Subscribe to our newsletter
Close this search box.

It’s Early, but O’s Again Look to be Class of American League

Westburg Henderson low five
photo: Baltimore Orioles (
Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Reading Time: 3 minutes

The calendar has turned to May and the Orioles, coming off taking three of four from the Yankees, are in first place. It was a series that was largely dominated by pitching.

As an O’s fan, I came away from this series believing that the Orioles are the clear best team in the AL East.

Don’t get me wrong: the division is, again, very good, and I think the Yankees will very possibly (maybe even likely) be in the postseason. However, that isn’t a team I’m overly worried about.

Juan Soto is perhaps the best hitter in baseball and you would think Aaron Judge will get it going here soon (although the toe injury could be a problem). But looking at the rest of the offense, there isn’t much there that scares you. Defensively, they aren’t that strong in the outfield. The infield defense is good but not great, and as we saw this week, is prone to crucial lapses.

Yes, D.J. Lamahieu will be back, but how good will he be? New York may be able to get a big infusion of young talent from Jaason Dominguez and perhaps Spencer Jones but really, the offense is lacking.

Importantly, their bullpen is fantastic. In a short series, they could be tough to beat for no other reason. On the other hand, the starting pitching has to get them to that bullpen and unless Gerrit Cole comes back and looks like his old self and Carlos Rodon starts looking like the Rodon of a few years ago (two huge “ifs”), I am just not seeing it with that rotation.

Overall, the Yankees just don’t really worry me. Sure, if all of those things happen and all the pieces fall into place, they could be very dangerous. That just seems like a lot of hope without much reality attached to it.

On the other side, the Orioles are just rolling along. They got Kyle Bradish back and assuming Grayson Rodriguez‘s shoulder flare-up is minor, the rotation could become a big strength, assuming Bradish can make it through the season. We don’t know what we’ll get from John Means yet, but I’d be remiss to not mention his return.

They also will just get more talented as the year goes on. Coby Mayo is destroying AAA pitching and should be up. Jackson Holliday will be back up soon enough and be fine. They will improve the bullpen and perhaps rotation (if the need arises due to health) via trades because they have the ability to go get anyone they want.

At this point, barring a rash of injuries, anything less than a division title and fighting for the top seed would be a disappointing regular season. I’m not trying to overlook the Yankees, surprising Red Sox, talented Blue Jays or thus-far-underperforming Rays. It’s just that Baltimore’s talent is that high, the team chemistry is that good and what the O’s have coming is just better than anything else anyone has coming.

Obviously, winning in the playoffs is a different story. The Orioles need to prove they can do that, and they need to build this roster up to be the best it can be in October. I just think there’s a good chance they enter the postseason as the best team in the AL once again.

For the moment, they are the kings of the division and there is no reason to think that will change. The Yankees got punched in the mouth this week, as Gleybar Tores said, and didn’t respond at all.

The O’s have both the psychological edge and better talent right now. That will be tough for NY to overcome.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Join our newsletter and get 20% discount
Promotion nulla vitae elit libero a pharetra augue