Baltimore Orioles: Offense heating up as team returns home

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 05: Manny Machado
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 05: Manny Machado /

The Baltimore Orioles open a three-game homestand tonight against the Toronto Blue Jays. Their offense has started to show signs of life over the past four games.

Over the years, the Baltimore Orioles have relied on their offense to help them win games. They’ve lived and died by the home run ball. After opening the season versus the Twins and Astros, scoring a combined 14 runs, their 23 scored in the Yankees series should help boost their confidence a bit.

More from Call to the Pen

Now, the Orioles will return home after a 3-and-4 road trip that could have gone much worse. Winning three-of-four in New York was huge for this teams demeanor, coming back to Baltimore.

In talking with the media after the game, outfielder Craig Gentry said,

"“It was huge for us. We were a little down after the Houston series but I thought we definitely battled the last two days there and just couldn’t come out with anything.”"

Gentry, who made a game-saving catch in the bottom of the tenth inning, singled home the eventual winning run in the top of the 12th inning. He continued,

"“But we showed what type of team we are in this series. We played two long ones and just fought the whole time. We were in a big hole today and just kept fighting and it just shows a lot of character on the team.”"

The team fought the entire series and was able to turn in a .240 batting average (41-for-171). Players like Manny Machado, who went 7-for-19 and had an OBP of .429 in the series came up big. Trey Mancini continued to show why he should stay at the top of the lineup. He went 6-for-19 in the series with an OBP of .419. Anthony Santander got into the mix as well, going 5-for-18, including his first Major League home run.

Shifting gears to focus on Toronto

More from Call to the Pen

Over the past two seasons, the Orioles have been able to pull out 21 wins over the Blue Jays, with just 17 losses. However, just because the O’s have won more games over the past two seasons, doesn’t mean it’ll be a cakewalk this year.

The offense should be able to roll along, as Jays starters have pitched to a 4.85 ERA in 55.2 innings. Although, that’s still less than the Orioles group of starters who have pitched to a 5.25 ERA in 48 innings.

Beating up on their starters could be vital for winning the series. In 33.1 innings this season, the Jays bullpen has pitched to a 2.97 ERA, only allowing 11 earned runs.

And of course, excluding Chris Tillman and Mike Wright, the Orioles starters will need to keep rolling. The combination of Dylan Bundy, Andrew Cashner, and Kevin Gausman, pitched to a 2.12 ERA in 17 innings their second time through. Collectively, they struck-out 16 batters and walked just six.

Next: The Norfolk Express could be gassing up again

One thing the Orioles will have going for them is that the Blue Jays are hitting just .223 against right-handed pitchers. The probable’s listed for this series are Bundy, Cashner, and Gausman. So, with the offense staying hot, the Orioles shouldn’t have any problems climbing back to the .500 mark.