Baltimore Orioles: Runs Scored, Runs Allowed Problems


Aug 31, 2015; Baltimore, MD, USA; Tampa Bay Rays second baseman Logan Forsythe (11) scores before Baltimore Orioles catcher Caleb Joseph (36) can apply the tag during the second inning at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

The inability of the Baltimore Orioles to score runs reminds me of a wisecrack my high school golf coach would make when I left a putt too short of the hole. He would say, “Don’t you realize it is true that 95% of all putts short of the hole don’t go in?”  Of course it is 100%, just as 100% of baseball games are losses when no runs are scored.

But the problem is also that a startling number of baseball games are losses when few runs are tallied. Repeatedly over recent years it has been noted that when the Baltimore Orioles score four or more runs in a game, they win a high percentage of those contests. The trouble with the O’s has been scoring those runs this year.

For reference, let’s take the numbers over the past two years, looking at the records and winning percentages relative to runs scored (remembering that the 2014 numbers represent 162 games, whereas the 2015 stats are only through the current number of 131 games) …

Runs scored20142014%20152015%
1 or less2-22.0831-22.043
2 or less10-40.2004-38.095
3 or less21-51.2969-52.143
4 or more75-15.83354-14.794

Looking at these numbers, it may be concluded (with a lot of truth) that the pitching has actually been worse in 2015. Hey, there is plenty of blame to go around!  But consider the next chart that shows what percentage of games played have had the number of runs scored in each category, and this demonstrates how much more poorly the Orioles are in terms of putting runs across the plate …

Runs scored% in ‘14% in ‘15
1 or less14.8%17.6%
2 or less30.9%32.1%
3 or less43.8%46.6%
4 or more55.6%51.9%

Though the Orioles have shown an ability to get runners on base in the ninth inning and even score some runs (rather than just rolling over dead), they have rather terrible numbers when coming from behind. When trailing as they begin the eighth inning this year, the Orioles are only 1-58 in such scenarios; and they are a perfect 0-60 when going into the ninth inning behind.

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Last year they were 5-52 and 3-54 in those situations respectively. The 2012 team won nine games in which they trailed when entering the eighth inning, and even four when behind as the ninth inning began.

One of this blog’s readers pondered if this year’s current meltdown was on track to set any sort of record, year to year. I don’t know what the worst turnaround is for MLB, but looking back at Orioles history (not counting years that were strike-shortened), the worst was from the 1966 World Series Championship team to 1967 — a 22-game difference.

The O’s are now 63-68, and if they go 11-20 or worse over the final 31 games, that would set a new meltdown record.

Isn’t this a cheerful post?

Next: O's Need to win at least 75% of remaining games