Good morning, Birdland!
Look, it’s just one game. You can’t draw too many conclusions. Blah, blah, blah. But that was one impressive evening of baseball for the Orioles!
Max Fried was no match for the mighty O’s offense. Anthony Santander may (finally!) be figuring things out at the plate. Dean Kremer looked like the 2022 version. Brandon Hyde didn’t have to use any of his big guns in the bullpen. And the team stayed undefeated in series openers.
It was a good step forward for Kremer in that he didn’t allow any home runs against a good Atlanta offense. Six hits and three walks over six innings is still a lot of traffic on the bases, and he did get some help from two double plays. But he will definitely walk away from this one with positive feelings.
Fried is the NL favorite for Cy Young right now. He had allowed one total run in his first four starts of the year, and the Orioles touched him up for seven in the win. Only five of them were earned while the other two scored as a result of Fried’s own poor fielding. In both instances it was speed-related. Ryan McKenna beat out a chopper and then drew a wild pick-off throw. And later Jorge Mateo laid down a sacrifice bunt that Fried gathered and threw away towards first base. These O’s can beat you in multiple ways.
One of those ways is with power. Their 41 home runs are tied for ninth in MLB, and that total will grow at a much faster rate if Santander has actually found his power swing. He now has three home runs in his last two games.
And now, it’s time to take it national! The Orioles play two games on network TV this week. Tonight it’s FOX for a matchup between Kyle Bradish and Spencer Strider, and Sunday is NBC & Peacock for brunch with Tyler Wells and Bryce Elder. A win in either to snag the series would be lovely.
The Norfolk Tides are the best in the minors. The Orioles who were there say the club’s Triple-A team is ‘loaded.’ | The Baltimore Sun
It’s no mistake that the Tides are crushing every other Triple-A squad. At least half of the roster would fit in on a major league team right now. But it’s tough to break into one of the hottest teams in MLB.
Leftovers for breakfast | Roch Kubatko
Cedric Mullins can handle left-handed pitching again. What an odd career this guy is having!
Five Things I Liked (Or Didn’t Like) This Week, May 5 | FanGraphs
Jorge Mateo gets a little more love. This time for his instinctual glovework against Detroit last weekend.
Orioles take major step with convincing win over Braves | MLB.com
A common knock against the Orioles early on is that they “haven’t played anyone” as if fellow major league teams are equivalent to the junior varsity squad at your local high school. Sure, the strength of schedule is comparatively low, but part of the reason why is because the Orioles are beating those teams! That knocks down their record a decent amount in the season’s early days.
First 2023 mock draft: Expert predicts Round 1 picks | MLB Pipeline
The Orioles don’t pick until 17th overall. The back half of the first round, folks! It’s a whole new world when you win games at the major league level.
Is it your birthday? Happy birthday!
- Gerardo Parra turns 36. The outfielder was a trade deadline addition on the 2015 Orioles, but it didn’t go well. He had a 69 OPS+ over 55 subpar games and then left in free agency.
- Mike Kinkade celebrates his 50th. He played five different positions for the O’s between 2000 and 2001.
- Tom Bolton is 61. The southpaw wrapped up his eight-year MLB career with 22 relief appearances on the 1994 Orioles.
- Leo Burke is 89 years old. The Hagerstown native began his big league career right in Maryland, playing in 12 games for the Orioles between 1958 and ‘59.
This day in O’s history
2012 - Fenway Park. Extra Innings. Chris Davis on the mound. You know what happened.