate Jimenez pitch, that walks kill.  He's gone two consecutive starts without completing 6 innings.
Ryan Webb Sure, he was victimized by some bad defense (Lough would have had that.....), but he really doesn't seem like a closer option based on what he's shown thus far.
Steve Clevenger 1-7, but scored both times he reached base this week.
Matt Wieters Upnew_medium Continues to stroke the ball as everyone thought he would when he was drafted.  Added another four hits this week, including a walk off home run.
Ryan Flaherty Almost no playing time with Machado's return, even though 2B is still a question mark.  Seems pretty clear that he needs to up his game to stick with the big club.
J.J. Hardy Upnew_medium Looks to be getting back in a groove after separate injuries slowed any momentum at the plate.  Hardy had six hits (.353 average), including a double and 3 RBI.  His OPS is still a paltry .602, but he added 20 points to his BA in a one week.  If he keeps hitting, the numbers will certainly improve (although power is questionable, especially if he's still dealing with back soreness).
Manny Machado Considering he's essentially still in spring training, don't look into that 1-9 start too hard.  He made contact in each PA.
Jonathan Schoop Downnew_medium Appeared to make the cut following Machado's return - the Orioles returned Steve Lombardozzi to AAA instead.  Didn't respond with any sort of bang though, just 2 for 12 this week.
Jemile Weeks Didn't get much playing time, as the only real open position is 2B and the team rosters three of them.
Nelson Cruz Cruz giveth and Cruz taketh away.  He's money at the plate, with bombs here and bombs there, but his defense is atrocious.  I try not to throw in too many opinions in this column, but maybe it's time for the Orioles to try moving Young for an OF that can actually play defense and hit?  Young and Cruz are essentially DH-only guys and Lough certainly isn't hitting well enough to get regular playing time.  LF is currently a huge question mark.
Adam Jones Downnew_medium Hasn't walked since April 19th and really looks like he's pressing too hard at the plate.  He's taking some wild swings and plate discipline has been a serious issue.  Hopefully he returns to form sooner rather than later.  We all know what he's capable of, but he needs to lay off all of those pitches away before anyone starts to give him anything he can hit.
David Lough Downnew_medium He's the only defensive solution to the LF problem, but he just can't hit well enough to man the position daily.  After a 1-6 week, his OPS is down below .500 and he now has more Ks than hits.
Nick Markakis Upnew_medium Markakis looks to be heating up a bit.  He defense is still a large question mark considering how slow he's looked in RF, but he added seven hits this week, including 3 for extra bases.  He now has a 12 game hitting streak.
Steve Pearce Upnew_medium Should probably move him to the infielder list.  Pearce rejoined the team after denying the Blue Jays and promptly went in at 1B.  He responded with a couple of RBI singles and two stellar defensive plays.  The rest of his week was hardly as pretty, but he has some time to elevate his play as the regular 1B.
Delmon Young Upnew_medium Fairly limited playing time, but had hits in 4 of his 5 games played this week and went 2-2 as a pinch hitter.
Disabled List
Chris Davis Reporting little to no discomfort and could possibly be back before the Orioles originally thought.  That's good news!