We are one month into Major League Baseball’s regular season.
Here’s a look at how our four area teams are faring two and a half months deep into the marathon season:
BALTIMORE ORIOLES (19-48, last place in AL East)
Baltimore has not found a way to improve over a lowly April.
Injuries have decimated the team, and an under-performing offense haven’t helped a less than stellar pitching staff.
The Orioles are on their way to being the worst team in the league.
SS Manny Machado – Machado is hitting .311 with 18 HR’s and 50 RBI’s as one of the lone bright spots on the team. He has cooled off a bit from a torrid April, but is still a candidate for AL MVP. Of course, Machado is also in a contract year, and expected to garner a record-breaking deal in free agency, so he may not be in Baltimore too much longer.
SP Dylan Bundy – Bundy may finally be putting it together at the Major League level. He is currently tied for the league lead in starts with 14, and sports a 3.66 ERA along with four wins for the lowly team.
He is one of the lone bright spots for a pitching staff that has dealt with a number of injuries and poor performances so far.
PITTSBURGH PIRATES (33-35, 4th place in NL Central)
The Pirates have come back to Earth after a hot start.
Pittsburgh is in a deep division headed by the St. Louis Cardinals, Chicago Cubs and Milwaukee Brewers, so it may take a superhuman effort to stay in contention all season.
OF Starling Marte – After a suspension-shortened 2017, Marte is showing that he’s still a quality player in 2018. Hitting at the top of the Pirates’ lineup, Marte is showing he can do it all, hitting .286 with 8 HR’s and 30 RBI’s while adding 18 stolen bases. He is one of the lone bright spots in an order that doesn’t feature much firepower.
SP Jameson Taillon – After giving the crown to P Trevor Williams last month, Taillon has gone on to establish himself with a few strong starts. He is 3-5 over 13 starts spanning over 70 innings. Taillon carries a 4.08 ERA, but is tied for the league lead with its only complete game shutout of the season. Pittsburgh hopes that Taillon’s development keeps up over the rest of the season, giving them a possible top of the rotation option.
PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES (34-31, 3rd place in NL East)
The Phillies have began to struggle as their schedule has gotten stronger.
The team is 3-7 over its last 10 games, and a number of hitters have fallen into slumps recently.
However, the Phillies’ pitching staff has remained strong through the midway part of June.
1B Carlos Santana– After OF Odubel Herrera got off to a ridiculous hot streak to begin the season, he has fallen into a three-week long slump. However, that’s right around the time that Santana began to heat up.
While Santana is only batting .219, he has one of the top on-base percentages in baseball (.344) along with 10 HR’s and 37 RBI’s. He has been the Phillies’ most potent offensive player so far this season.
SP Aaron Nola – Nola has grabbed the reins of the Phillies’ rotation, and has been one of the best starters in baseball so far.
He is 8-2 over 14 starts and 91 innings pitched.
Possibly even more impressive, Nola has a 2.27 ERA and 90 strikeouts.
He looks as if he is one of the best pitchers in baseball.
WASHINGTON NATIONALS (37-28, 2nd place in NL East)
The Nationals have been able to withstand a litany of injuries, and have begun to surge now that many of their players have returned.
After a slow start, Washington finds themselves near the top of the NL East.
OF Bryce Harper- After a slow start, Harper was able to turn it on over the past month and a half.
He leads the league with 19 HR’s and 50 walks to go along with his 43 RBI’s.
Harper’s hitting a low .228 at this point in the season, but his other statistics lead you to believe that his average will climb.
SP Max Scherzer – It’s no surprise here, as the Nationals’ pitching staff has held up their end of the bargain.
Scherzer is leading the way once again, jumping out to a 10-1 record, and leading the league in wins. Over 94.2 innings, Scherzer has a 2.00 ERA and 142 strikeouts, an average of 13.5 per nine innings. He’s the early favorite for the NL Cy Young Award.
You can check back next month with FOX43 Sports to see how our four area Major League teams fared over the month of June and beginning of July.