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Ryan Mountcastle can hit, and not just against the Blue Jays

Ryan Mountcastle’s northern dominance only amplified an impressive stretch after returning from the injured list.

MLB: Baltimore Orioles at Toronto Blue Jays John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

He’s got your picture, he’s coming with you, Dear Maria, count him in!

Ryan Mountcastle traveled north of the border and pop-punk’d the Blue Jays over a four game set. The Florida native continued his dominance over Toronto with a 4-for-4 effort yesterday afternoon. Mountcastle finished 11-for-13 and tied a club record for base hits in a four-game series.

The series represented the latest chapter in Mountcastle’s dominance over the Blue Jays. The righty has slashed .330/.394/.643 over 48 career games against the AL East foe. His big swings lifted Baltimore to another series victory on the road.

The four-game stats are fun but also indicative of something greater. Brandon Hyde was kidding when he said he planned to hang a massive Rogers Centre banner in Mountcastle’s locker, but the skipper was dead serious when he said “there’s some intent in that swing.”

The former first-round pick has done more than just carve up the Blue Jays. Mountcastle is 23-for-50 since returning from a vertigo inspired trip to the IL. The 26-year-old has resembled the player all of Birdland hoped he would be this season.

Mountcastle returned from the injured list unsure of his current role. Ryan O’Hearn had usurped the starting spot at first after routinely posting exit velocities that rank among the league’s best. Anthony Santander and Ramón Urías had played some first base, and the Orioles were rotating several impressive hitters through the DH slot.

Mountcastle could have folded in that moment. Instead, he stepped up when the Orioles needed it most. Mountcastle’s resurgence has helped offset an injured Cedric Mullins and a cooled, then injured Aaron Hicks.

Colton Cowser delivered a clutch double off the bench yesterday, but the rookie has struggled to adjust at the plate. Cowser and Jordan Westburg will provide some inconsistent production while adjusting to major league pitching, and guys like Urías and Adam Frazier can go hot or cold at a moment’s notice.

Mountcastle’s return may prevent a reunion with Trey Mancini, but it’s hardly a problem for the Orioles. O’Hearn can play some right field, and Gunnar Henderson should spend almost every day in the field with Jorge Mateo approaching rock bottom. Brandon Hyde will find time for both first basemen if the players demand it.

Mountcastle has only homered twice since returning on July 9, but he’s still a guy that can change the game with one swing of the bat. His deceptive speed provides a boost on the basepaths, and his three walks in the Toronto series show just how clearly he’s seeing the ball right now.

The righty specifically credited laying off tough pitches for his quality at bats up north, and the Orioles are a better baseball team when Mountcastle watches pitches out of the zone.

It appears to be go time for Mountcastle. His career .293/.360/.558 slash line in August is second to only the month of June, and his recent totals make it easy to expect another impressive performance during the dog days of summer.

Mountcastle does not reach free agency until the end of the 2026 season. He will remain a key member of the team’s core as long as he produces at the plate. Mountcastle can further cement his place in Baltimore’s long term plans with a strong stretch that carries into the postseason.

Mountcastle’s early season struggles appear to be in the rearview mirror. There is no way of knowing exactly how vertigo impacted his play, but Mountcastle sported a half smile yesterday when telling reporters “it’s easier when you’re just seeing one baseball instead of three.” He called it a blessing and said he feels a lot better.

A healthy Ryan Mountcastle certainly appears to be a blessing for the Orioles and should strike fear into the rest of the American League.