At 19-49, the Orioles were hoping this past Sunday to reach the 20 win mark before 50 losses. Not only did the loss make them the first team in the majors to hit 50 in the loss column, but they are still the only team in baseball without 25 wins, let alone 20. Just a short mention: The 1962 Mets started their season off with a 19-50 record. They ended the season at 40-120. There is nothing stopping this Orioles team from finding the record books with a continuing losing trend, but I think that this home stand could be a could time to release some frustration and gather a few wins here and there.
They play 3 series here at Camden Yards, including 2 interleague play matchups and one stint against the A’s. Starting tonight, the Birds are hosting the Florida Marlins and rookie Mike Stanton for the next few days. The Marlins are in a difficult NL East this year, and depite being at 33-36, chasing .500, that leaves them in the dust for the playoffs. With a young pitching staff and a core of bright talents around the diamond, they are a team looking to get back in contention within the next year or two.
The biggest news in their organization this season was the promotion of hitting phenom Mike Stanton. Not to mention the whole Hanley Ramirez ordeal when he jogged out to get a ball he had previously kicked to the outfield. Mixed with some rumors of a managerial change, the Marlins season has been one of confusion. Manager Freddi Sanchez has raised quite a solid group of guys, and would love the chance to continue on with them past this year.
The Orioles are coming in this week quite unfocused. News that Showalter is being interviewed this week, along with Wedge getting a 2nd look, rumors of a Wieters demotion to AAA, and just watching some bats trick the organization with quick bits of goodness but absolutely no consistency have really switched focus over from baseball onto random bitsd pieces of drama going on. People continue focusing on the lack of improvement by Nolan Reimold, along with wailing over the extended missed time by 2B Brian Roberts. The situation within the club is more than unfocused; it is purely chaotic.
For two clubs with more than interesting seasons so far, this series will be important for both to establish themselves. Guthrie, Matusz, and Millwood, the most under-supported trio of starting pitchers in all of baseball will be taking the mound for the O’s. It will be interesting to see how they can deal with the likes of up and coming star Hanley Ramirez, future guy Mike Stanton, and another average lineup with mostly mid .200 hitters. We face big name Ricky Nolasco on the mound for the Marlins, and Anibal Sanchez, who, in NL parks, is hitting .238 (better than Wieters, Izturis, Lugo, Atkins, and more). The matchups should be interesting as the series moves along.
Can Adam Jones keep up his bit of hitting? Can Markakis, Wigginton, and Tejada keep up with getting on base to create scoring opportunities? Will Alfredo Simon fit right back into that close role now that he has been set there? We will have to see.