Baltimore Orioles

Orioles concede night without home run is 'unusual,' but result remains the same

If their win four weeks ago in Texas -- when the Orioles went from looking like they were about to be shut down to hitting four home runs in an inning in the blink of an eye -- was peak Orioles, consider Thursday's win against the Detroit Tigers the base-camp midway up the mountain.

They came to life after showing no signs that such a revival was possible in Thursday's 7-5 win over the Detroit Tigers, but did it without the benefit of much power.


Trailing 5-0, the Orioles had just three singles through five innings, then had three hits in the sixth inning and six in the seventh. What makes the outburst, which produced seven runs, noteworthy was that the American League home run leaders with 49 didn't hit a single one, and 10 of their 12 hits were singles.

"It was very unusual for us, but I'm proud of the way we've been going about our at-bats and not just giving in or going up there and hacking when we get down," said first baseman Chris Davis, who had one of the seventh-inning singles. "We're actually working the count trying to see some pitches and take advantage of it."


These words are similar to those they preach after they do hit home runs, like the six on Sunday against the Oakland Athletics, the pair of long balls Tuesday in Minnesota or the four that followed there Wednesday.

Davis said the reputation of the Orioles being exclusively sluggers is unfair, even after center fielder Adam Jones said before the game that they've led the majors in home runs for years and don't really think much of it anymore.

"It's been such our forte the last few years that it's kind of hard to get away from," Davis said. "But we put emphasis on it in spring training, going into this season that we wanted to have quality at-bats. That's something that [hitting coach Scott Coolbaugh] really preaches. You're not just going up there and swinging. You're looking for a certain pitch and you make the guy come to you. We've done a good job of that, and it's definitely paid off."

The seventh-inning sequence of singles helped the Orioles to their fifth win in 11 games without a home run. Manager Buck Showalter had no interest in the homer-heavy narrative after the game.

"It's not like they go in the cage or go out and take batting practice working on hitting home runs," Showalter said. "It's the byproduct of good approaches. ... We had some productive outs. The guys kid about POFOs – productive outs for Orioles – and you've got to always try to keep some pressure on them. At least take a run at them and see if you can get the tying run up there and see what happens."