Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Baltimore Orioles: The Success of the Number 4- the Offense or Pitching?


The Baltimore Orioles are no different from any other MLB team when it comes to winning games when scoring at least four runs.

I have been digging into the Orioles’ seasons since 2011 to understand this stat when it comes to Baltimore.

Through the first month and a half, the Orioles are playing very similar to their 2012 season, also known as the playoff season.

Underneath all of the numbers, the Orioles season come down to the same things, and the small differences show the results of each season.

In regards to scoring four runs, the Orioles were 58-39 for a .597 winning percentage in 2011. When removing failed comebacks which resulted in the Orioles scoring four runs, their record was 58-24 with a .707 winning percentage.

Within the 58 wins, 35 wins came when the opponents scored less than four times. The other 23 wins came when the opponents scored four or more times.

A key factor in that season was a 23-39 record when the Orioles scored four or more runs and allowed four or more runs. Even when removing failed comebacks, the Orioles still had a losing record.

In 2012, the Orioles won 93 games and 72 of those games the offense scored four or more runs. Their overall record when scoring at least four runs was 72-17 for a .809 winning percentage.

Analyzing each loss, eight of those games the Orioles scored four runs in a failed comeback. A 72-9 record is left with a .889 winning percentage.

The Orioles scored four or more runs 46 times, while the pitching held the opponents to less than four runs. 26 times the opposing team scored four or more runs.

The Orioles were 26-9 (excluding failed comebacks) in 2012 when both teams scored four or more runs.

In contrast to the 2011 season, the Orioles pitching complemented the offense. The pitching was better compared to previous years giving the Orioles 21 wins when the offense scored less than four runs.

A similar trend could be seen in the 2013 season, but with some differences.

The Orioles, again like all MLB teams do, won 69 of 85 games when scoring four or more runs. However, that season the pitching was not as good as in 2012, so the Orioles lost 31 times when scoring four or more times.

The Orioles won 24 times when they scored four or more, giving them a .436 winning percentage in that scenario. When accounting for failed comebacks, which often distort this stat, the winning percentage raises only to .558%.

The overall record dropped from 2012 to .690 winning percentage when scoring four or more runs, or .784% when removing the distortion from the stats.

The pitching’s poor performance showed when both teams scored less than four runs, which stood at 16-14 for a .533 winning percentage.

With all those stats of the recent seasons, the only stats that matter are the ones for this 2014 season.

Through the first month and a half of the season, the Orioles are on the same track record of the last two seasons.

The offense has currently scored four or more runs in 21 games, winning 15. Four of the six losses only come into this stat because of failed comebacks.

The Orioles have lost two times when the offense has kept the game in reach. The pitching was just bad enough for good offense to be unable to overcome.

In my analysis of the past three seasons and this current season, I put the blame on the offense, and not as much on the pitching.

Before a revolt breaks out at this blasphemy, there is reasoning behind this madness. The Orioles offense has been good with the massive onslaught of home runs last season, and a powerhouse of a lineup.

I take this from the record the Orioles have when both teams score four or more runs. The pitching keeps the Orioles in the games, but the offense leaves them hanging, which leads to a loss.

The pitching is to blame for some games, such as Wednesday’s 9-8 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates.

However, this season, the offense has not been consistent to provide a complementary aspect to the pitching.

When offense scores the magic number of four, the pitching complements it with a good outing, or keeps the Orioles in the game, most of the time. This has been true for the most part over the past two winning seasons.

The Orioles have never been a great pitching team, and now that there has been an improvement, it is time for the offense to step up.

If the offense can be a bit more consistent, the Orioles are going to start push away from the .500 mark, and become a better team.

The lineup has the players to do it, but the consistency has not shown up yet this season. I am still waiting for the Orioles to take advantage of their magic number of four.

Tags: Baltimore Orioles