Matt Wieters’ recent slump has been well documented here on GT Pros, but there was finally some promise from him at the plate tonight. In his four at bats in tonight’s game, he saw 21 pitches, which was the most by any Orioles player tonight. He was more patient and he benefitted by hitting a HR to right field in the 2nd inning. Hopefully tonight’s success will rejuvenate his game at the plate because the Orioles really need it right now. Here’s a video of his home run tonight.
Heading into the weekend, Matt Wieters was working to get out of a major hitting slump. The Yankees pitchers, however, were able to control him and he went 1-11 in the series. The slump has obviously affected his team as well as they have lost three of the last four and all have been 3 run losses. His hitting woes wouldn’t be as big of a concern if he was getting on base and forcing long counts, but he has been too aggressive at the plate lately. In his 11 ABs over the weekend, he saw 31 pitches, which means he is swinging early and making contact (only had 2 strikeouts). He’s not striking out so that’s a good sign, but being a little more patient at the plate would certainly help him come out of his slump. He needs to fix things soon or else the Orioles may find themselves last in the division after they play their next 13 games against very good teams (Rays, Dodgers, Blue Jays, and A’s). They have clearly cooled down as a team, but luckily it’s a long season and anyone can win their division this year.
Through Matt Wieters’ first four games of the season, he was hitting .429 with a HR and 3 RBIs. He did a great job of making contact and getting on base, but recently things have changed. In his last 5 games, he has gone 1-15 with 2 walks. Wieters has proven to be a consistent major league hitter, but his approach is off right now and he is in a mini slump.
With Nick Markakis, Adam Jones, and Chris Davis in front of him, Wieters has multiple chances each game to hit with runners in scoring position. All three have been on a tear recently, which means pitchers are pitching cautiously to them and going after Wieters. A day or two off where he can get his head right would do him well, and hopefully help fix his issues at the plate. He’ll continue to have RBI opportunities and big at bats, so he should come out of his slump sooner rather than later.
On Wednesday, Wieters went 1-4 with an RBI for the Orioles in an 8-7 win for the Rays. He responded on Thursday by going 1-3 with a walk and a run. The Orioles won game 3 of the series and now sit at 2-1. They looked very impressive in their first series and Wieters should get a ton of RBI opportunities with Markakis, Jones, and Davis hitting in front of him. He’s due for a big season and we’ll keep track of every game of his.
Update: Wieters continues to get on base, but this time it was from a walk. He took a walk with Adam Jones on second, and both scored after Chris Davis hit a homerun. So far Wieters is 2-2 with a homerun, double, 2 walks, 2 RBIs, and 2 runs. That’s a pretty good start to the season!
Update: In his second at bat, he walked to load the bases. The Orioles were unable to capitalize on that opportunity though, and didn’t score a run. In his third at bat, he hit a double with no one on base.
In the Orioles’ first game of the season, Matt Wieters hit a homerun. Adam Jones doubled with Wieters on deck, so Wieters was able to collect 2 RBIs off his homerun in the first inning. He had a great spring, so it’s a good sign to see him continue his hot streak. What makes the home run even better is that it came against the Rays (a divisional opponent) and David Price, the 2012 AL Cy Young. I’ll post an update on the rest of his performance later.
Since the site is new, I will be making additions in the next few weeks. I expect to add more baseball and golf information to the site, but until then I will post a few season previews of former Yellow Jackets. The first player up in this list is Matt Wieters, a catcher for the Baltimore Orioles.
Wieters was drafted fifth overall in the 2007 MLB Draft by the Baltimore Orioles. Like most top prospects, he quickly worked his way through the minor leagues and made his debut in May of the 2009 season. Through his first three and a half seasons, he has turned into a two time All Star and a Gold Glove winner. He has shown impressive power as a catcher and helped lead the Orioles back to the playoffs last season.
With a little over a week left before Opening Day, Wieters is ready to go. He has been on fire through spring training, hitting over .400 and driving in runs. Spring training statistics should be taken with a grain of salt, but it is nice to see him making contact with the ball. The Orioles are going to need him to hit for average and power this year if they want to make the playoffs. Wieters also plays exceptional defense, which makes him incredibly valuable.
If Wieters is going to take the next step though, he needs to take control of the pitching staff. The Orioles have more depth in their rotation this year than they have had in a long time and it will be up to Wieters to call effective games. If he can work with his pitchers to improve their performance, I really see the Orioles making the playoffs as a wild card team. The Yankees and Red Sox are down right now and they need to take advantage of the opportunity. Wieters has turned into an All Star catcher for the Orioles and they will need him to produce this year if they want to repeat their success from last season.
Information taken from Wikipedia and ESPN.