The Baltimore Orioles finished in second place in the A.L.East, only 2 games behind the Yankees with a 93-69 (57.4%) record. They then won the Wild Card Game against the Rangers to advance to the playoffs against the Yankees. The Yankees won a hard fought five game series over the Orioles, to end their season. Here is a look at the players who made the biggest impacts in 2012, in my opinion:
Team MVP: Adam Jones - 27-year old righty swinging CF Adam Jones put everything together in 2012. He played in 162 games for the Orioles last year and he was 186 of 648 (.287 avg, .839 OPS) with 103 runs scored, 32 homers, 82 RBIs and 16 stolen bases.
Best Pitcher: Jim Johnson - The Orioles won a lot of close games in 2012, and 29-year old righty closer Jim Johnson had a lot to do with that. Johnson pitched in 71 games (0 starts) for the Orioles last year and he was 2-1 with 51 saves, a 2.49 ERA and a 1.02 WHIP. He only gave up 55 hits and 15 walks in 68 2/3 innings for the Orioles this year while whiffing 41 batters.
Biggest Surprise: Chris Tillman - 24-year old righty starting pitcher Chris Tillman might not have been in the playoff rotation for the Orioles, but he turned in a great year for them. Tillman pitched in 15 games (all starts) for the Orioles last year and he was 9-3 with a 2.93 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP. Tillman only gave up 66 hits and 24 walks in 86 innings last year while whiffing 66….which is pretty impressive.
Biggest Disappointment: Jake Arrieta - 26-year old righty starting pitcher Jake Arrieta just continues to disappoint for the Orioles. He pitched in 24 games (18 starts) in which he was 3-9 with a 6.20 ERA and a 1.37 WHIP.