Reviewing the Series: #2 Baltimore Orioles
Well that did not go as planned. Despite being no worse than coin flip favorites in each of these games the Rays came away winless with the second contest being called on account of rain. The first game was an old school beatdown with the battle of the Chris’s going to their Tillman over our Archer. In the final game of the series the Rays played with the O’s, but just couldn’t get the deciding run in. Here’s the tables:
Game five saw the Rays with a slight edge coming in, but were battered with a nearly .200 point gap between team wOBA. Game six saw the Rays cool off the Orioles bats a bit, while doing better themselves, but to no avail. That Orioles pen is truly a marvel. Let’s convert these wOBA figures into expected runs:
A more familiar context doesn’t make the beating feel all that much better. They manhandled the Rays in the first game and didn’t let off the gas in the second. Here’s the pythag win expectancies:
Playing the way they did the Rays should be happy to win one in four, but of course we only played the two and lost both. Let’s look at their hitters to find one of the key places it all went wrong:
As a team they scored around five runs more than the average in just two games. This was buoyed heavily by stud third baseman Manny Machado who was nearly four runs better than average, but it didn’t stop there as Jonathan Schoop, Mark Trumbo, Chris Davis, Hyun Soo Kim and Nolan Reimold all had well above average contributions with the sticks. A few bats were held in check, but they mashed. Here’s our pitchers to see who wore it best:
Despite the prolific offense faced the Rays were able to limit their pen to three relievers over the two games. Getting multiple innings from Enny Romero and Erasmo Ramirez went a long way. Much like the first series the pen wasn’t the issue. The Rays are going to have to get quality starts from their big guns. So far that hasn’t been the case and that only continued in this series. Chris Archer was very bad. Jake Odorizzi was less bad, but still below average and if he had been just a little better maybe the Rays draw the split. Here are our batters:
Not a whole lot of success to speak of here, but boy oh boy did Big Swingin’ Corey Dickerson have a series. He was joined on the positive side of the ledger by Logan Forsythe and Steven Souza who were both more good than great. While the team results haven’t been quite to liking yet it has been highly encouraging to see very real bats like Dickerson and Souza get off to nice starts. This team absolutely needs them.
We see, again, that Logan Morrison was the weak link for the second consecutive series. While the lack of production hurts, it becomes doubly painful when he’s doing so little with what should be the most important spot in the lineup. We give Kevin Kiermaier a ton of praise here, but we should also mention that he didn’t do a whole lot with several pivotal at bats this series. Without the star power of our opponents it is critical that every part of the lineup contribute. When that happens this is going to be a very fun team to watch, but we aren’t there yet. Lastly, here’s their pitchers:
McFarland gave them three huge innings in the first game stinkfest. That was huge in letting Buck get his big guns some rest. They were all needed in the second game where they mostly did not disappoint. Darren O’Day walked a couple of guys and almost let the Rays back in it, but to no avail. This is a very good team. One that the Rays are going to have to hit better against if they want to take this division.