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Over/unders for the Orioles’ second half

Did you predict the Orioles strong first half? Take a shot at these over/unders for after the All-Star break.

MLB: All Star-Home Run Derby Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

I took some time today to read over the Over/Unders that I posed in 2019, 2021, and 2022. If Baltimore’s 54-35 record hasn’t sold you on their progress, a few of the old questions should make it painfully clear.

The prompts below will not focus on draft picks, starts by Matt Harvey, or games played by Jahmai Jones. Cedric Mullins did squeak out that 30/30 season in 2021, but Chris Davis failed to hit .200 back in 2019.

The Orioles have completed 89 of 162 games, so keep that in mind when providing your answers. Take a few moments to think things over and share your thoughts in the comment below!

Home runs by Adley Rutschman: Over/under 23.5

Adley Rutschman captivated America with his switch-hitting in the Home Run Derby. Rutschman demonstrated plenty of power in Seattle, and he ranks third on the Orioles with 12 homers this season.

Rutschman tallied 13 homers and 35 doubles in his first 70 games last season. The doubles are down this year, but he’s slashing .273/.376/.423. The All-Star will always take a walk, but his power numbers could tick up in the second half this year.

Austin Hays batting average: Over/under .300

Batting average may not carry the same weight these days, but Hays ranks fourth in the American League with a .314 average. The high number definitely helped Hays reach Seattle, and the All-Star starter has delivered plenty of big moments for the Orioles this season.

Luis Arráez has history on his mind in the NL, but only five qualified batters are hitting above .300 in the American League. Hays has battled injuries throughout his time in Baltimore, and nagging problems have impacted his play in the past. The 28-year-old has a head start with the .314 average, but can he hold on?

Major Leaguers acquired by trade: Over/under 1.5

The Orioles are firmly in the playoff hunt after 89 games. Baltimore holds a significant advantage in the wild-card standings, and an AL East crown remains in play. The Birds could use some help down the stretch, but will Mike Elias bring in reinforcements from outside the organization?

The extra wild card keeps more teams in play and fewer clubs from kicking off a fire sale. Baltimore could use some help in the rotation, but the Birds still have Grayson Rodriguez at Norfolk and John Means set to return at some point. Jordan Westburg, Colton Cowser, and a hot-hitting Ryan O’Hearn might eliminate the need for a big bat.

Baltimore could use another reliever in the bullpen, and both Mychal Givens and Dillon Tate feel like long shots at this point. Starters and relievers represent the most likely trade targets, but will the Orioles bring in multiple players? They have the prospects to wheel and deal in this seller’s market.

Orioles final place in standings: Over/under 1st Wild Card spot

This one sounds confusing, so I’ll clear it up. Over represents an AL East Title, under means the team finished second or below in the wild-card standings, and a push signifies the Orioles taking the first wild card spot.

Baltimore finished the first half tied in the loss column with Tampa Bay, but the Rays hold a four win advantage. The teams will face each other eight more times, so this all can be sorted out on the field.

The Birds hold a five game advantage in the wild card over Houston and Toronto. New York sits one game further back, while Boston and Seattle remain in play. Falling below the first wild card spot would certainly represent a disappointment right now, but most fans would have signed up for any playoff appearance before the season started.

Rapid Fire:

Remaining games played by Ryan Mountcastle: Over/under 38.5

The Orioles have 73 games remaining this season. Ryan O’Hearn has hit the ball hard since joining the O’s, and he consistently bats cleanup in the lineup. Mountcastle returned from his bout with vertigo right before the break, but it’s difficult to see Hyde sitting O’Hearn. Anthony Santander and Ramón Urías have also played first base this season, so Mountcastle will need starts as the designated hitter.

Complete games by starting pitchers: Over/under 0.5

A staple question at 0.5. Tyler Wells, Kyle Gibson, and Kyle Bradish all feel capable on a particularly efficient night, but a complete game still feels like a stretch

Wins: Over/under: 94.5

The Orioles are currently on pace for 98 wins this season, but will they maintain it? Feel free to get crazy and throw out a bonus prediction of over 98! Triple digits, anyone!?

MLB games played by Heston Kjerstad: Over/under 0.5

Kjerstad has thrived at Triple-A with a .323/.414/.602 line after 25 games. Would the Orioles grant a cup of coffee during a playoff push?

MLB Starts by Grayson Rodriguez: Over/Under 7.5

Rodriguez has looked the part of a big leaguer pitcher over his last six starts at Triple-A. Cole Irvin has earned a few more opportunities, but Rodriguez could return shortly after play resumes.