No matter how many times some people are reminded about the dangers of getting caught up in results produced in a small sample, they still do. I get it. Its human nature to want to lean on the known and we know at this very moment is that the Orioles have not played very well in the first six games of the season. Someone shouting “SMALL SAMPLE SIZE!” in your ear 24/7 is not going to help that for a lot of people.
So to help everyone’s collective sanity (mine included), here is a list of Orioles-related events that haven’t occurred but will occur or have occurred but will not continue, all of which will be positive for the team going forward this season. I am not 100% all of this will or won't happen, but I am pretty close. Hopefully this provides some perspective to just how little (the O’s still have 86.3% of their games left to play) into the regular season we really are.
1. Chris Davis will hit a home run.
2. Chris Davis will hit many home runs.
3. Miguel Gonzalez and Wei-Yin Chen will make a substantial number of quality starters (59% combined quality start rate from 2012 – 2013).
4. Darren O’Day – who has pitched two, one-inning stints in which the O’s were down by four and six runs, respectively – will pitch in high-pressure relief situations and as his track record indicates, will likely often pitch well in those situations.
5. Adam Jones and J.J. Hardy will end the season with closer to 50 combined home runs rather than the combined zero home runs they currently have.
6. Manny Machado will play third base for the Orioles and add significant value.
7. Kevin Gausman – who looked very sharp in his AAA debut on Friday night – will make starts for the big league club.
8. The offense – which averaged 4.60 runs per game in 2013 and is currently averaging 3.34 runs per game in 2014 – will finish the season with a runs scored per game average that MUCH more resembles the 2013 year-end total than the 2014 season-to-date total.
9. The team will NOT play 158 additional games versus the two 2013 American League Championship Series participants. The team WILL play a substantial number of games versus the Astros, Twins, White Sox, Angels, Cubs, Brewers, and whichever teams happen to struggle during the 2013 season.
10. More than two games with 7:00 PM local time starts will be played. The club will NOT play more than two day games in a row this season after Tuesday.
11. Oriole starters will NOT continue to have a 4.7% homerun rate (all Orioles pitchers combined for a 3.3% rate in 2013 with a Major League average of 2.5%).
12. Matt Wieters will draw a walk. He’ll probably draw 40+ walks.
13. The offense will hit at least 10X as many homeruns as they do triples. Currently, the Birds have hit four triples to three homeruns.
14. The staff will NOT have a combined .349 bABIP against (and if they do, they will have had an unlucky season for the ages).
15. The Orioles will make a change (many changes) to their 25-man roster and will not play the entire season with these same 25 guys. Machado will return from the DL at some point. Other players will go on the DL. Players we expect to help the team will be called up and players we didn’t expect to be called up will be called up. The tone of the season and the team will feel much different on May 1st then it does now and even more different on June 1st (and July 1st, August 1st, ect.). It always does.