Here's a roundup of what other media outlets are saying about the Orioles:** Jon Paul Morosi of FoxSports.com lists Orioles outfielder Chris Davis as one of baseball’s unlikely heroes who could shine in September, especially with Nick Markakis out of the lineup:
Despite the Orioles’ resiliency this season, the injury to Markakis may be the one thing they can’t overcome. Markakis has been the team’s most consistent offensive force lately – with a .335 batting average in the second half – before a broken left thumb ended his season Saturday night.
Davis took his place in right field Sunday and went 1-for-4 in Baltimore’s loss to the Yankees. Davis is a dramatically different hitter than Markakis, but he can contribute to the cause as long as he hits a few well-timed home runs down the stretch. (Nate McLouth, who replaced Markakis in the leadoff spot Sunday, is another player to watch.)
** Joe Posananski of Sports On Earth says these Orioles are different from the Orioles teams of the past 14 years which, as bad teams do, became just another generic opponent for the teams that mattered:
This is why it’s great that the Orioles are winning. It may or may not last. Everyone knows, especially Baltimore’s biggest fans, that the Orioles are going to have to find some more stable starting pitching in order to be part of the conversation for the next few years. They’re going to have to find some top-of-the-lineup hitting, too.
But that’s long-term stuff. In the short term, Buck Showalter’s team is winning all the close ones, they’re locking down the last three innings, they’re getting hits when those hits win games. And because of this, Baltimore baseball is back, in the pennant chase. It’s been way too long.
I want all those great baseball towns of my childhood to come back again. Pittsburgh keeps trying and fading. Kansas City can’t quite get all those talented kids to peak at the same time. But Cincinnati is winning big, and Baltimore is fighting with the Yankees for the division title, just like old times. I can hear my father yelling: ‘Brooks Robinson!’ It’s like being young again.
The Baltimore Orioles will need to continue playing at a high level as they face off against the Tampa Bay Rays in another important series that could determine whether the Orioles still have a chance to make it into the playoffs this year or not. Jason hammel will take the mound (Tuesday) against Alex Cobb in what should be a great pitching matchup.
Hammel looked good in his first start off an injury against the Yankees, and will need to go deep into the game to give the bullpen some rest. Cobb only has a handful of starts left before the team will shut him down for the season, so it will be interesting to see how he pitches knowing what lies ahead. Either way, the Orioles need to get off to a strong start against a Rays team that has won six of (its) past eight games.