A glass half-full perspective about the Orioles right now, as they come into this series finale against the Brewers needing a win to avoid their first sweep of the season, is that if you’ve made it into June without being swept, you’re not doing too bad. One reason why the Orioles are where they are in the standings right now is that they have not yet had a losing streak longer than three games - and that only happened once.
This is a team that has done well overall this season, even with a real drag on their performance over the last couple of weeks. As long as you ignore the amazing record of the Rays, you can feel good about where the Orioles sit at this moment.
A glass half-empty perspective about the Orioles right now is that it doesn’t matter very much if you’re good for the first two months of the season if you’re not good enough to keep being good for the remaining four months of the season. Sometimes a team plays over its potential thanks to players playing over their own potential, and if that doesn’t last and there aren’t other players stepping up, well, you get what you get.
As ever, the outcome of today’s game will only make for one win or one loss on the team’s record. If they lose, it doesn’t mean that the party is over. It could add further support to burgeoning trends that have cost the Orioles lately, or not. If the Orioles win, it doesn’t mean that their recent problems have been solved. It could be the start of a reversal of fortunes for some guys, or not. A win would certainly be better than a loss at warding away some of the gloom.
The pitching staff really getting blasted by teams who’ve had bad offenses to this point, like the Guardians and Brewers, is the thing that really bums me out. It feels like internal reinforcements are coming soon for the offense. Help for either the rotation or the bullpen is reliant on some guys getting things sorted out at Norfolk, or a guy who is actually good enough to make a difference being acquired in a trade.
Orioles fans are plenty acquainted with what happens when you’ve got a starting rotation that’s just not good enough. Though it is possible to squeeze out a playoff bid in spite of that - they did it in 2016 - it’s not preferable, and it’s more likely to end up with disappointment if not outright disaster.
- Adam Frazier - 2B
- Adley Rutschman - DH
- Anthony Santander - RF
- Austin Hays - CF
- Gunnar Henderson - SS
- Ryan Mountcastle - 1B
- Ryan O’Hearn - LF
- Ramón Urías - 3B
- James McCann - C
Kyle Bradish makes the start for the Orioles. When it comes to Bradish, I find that his bad starts stick out in my mind more than his good ones, so it always surprises me when I look at his season ERA of 4.13 and find that actually, when run through the park/league adjustment for ERA+, comes out at 103, or slightly above average.
The team has won three of the last five games he’s started, including a fine outing against a tough Texas offense on May 28. Bradish’s good days have been good for the Orioles this year. So, you know, hopefully this can be another good day against a Brewers offense that hasn’t been good this year. Not that this stopped them from scoring double digits last night.
- Christian Yelich - LF
- Willy Adames - SS
- Rowdy Tellez - DH
- William Contreras - C
- Owen Miller - 2B
- Jon Singleton - 1B
- Brian Anderson - RF
- Luis Urías - 3B
- Joey Wiemer - CF
The two Urías brothers are once again in opposing lineups. It’s a nice story.
Orioles hitters at least had the excuse yesterday of facing a recent Cy Young winner who maybe found some of that form last night. There’s no such excuse with today’s Brewers starter, Colin Rea. This is a guy against whom there ought to be a breakout performance. If the O’s hitters are up for this task, the team should have a good chance of avoiding a sweep. If not, Bernie Brewer will probably be waving around a broom after the game.