The season has come to an end for the Baltimore Orioles. What a ride it has been. I’m off the crazy train and trying to get readjusted to society and preparing for a long winter without baseball.
I’m now back from a long, winding, and exhilarating trip to New York City to catch the Orioles. I decided at the last minute to trek up to the Big Apple (while very sick) after seeing the Birds pull out another, tight and epic extra-inning win on Thursday night.
As we all know, the Orioles lost to the Yankees, 3-1, and their 2012 campaign that was so improbable when Spring Training started came to an end.
Once again, the Orioles blew opportunities at the plate and only mustered a single run in eighth inning and managed to get the bases loaded in the frame; however, nothing came out of it.
In the end, huge and rotund southpaw, C.C. Sabathia did the job he is paid an exorbitant amount of money to do – serve as an ace for the Yankees, go deep into a game, and win.
His teammates came through for him and managed to score two runs off of Oriole starter Jason Hammel – who did a fine job on the mound. However, they added a vital insurance run as the struggling Curtis Granderson took reliever Troy Patton deep in the seventh inning.
Sitting in the upper deck (I mean, in the very upper reaches) of Yankee Stadium, I thought the Orioles would find another way to come back and avoid elimination in another playoff game. Then again, the way Sabathia was pitching, the Orioles might as well have been down by a score of 9-1.
I’m sure we will spend the next few months wondering if Nate McLouth’s long shot that was barely foul – or not; however, I’ll always remember the 2012 season for the Orioles.
There will be time for analysis as to where they went wrong in the ALDS, and how the bats in the middle of the lineup were so silent for much of the series.
The Orioles are a freaking good team; alas, the Yankees are probably better for now.
However, I’ll not focus on that. I want to remember how a team that no one thought had a chance to compete, do so and shocked the baseball world. I’ll always remember attending two playoff games with family and them suddenly (out fo the blue) becoming baseball fans and enjoying the Orioles.
I’ll look back this year and see how a moribund fan base looking for something – if anything – out of their baseball team finally get their wishes answered. A sport which was on life-support in the region was revived and seemingly (for now) came back bigger and better than ever.
This team has a good, young core along with an incredible leader in Buck Showalter and a general manager Dan Duquette – who perhaps only got the job out of default – and made the improbable into something possible.
The Orioles learned how to win, compete and play as a team with only one agenda – winning.
I don’t want to get all sappy and poetic on how big money sport brings a community together; however, in the this case, the Orioles accomplished that mission.
I’ll also regret having not seen a Washington-Baltimore World Series this year, but all things considered, the Mid-Atlantic had a hell of a year with the sport.
In a little more than four months from now, pitchers and catchers will report to their respective camps.
In six months, I’m sure Camden Yards will be rocking for yet another Opening Day.
Until then, let’s look back on the Orioles and be proud of them.
We all will be waiting until next year.