Well would you look at that, Chris Davis, who was last season having the worst offensive season of anyone who has ever qualified in MLB history seemed to resemble an actual baseball player and decided to drop DICK on this ball earlier this week. Davis' first hit of the spring came after strikeouts in his first three at-bats this spring, so it's nice to see him actually make contact, and for that ball to land on the grass outside of the fence. We all said the same thing when Davis struck out twice in his first game, and then once in the second game. Same shit, just a different day for Davis. In all seriousness, I want Chris Davis to do well, I want him to shut me up, I don't want to keep posting the gif of his face over Kevin Malone's while he drops the chili, I really don't.
I also know that Spring Training stats don't count for shit, I don't care if he hits 50 home runs this Spring, as long as he has good swings, finds the confidence, and feels comfortable. That is what I want. The more he strikes out and takes that long, slow, lonely walk back to the dugout, the more it's going to screw with his head and the mental part of the game. The more he Ks it's just going to dig that hole deeper and deeper. He's making by far the most money on the team, so he's going to play. This is going to be a thing with him all season long too, every K, everyone on twitter, myself included, is going to chirp him. That's what happens when you sign the largest contract in team history. So far he's 1/5 with a homer and three Ks. From what I hear his stance hasn't changed, something he said he would work on in the offseason, so we'll see if any change comes. I hope he gets as many ABs as he can and rides a confidence wave into the regular season. This homer was a dead center bomb though, a nice looking swing too. Wasn't trying to swing out of his shoes, just put a nice swing on it.
I'm not here to count wins and losses, because that isn't what ST is about. It's about players getting healthy, staying healthy, getting their reps, and getting comfortable. If that happens than its a win in my book. Here are some other Spring Training observations so far…
- I love Yusniel Diaz. He was the main piece in the Machado deal and in his limited at-bats has looked really good. A .400 average to go along with the longgggggg bomb above. I expect to see him up in Baltimore sometime around July, so this is a little preview of him, and I have really liked what I've seen so far. Really hope he keeps up this start.
- Rio Ruiz has made his name known a little around Sarasota, he himself had a 3-run homer and has three hits in five at-bats. He's an interesting guy who will for sure be in the mix for the third base position with Renato Nunez.
- Chance Sisco REALLY wants to be the starter. He's hit three bombs this Spring including two yesterday. The knock on him last year was his offense and ability to stay healthy. He's obviously got the talent, just stay on the field, kid!
-It's hard to take anything away from any of the pitchers because they are only going for an inning or two and most of the guys they are facing will be working at Geico in a month. Again, it's not about numbers, it's about going out, getting reps, not getting hurt, and working on some pitches.
Two guys I've been keeping an eye on are Josh Rogers and Jimmy Yacabonis, both have looked good in their limited innings nd have made quick work. I think Yacabonis had a 5-pitch inning in his outing. Hard to work on stuff when you're in and out of the dugout in a blink.
Luis Ortiz was one of the prospects that came over from the Brewers in the Schoop trade, he's lost over 20 pounds and looks like a new person. I saw someone say Mass=Gas, not in his case, he's throwing harder than he did last season. According to Brandon Hyde, Ortiz was throwing high 90s, that is what I like to see. Again, I don't care about the two runs he gave up, the increased velocity is doing it for me.
Hunter Harvey has battled injuries at every level he's reached and looks to bounce back this year. He gave up a handful of runs over the weekend, but what caught everyones attention was his speed. He was hitting 97 and 98 on his pitches, something we didn't see when he was healthy. Mix that in with his splitter that apparently is falling off of the plate, and this could be the year we see him in Baltimore. Apparently he said the old management wouldn't let him throw that splitter, so that is great. Now that he's feeling comfortable and confident, he can make some noise. This is how I want my pitchers to look.
-The Orioles swung a trade for a reliever named David Lebron. No real analysis on this one other than Davis and Lebron FINALLY get to play together.
- We're still waiting to see Mark Trumbo make his Sarasota debut this season, apparently that will wait a few more weeks as he rehabs back from his knee surgery. No rush at all for Trunbo. I want him to be 125% when the season starts so he can be flipped to a contender. Dean Kremer is still a few weeks away from making his first appearance too, he suffered an oblique injury a few days before camp started and it sounds like the team is inching him along, again, no reason to rush him.
That is pretty much it for me in regards to Orioles Spring Training, again you just want to see everyone stay healthy, get their reps, secure some spots, and get back up north.