On a day when Brandon Hyde dropped Chris Davis from the starting lineup, the Orioles manager ended his pregame news conference — in which he spent over 14 minutes talking about everything but his beleaguered first baseman — by praising the way the light crowd at Camden Yards supported Davis on Monday night.
Davis, who is sitting against Oakland Athletics left-hander Brett Anderson, set an undesirable major league record dating to September with 49 consecutive at-bats without a hit with an 0-for-5 performance Monday night.
But unlike the boos and jeers that marked the weekend series with the New York Yankees at Camden Yards, the record-low announced crowd of 6,585 on Monday cheered Davis warmly and throughout his at-bats, even after the three line-drive outs that clinched the record for him.
“I’m going to end it with this right here — I just thought the fan reaction to Chris last night was phenomenal,” Hyde said. “Phenomenal. Obviously, he’s going through a really tough time, and i just thought it was so cool and shows a lot about our fanbase, how they were really cheering him on.
“There was disappointment when he didn’t get those hits, but I just thought their reaction to the tough times he’s had, and how they cheered him last night, was fantastic.”
Davis was left out of the lineup Tuesday against a left-hander for the third time this season, having not played in the second game of the season against James Paxton and coming off the bench Saturday against J.A. Happ, both of the New York Yankees.
One more hitless plate appearance would tie the major league record of 57, set by Tony Bernazard of the Cleveland Indians in 1984.