Baltimore Orioles lack consistent offense, fail against unproven pitchers

SEATTLE, WA - AUGUST 15: Manny Machado
SEATTLE, WA - AUGUST 15: Manny Machado /

The lone West Coast trip of the season on the Baltimore Orioles schedule wraps up as they continue to produce mediocre results.

If I had told you before the West Coast road trip that the Baltimore Orioles would face the following pitchers, what would you guess their record would be?

You probably would guess something with more wins than losses, right? In fact, for most casual fans, they probably only knew four names on that list. Bridwell and Gallardo from their times in Baltimore, and Graveman and Manaea.

None of the rest is exactly household names.

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Here we sit with the Baltimore Orioles 4-5 on the road trip and needing to beat Gonzales to split the trip.

Not good when two of these teams, the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and the Seattle Mariners, are teams you are battling for the wild card.

Albers was the latest no-name pitcher to get the best of the Orioles, getting his first win in four years in a 3-1 win over the O’s on Tuesday night.

It is simply maddening. The Orioles have made a habit over the last few years of, well, having several bad habits.

In one game, the offense will be patient, score 10+ runs and look like a well-oiled machine. The next, they will go several innings in a row without even putting a runner on base (six innings last night if you are keeping track at home).

This point was well-touched on by Dan Connolly of early Wednesday.

You can’t blame the hitting coach, as it has been a problem before him. It just doesn’t make sense.

In this trip, the Baltimore Orioles have lost to Bridwell, Scribner, Santiago Casilla, Graveman, and Albers. Those guys are a combined 15-9 on the year, and 72-60 for their career. In fact, only Graveman has a losing record, and he is probably the best pitcher of the five.

The pitching has been pretty good for Oriole standards on the road trip. But the offense has been maddening.

It seems like in the low-scoring games, the Orioles get their runs via the home run. That was the case on Tuesday, with a Jonathan Schoop solo home run in the first accounting for all the damage the Orioles would do to the scoreboard.

In the game before, the Orioles put up 11 runs on Gallardo and the Mariners. That came on the backs of four home runs.

On Saturday, the Orioles put up 12 runs, none of them on home runs. So, the team does know how to score without using the long ball.

Unfortunately, that has not happened enough in 2017, or for much of the Buck Showalter tenure.

That isn’t to say it is all doom and gloom today. The Orioles remain only two games out of the second wild card, but there are now eight teams within four games for the last wild card spot.

That includes three teams from the AL East (Orioles, Tampa Bay Rays and Toronto Blue Jays) and three out the west (Seattle Mariners, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and Texas Rangers). Yes, Texas and Toronto have been returned from ‘the dead.’

More good news comes in who the Orioles play when they return home to Baltimore, where they are an above .600 team. That would be the Angels and Oakland again. The Angels pitching staff won’t be any different, although they may have Andrew Heaney back, who has worked his way back from Tommy John surgery.

The Orioles will need to make the most of that series against the Athletics, as that is the last team they play that is currently out of contention.

After Oakland, the Orioles travel to Boston, then host the Mariners. The Mariners likely will still be without Felix Hernandez and James Paxton, good news for the Orioles.

After the Mariners series wraps up, the Orioles then face primarily the AL East, with seven games against Toronto, New York and Tampa Bay. Also thrown in is a three-game series against Cleveland and a brief, two-game set against Pittsburgh in the next-to-last series.

The Baltimore Orioles’ pitching has answered the bell recently. The offense remains one of the best since the All-Star break. However, those numbers are misleading. One game will feature many runs, and the next will highlight just a couple.

Next: What you need to know about Orioles upcoming roster moves

Can the Baltimore Orioles get more consistency from their offense?

Their playoff lives may depend on it.