After two games, both of which were decided early on, the Orioles are at .500 ahead of the team's series finale against the Red Sox on Sunday.
And with sheer dread taking over after game one, and optimism rising after game two, here are some overreactions to the first two games of the Orioles' season:
Alex Cobb is set for a good enough season to play himself out of Baltimore
Cobb's first two years in Baltimore weren't what he envisioned after he signed a four-year, $57 million dollar deal ahead of the 2018 season.
In 2018, he had a 4.90 ERA with a 5-15 record as the Orioles were the worst team in the sport. Last year, he made just three starts and posted a 10.95 ERA before an injury derailed his season.
But after he underwent surgery last summer, Cobb's first outing of 2020 against the Red Sox was a major step in the right direction.
"There's no feeling like sitting at the entrance and giving every single one of your teammates a high-five or a fist pound and thanking them for working behind you and them saying how nice it was to play behind you," Cobb said. "I didn't forget it, it's one of my favorite feelings in the game and it's something I've wanted to have for a long time. I know it's been over a year since it happened, but I never forgot that feeling. Love it. It's my favorite."
Cobb threw 5 ⅓ innings, allowed four hits and just one earned run while he struck out six and walked none. And manager Brandon Hyde said he didn't even think Cobb had his best stuff.
If that's the case for Cobb's first start of the season, he could play himself out of an Orioles uniform.
With just one season after 2020 on his deal, his contract is certainly moveable for the Orioles if they want to ship Cobb off. The trade deadline is Aug. 31, meaning they've already got just over a month to show Cobb to the rest of the league.
And if the Orioles fall off, like most have predicted, Cobb might be the shining star on a team destined for another top draft choice.
"It's a very small step in this journey, but you have to start somewhere," Cobb said. "I'm really happy we were able to do that today. There has been a lot of work put in post-surgery and rehab, and I'm really thankful for everyone who helped me, and it's really nice to see results immediately."
Hanser Alberto could bat well over .400 against lefties in 2020
The Orioles haven't been shy about the sentiment that anything could happen in the 2020 season. They've meant that as it relates to wins and losses, but it certainly represents sample sizes, too.
And if there were a year for weird sample sizes, it's this one.
After a 3-for-4 performance against lefties, that nearly was a perfect afternoon, Alberto continued his assault on left-handed pitching, a trend for his entire career.
Last year, he batted .398 against left-handed pitching in 227 plate appearances and slugged five home runs and 11 doubles. So while it might not seem like a stretch to say Alberto could dominate just a tick better than he did a year ago against lefties, there's a chance he clears the bar easily.
In a year of small sample sizes, a hot two months is all it takes for Alberto to post video game numbers against lefties. If there were a year, it's this once.
Austin Hays is in line for a dominant season as a leadoff hitter
After a disappointing 0-for-3 start to the season for Hays on Opening Day, he responded with a 2-for-5 performance in the season's second game. And through eight at-bats, Hays has yet to strike out this season.
A year ago, Hays had an expected batting average of .313 with an exit velocity average of 91 MPH. This year, through two games, he's already put the barrel on the bat once in 15 pitches, something he did three times a year ago on 291 pitches.
If Hays is able to continue his steady improvement after an impressive 21 game stint in the majors from a season ago, there's no reason to think that Hays, 25, could find himself in line to be the Orioles' table-setter for a handful of seasons.
A year ago, he posted an on-base percentage of .373 in 75 plate appearances. If he's able to continue that trend, and continue to make contact, he won't soon leave his spot atop the lineup.
"No secret, I like guys who make contact, I like guys who make hard contact," Hyde said of the Orioles top three hitters in the lineup. "And all three of those guys are going to give you a competitive at-bat. They're in there for the fight."
With so much youth on the team and in the pipeline, a player like Hays becoming a stalwart of future teams is exactly what the Orioles are looking for.
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Overreacting to the Orioles first two games of the year originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington