From the outside looking in over the past few days, the general perception is the Baltimore Orioles are going through some issues in starting pitching and the team will get their act together shortly. Well, it looks like the team has more to work on after a terrible pitching performance.
Starting pitcher Jason Hammel had another unproductive outing on Friday night when the Orioles lost to the Tampa Bay Rays 12-10 after erasing a 12-4 deficit earlier in the game. Hammel produced 4.2 innings pitched, with 10 hits allowed and seven earned runs. His overall ERA for the season is 5.72, but in May he has done his worst work with an ERA of 10.43.
I still think the Orioles will make the playoffs. Every team goes through slumps during the season. But there is little to no room for error, considering the Orioles are in third place in the AL East. While the Orioles are on a three game losing streak, I’m sure the team will say there’s no time to panic. But the reality is Hammel has to get his act together. Whether the team wants to admit it or not, they need him to perform as soon as possible.
Hammel is a player that was considered one of the best stories in baseball in 2012 and was the main starter for the Orioles on their way to their first playoff run since 1997. Now, his season last year with an ERA of 3.43 is looked upon as a fluke with a good amount of doubt among Oriole fans.
But even though the Orioles are in a tough stretch right now, it’s a good opportunity for the team to look at the mental state of some of the players in the locker room. The franchise is looking further than two seasons. They want consistency and they will find out in the coming weeks who has the ability to shine under the circumstances and who will fail under it.