MLB Baltimore Orioles

Nick Markakis is Rediscovering his Power-Stroke to Help Carry Baltimore Orioles’ Offense

Nick Markakis

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

The Baltimore Orioles right fielder Nick Markakis is quietly one of baseball’s hottest hitters right now. Coming off a disappointing 2013 campaign where Markakis posted some of the worst stats of his career, he was determined to improve in 2014.

Markakis hit .271 with only 10 home runs and 59 RBIs last season, the once promising hitter was a shell of the doubles machine he once was.

However, after an offseason of working out to regain his strength, the results on the field are finally starting to show. Markakis weighs 16 pounds more than he did last year, so it’s obvious he worked hard, but now he has the results to prove it.

After Saturday afternoon’s game against the Minnesota Twins, Markakis had extended his hitting streak to 11 games and is now hitting .310 with two home runs and 10 RBIs. Most importantly though, in the last few games he’s raised his slugging percentage to a very respectable .411 mark.

The Orioles’ offense is missing arguably their best hitter in Chris Davis, so the timing of Markakis’ hot streak couldn’t be better.

This is Markakis’ final year under contract, but if he keeps hitting the baseball like he is right now, he’s bound to be back in Baltimore. Even if Markakis can finish the year with something like 20 home runs and 70 runs batted in while hitting .280, it will be tough for the Orioles not to offer him a contract extension.

Markakis is loved in the clubhouse and he’s been with the team through the ups and many downs of the last decade. If he can hit the baseball for some power on top of playing fantastic defense, it would be downright stupid for the Orioles to even consider letting him go in the offseason.

David Atlas is a Baltimore Orioles writer for Rant Sports. You can follow him on Twitter (@DavidAtlasRants) or add him to your circles on Google+.

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Baltimore Orioles’ Nick Markakis is a Professional, Will Bounce Back in 2014