Showalter impressed with new Orioles slugger, who now has 5 homers in past 5 games
By Dave Sessions
Special to MLB.com |
ARLINGTON -- Buck Showalter was heaping praise on his new slugger, Mark Trumbo, on Friday night. And that was before Trumbo unloaded for two home runs in the seventh inning of the Orioles' 11-5 win over the Rangers.
Trumbo drilled a two-run shot off starter Martin Perez to bring the Orioles within 5-3. And then, after homers by Jonathan Schoop and Nolan Reimold got Baltimore the lead, Trumbo came to bat again. This time, he connected off the third pitcher in the inning, Andrew Faulkner, for a three-run shot. That completed a nine-run frame and turned a 5-1 deficit into a 10-5 advantage.
He now has five home runs in his past five games, including three in the first two games of the series in Arlington.
"Trumbo's a different level," Schoop said. "Respect, you know. He's got big pop."
Trumbo became the first player in Orioles history to homer twice in the same inning. No O's player had had a five-RBI inning since at least 1984.
"That's amazing to me, all the great Orioles, that's never happened twice in one inning," Showalter said.
"I'm not going to jinx him," Showalter said when asked about Trumbo's torrid start. "But obviously he's been in a good spot since the day he walked into [Spring Training in] Sarasota. This atmosphere he's in fits him well and the guys have really drawn to him. He fits the way we try to do things and need to do things. He's been a real solid contributor early on in the season. He's been good -- that goes without saying."
Trumbo also isn't ready to crow about his power prowess just yet, either, not with 152 games left.
"I don't want to overthink it," Trumbo said. "In the past I've been a little streaky when it comes to the power. It's always a nice thing when it happens for us."
Though he's only been with the Orioles for 10 games, Trumbo has impressed Showalter with his studious approach to hitting.
Trumbo hit a solo shot off Cole Hamels on Thursday night in the Orioles' loss to the Rangers. Trumbo is 5-for-15 (.333) in his career against Hamels, with two homers.
"The thing that's been impressive about him is what a student of hitting he is," Showalter said before the game. "There's not many pitchers that he doesn't have some history or thought about. He's a real watcher, a very cerebral guy. He's not just some brute up there trying to see how far he can hit it. He's got an idea when he goes up there what he's trying to do."
Being able to hit with power straightaway and to the opposite field, as he did Thursday, contributes significantly to Trumbo's value, Showalter said. On Friday, he smashed one homer to left and another to center.
"You don't get into the 30s in home runs and not have the ability to hit the ball out of different parts of the park -- it just doesn't happen," Showalter said.
Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.