Nearly three weeks of the 2023 season are in the books, and this year’s version of the Baltimore Orioles looks…good? The starting pitching has been (as expected!) a problem, both because of an unfortunate injury to Kyle Bradish and some poor performances from just about everyone not named Kyle Gibson. And the defense has left a lot to be desired. But what cannot be denied is the torrid start to the year for the Baltimore bats.
Jorge Mateo is leading a resurgent Orioles offense with plenty of help from all-world catcher Adley Rutschman. Meanwhile, Ryan Mountcastle has rediscovered his home run trot and Cedric Mullins has worked out some early-season struggles to become the table setter they needed. And don’t forget Austin Hays, who is just casually boasting an OPS over 1.000.
There is still work to be done, of course. Anthony Santander and Gunnar Henderson are both striking out a whole bunch with less power than expected. But once either one of them gets going, this could be the deepest lineup in the game. You may have expected them to be better than they were in 2022, but the amount of production so far has been impressive.
On top of that, the O’s bullpen once again looks like a weapon. Félix Bautista might be the best closer in baseball, Danny Coulombe and his slider are twisting hitters in knots, and Bryan Baker has brought his attitude to the mound.
It’s only been 16 games as of this writing, but the Orioles are on a 90+ win pace, and it sure feels like there is room to improve.
The guys get into all of it on this week’s episode, plus a review of the rookies, a heated discussion of the water-themed celebrations, and Eli’s upcoming work trip.
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