Okay, O's have a 4 game lead and will have the biggest road trip of the year playing on the west coast. Oakland and Anaheim have the best records in baseball and Seattle is no slouch either at 7 games above .500. All three teams have a combined run differential of an astounding +291!
So, what are your predictions for this 10 game trip? And what would you be happy with?
I think the rested bullpen will be a big plus for the O's and they will go 6-4. But I'd be happy with 5-5 or even 4-6. Just hope they don't lay a goose egg.
This will be the O's biggest test ever. A's and Angels are clearly the top two teams in all of baseball right now. They are red-hot. O's will have to bring their A+ game just to break even. If they end up winning this roadtrip, they will gain a ton of respect going forward as legitimate contenders. I would be happy if we came home from this trip still in first place.
The Mariners are not slouches either. All three teams we face have more than 50 wins. If the O's manage to at least win 5 games (maybe even 4), I consider that a moderate success. Sounds bad but it's true....going out west and basically splitting the 10 game series is not a bad thing. I'd definitely prefer that they win more than 5 games (obviously) but I'm not going to be unrealistic about the situation.
I think a realistic swing is going to be 4-6 or 3-7. The O's typically don't play well on the west coast and they are facing three tough teams. I will be ecstatic if we go 5-5. And then 3-3 at home. Any kind of split to go 8-8 the next couple of weeks will be a good thing and if we can find a way to go 9-7 that would be huge.
4-6 on the road, 4-2 at home...that's 8-8 and I'd take that all day. We'd then be 60-50 entering August 4th (the day we have the make-up game with the Nats).
On another note, just looking at the schedule, barring a rain-out at some point, the O's have games on 16-straight days (July 29 through August 13) and play on 28 out of 29 days (July 18 though August 14, day off on July 28).
The next month will truly test the Orioles' mettle. If they can get through this insane stretch of games with a 14-14 mark, I consider that a rousing success. Anything better and I'll be ecstatic. If they go 14-14 over the next month, they'll be 66-56 with 42 games remaining. It's conceivable, then, that they play .600 ball from there out and finish with roughly a 92-70 record, likely good enough to win the East.
And right now they are blowing away the competition....their lineup is every bit as explosive as ours. Wouldn't be surprised to see at least one 11-10 game on this trip. and yes....you slaughter the teams you should beat so you can basically break even with the others.
This is difficult to predict. The Angels seem to have our number, at least it feels that way, on west coast swings. I think we might have been better, overall, last year than in the past, so it makes me hopeful for this year. We split with Oakland at home earlier this year, right? If we are .500, we should be ok. Anything better than that is a bonus. We've been playing well. Hopefully the AS break didn't kill that momentum. I'll be optimistic and say 7/10. The A's series should be interesting after the whole Manny debacle earlier.