Originally written June 03, 2013 on isportsweb.com:
Can the success last? That’s the question that all Baltimore Orioles fans have to be asking themselves right about now, a day after the birds completed yet another late comeback to beat the Tigers 4-2, as Chris Davis hit is league-leading 20th homer of the season and Nate McLouth was once again “McClutch”, driving in 2 runs in the 7th to give the O’s the lead. The win gave the Orioles the series over a first-place Detroit team with arguably the best lineup in the AL and the best overall hitter on the planet in Miguel Cabrera. They did this despite trailing late in both wins, and Jason Hammel getting absolutely shelled in game 2. While the team and their fans will both certainly take series wins any way they can get them, some things may need to change in order for Baltimore to keep up their recent winning ways. First and foremost is the starting pitching. Right now, the O’s are red hot despite Chris Tillman being their most consistent starter. That’s the same Chris Tillman with a 4.26 ERA and who gave up 6 runs in 4.2 innings to the normally meek Nationals lineup in his last start. The rest of the rotation consists of Hammel (who, again, just had zero control of his pitches against Detroit and got rocked), the über-talented but inconsistent rookie Kevin Gausman, career journeyman Freddy Garcia, and the not-bad-but-not-great Miguel Gonzalez. Now, the O’s do have Wei-Yin Chen almost ready to come off the DL, and Garcia pitched a fantastic 8-inning shutout against Washington his last time on the hill, but the fact is that the rotation needs to improve by leaps and bounds for the birds to have a realistic chance of making the playoffs at the end of the year. The second underlying problem the Orioles have is, surprisingly, the bullpen. I don’t necessarily mean everyone, as Darren O’Day has been his usual dominant self all year, and Steve Johnson has provided quality innings for the club since his call-up. But the rest of the ‘pen needs to step their game up. Pedro Strop has given up 12 runs in roughly two months this season; he gave up 18 all of last year.The team hasn’t won a game he’s appeared in since May 12th against the Twins. Jim Johnson’s struggles have been well documented, and while his last few outings have been better, he needs to keep it up, or the O’s can watch their hopes go down the drain. Troy Patton has also almost matched his earned run totals from last year (12/15). The bullpen was the backbone of the team last year, and helped hide a starting rotation that was in nearly as much disarray as it is right now. If they don’t right the ship quickly, the question remains: Can the success last? It just might, thanks to the backbone of the 2013 Baltimore team: the lineup. There is something about this group of guys that brings the best out of everyone, every single time they take the field. They never panic if they get down early (or late), and they know that if one guy is having an off day that someone else will pick up the slack. As CF Adam Jones says, “It’s all about fighting and grinding. We do both everyday”. As long as they continue to “Stay Hungry” (the team’s unofficial motto) and hit a league leading 81 homers with a .275 team batting average (2nd in MLB), the team should be able to stay afloat while their pitching issues work themselves out. And once they do, there might be no one who can stop this team.
PLAYERS: Chris Davis
TEAMS: Baltimore Orioles

Royals beat A's in extras, win first playoff game since '85

Mark Davis: Raiders head coaching job will be 'enticing'

Fan on Craigslist offers Nats playoff tickets for threesome

Brady snubs rookie Garoppolo after touchdown pass

Cung Le suspended for failed HGH test

FCC Chairman: Washington nickname 'inappropriate today'


Brain study finds 76 of 79 deceased NFL players had CTE

Tony Sparano to step in as Raiders head coach

Eli on Geno Smith: If fans yell at you, you probably deserve it

49ers players come out in support of Jim Harbaugh

Raiders reportedly expected to make a run at Jon Gruden

FCC unanimously ends sports blackout rule

MLB.com posts wrong story saying A's won game

WATCH: Brett Favre in new nose hair trimmer commercial

WATCH: Michigan students protest, call for AD to be fired

Marlins president: We're not trading Giancarlo Stanton

Heckling Knicks fan suing team over ejection

This weekend in NFL stupid

Kobe: Iggy Azalea has had better career than Swaggy P

College football's post-Week 5 playoff projection

Oregon to don pink-themed unis for breast cancer awareness

Is DeMarco Murray the best RB in the NFL?

WATCH: TBS sends up 'Boom Goes the Dynamite' with promo

Ilya Bryzgalov takes photos with fans while on the bench

Orioles News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

WATCH: Brett Favre in new commercial

Brady snubs rookie after TD pass

FCC: Washington nickname 'inappropriate today'

Could Jon Gruden return to Oakland?

Marlins: We're not trading Stanton

Study: 76 of 79 deceased NFL players had CTE

Heckling fan sues Knicks over ejection

Sparano to step in as Raiders head coach

This weekend in NFL stupid

Kobe chooses Iggy over Swaggy P

Is DeMarco Murray the NFL's best RB?

Ilya Bryzgalov takes photos with fans while on the bench

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.