Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Milt Pappas, 1991 Crown/Coca-Cola All-Time Orioles #351
So here’s your anomaly for the week: today, Oriole rookie pitcher Zach Britton went 2-for-3 at the plate with a run scored. With 3 interleague games left to be played in National League parks (July 1-3 at Atlanta), Baltimore pitchers have collected 7 hits in 15 official at-bats, a .467 average. They’ve had a pair of doubles, a pair of RBI, and the run that Britton scored. The lefthander got the party started last Friday with an RBI double in his first major league at-bat, and is 3-for-5 (.600) on the year. On Sunday, first-baseman-turned-journeyman-pitcher Chris Jakubauskas collected a pair of singles in three trips to the plate. Jake Arrieta dumped a shallow fly ball into no-man’s land to plate a run on Monday. Last night, Jeremy Guthrie doubled in three at-bats in a losing effort. The only O’s pitcher to bat this year without producing a hit is Brian Matusz, who had a groundout and a flyout in two AB’s on Sunday.
Since interleague play began in 1997, Birds pitchers had never totaled more than five hits in any season. What's more, pitchers on the other 13 American League clubs had combined for 9 hits in 120 at-bats (.075) in 2011 entering play today. Of course, the current batch of slugging Oriole pitchers are not going to threaten Milt Pappas' 11 career homers any time soon - that's the team record at the position. But it's better than watching Daniel Cabrera alternately flail away at the plate or refuse to lift the bat from his shoulder.