With so many unsung heroes contributing to the Orioles' improbable run, it almost gets lost how well Chris Davis has swung the bat this season.
Everyone knew he had power from his early days with the Rangers, but in 199 at-bats as a part-time player with Texas and the O's last year, he had just 5 homers. That's one every 39.8 at-bats.
After crushing two last night, Davis has 28 home runs this season in 494 at-bats -- or one ever 17.6 ABs.
It lends credence to the theory that all he needed was regular playing time, but even that pulls you away from the fact that he's improved quite a bit as a hitter.
Consider this nugget from ESPN Stats and Information: "The Blue Jays threw Davis nine sliders [Wednesday night], which seemed like a smart strategy going into the game, as he was hitting just .176 in at-bats ending in sliders this year. That includes a 1-for-17 stretch in his previous 45 games.
Davis clubbed two sliders over the fence Wednesday, a career first for him against that pitch."
Davis is one of those country strong guys who can turn batting practice into an event and distribute souvenirs onto Eutaw Street like no other Oriole. But he actually seems to be at his best when he takes what the pitcher is giving him and uses the whole field.
He's certainly done that this September, batting .317 (his best average of any month this season) with 5 homers.
Davis' pitching victory against the Red Sox will always remain one of the great highlights of the season. Heck, if they make the playoffs by a single game, who won't point back to that one?
But let's not overlook his entire body of work (.267, 28 homers, 77 RBIs) and what it's meant for the Orioles.