No one expected the Baltimore Orioles to have good pitching this year, but they’re on pace to easily set a dubious record.
Contention is a long way away for the Baltimore Orioles, and they’re already 15.5 games back in the AL East entering Wednesday. During Tuesday night’s 11-4 loss to the New York Yankees, their 48th game, they allowed their 100th home run of the season.
Upon reaching the century mark in home runs allowed in that few games, the Orioles became the fastest team to allow 100 home runs in a season. According to ESPN Stats and Info the previous record was 57 games to allow 100 home runs, by the 2000 Kansas City Royals.
The record for home runs allowed in a single season is 258, by the 2016 Cincinnati Reds. The Orioles are on pace to allow 338, easily shattering the record.
The Orioles have played 10 games against the Yankees, allowing 26 home runs to them alone. In six games against the Minnesota Twins, Baltimore pitchers allowed 23 home runs. They are done playing the Twins this year, but they’ll play the Yankees nine more times, including Wednesday night and Thursday afternoon.
The Orioles are not alone in allowing home runs. MLB hitters are homering in 3.4 percent of their plate appearances this year, up from 3.0 percent in 2018, and the Seattle Mariners (87 home runs allowed in 51 games) are also on pace to surpass the 2016 Reds.
Some positive regression seems likely for Baltimore pitchers too, with nearly half of their home runs allowed coming in just one-third of their games.
Not surprisingly, the Orioles rank last in the Majors in ERA by over half a run (5.74). If you’re looking for primary culprits for the volume of home runs allowed, we have David Hess (17), Dylan Bundy (11), Dan Straily (10), Andrew Cashner (9) and Alex Cobb (9). Cobb is currently on the injured list, and the nine homers he allowed have come in just three starts (12.1 innings).