The Orioles have 16 games left in the 2013 season. However, after what most of us saw this week with the resurgent New York Yankees taking three out of four from the Orioles, could it be over for them?
Despite a comeback by the Birds on Thursday, after their loss, I figure they will now have a proverbial hill – ok, mountain – to climb for the rest of the season. They could not afford to lose three in a row and not capitalize on the Rays’ awful past three weeks of losing.
After Jim Johnson blew the game in the ninth inning off a wild pitch, with the game tied at five, what happens with him?
One would think, if the Orioles miss the playoffs, how much blame will Buck Showalter get for being loyal to his guy? If Johnson had simply converted half his blown saves, the Orioles would be in the driver’s seat in terms of holding a playoff spot.
How the Yankees are winning, I have no idea; however, they have a team full of professionals and seem to will a way to victory.
Meanwhile, the Orioles at 77-69, while a very good team, seem unable to get the little things done right.
It cost them on Thursday night.
Now, the Orioles are still only 2 ½ games out of the final wild card spot. For the most part, the Red Sox (a total surprise) will win the American League East and either the Texas Rangers or Oakland Athletics will win the West or take the first wild card spot.
The Orioles have some ground to make up and could make a run at the playoffs. Sadly, they have to now compete against the surging Kansas City Royals, and the Cleveland Indians along with Yankees who are ahead of them.
However, they are only 24-26 since the All-Star break. Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun noted that the Orioles have only hone 12-17 since the 11th of August.
It goes without saying; they have to kill it on this road trip. They have to steamroll over Toronto (who have given them trouble over the season), somehow slow down the Red Sox and then go head-to-head with the Rays. This will all be done on the road.
It is quite amazing how everything has come about this late in the season and how competitive the sport is. As we all have seen, things can turn around very quickly.
This team is resilient and seems to have a never-say-die attitude. If they can’t succeed on this road trip, they will sadly be playing golf in October.