When last we met over our morning coffee to gander at the latest O’s links, back on Friday, the Birds were winless down in Sarasota. Well, here we are on Monday and nothing has changed in that particular department. While it’s always good to have a reason to remind ourselves that the spring games don’t count, it sure is more fun tempering our enthusiasm when the squad is tearing up the Grapefruit League than it is trying to stay positive as they do their best doormat impression. Hopefully they can turn things around and we’ll be doing more of the former and less of the latter here shortly. Anywho, links!
In his first piece for Camden Depot, Mike Bonsiero looks at projections for the most likely Orioles lineup, and compares them (using wRC+) to the rest of the league. His conclusion is that the O’s will have a very good – if not elite – lineup, the strength of which will likely unfortunately not be good enough to raise them from last year’s 81 wins to the level of true contender. A fun little exercise for those who don’t reflexively click the “X” on a tab as soon as the word “projection” shows up.
In case your hunger for fancy stats this morning wasn’t satiated by our first link, we’ll crank it up a bit here in number two. Over at The Hardball Times, Eli Ben-Porat tries to come up with a new measure for trying to see which batters might benefit from shortening their swings to sacrifice a bit of power for a bit more contact. The piece includes a table of all players’ “True Contact,” on which Chris Davis scores quite low – but ahead of Giancarlo Stanton, so, yay? Also ahead of Khris Davis.
Rob Shields of Baltimore Sports and Life gives us some reassurances about the Orioles’ starting rotation. No, not that they’re particularly any good, or that underlying metrics point to potential breakouts/rebounds…just that they’re usually not hurt. So, that’s something.
ESPN’s Eddie Matz sat down with Dylan Bundy to ask him some non-pitching questions, such as who his favorite musician is, what he does in the offseason, and what his hidden talent is. Let’s just hope none of his favorite songs make it into his warm-up music at the Yard.
Steve Melewski of MASN asks Orioles fans to make some predictions for the 2016 season. A scroll through the comments shows that Birds fans are all over the spectrum regarding the team’s prospects for this year, which seems about right. The team certainly has a lot of talent, but also a lot of question marks. It’s only a week into Spring Training, but I think we’re all just about ready for the games to start counting.