“Birdland” by the Numbers

May 07, 2009 | Glenn Clark

In commercials that you have almost certainly seen recently, MASN (the Orioles’ regional sports network) has invented a new, seemingly “mythical” place called “Birdland.” It’s really quite the concept. Come out to Camden Yards, and you never know what amazing thing you might see. It’s really quite the concept!

Unfortunately, the only Magic that has come from Camden Yards in the last 12 seasons is the absolute inability to win baseball games. No one is going to Camden Yards for much of any experience (be it mythical or not), and yet the Orioles have chosen to turn a blind eye and continue to pretend as though no one notices.

Remarkably, like many of you; I still LOVE the Orioles passionately. I still go to “Birdland” hoping to see something I can remember for a long time. And I’ve been forturnate to! I’ll have much more on my own “Defining Moments” in Birdland in the weeks to come.

I have decided that I will now refer to the 1998-present era of Orioles baseball as “The Birdland Era.” It has quite the ring to it, doesn’t it? It’s the era where the organization was absolutely horrible; and yet no one did anything to make it any better.

We have a listener who is a permanent resident of “Birdland.” His name is Till, and he lives in Roland Park. Till asked me to do some research a few weeks ago; and thanks to out crack staff of interns (who I affectionately call “Tamir” and “Pugsley”) from Beth Tfiloh, I am finally able to share the reality of the “Birdland” era with you. (Edit from GMC: To the wise guys, I checked the research myself; and I was simply looking to credit a couple of kids for hard work. All of the info is available in the Orioles Media Guide. You could do it yourself.)

The year by year records from the “Birdland” era….

1998: 79-83
1999: 78-84
2000: 74-88
2001: 63-98
2002: 67-95
2003: 71-91
2004: 78-84
2005: 74-88
2006: 70-92
2007: 69-93
2008: 68-93
2009: 11-17 (As of May 6)

Overall W-L in “Birdland” Era: 802-1007 (.443), 205 games below .500

Now, as Till pointed out; much of the Orioles’ plight can be attributed to their record against the Yankees and Red Sox. So, he asked me to research their records during the “Birdland” era against those teams. Here you go….

Vs. the Yankees

1998: 3-9
1999: 4-9
2000: 5-7
2001: 5-13
2002: 6-13
2003: 6-13
2004: 5-14
2005: 7-11
2006: 7-12
2007: 9-9 (Hallelujah!)
2008: 7-11
2009: 2-1 (as of May 6)

Overall: 61-122 (.333), 61 games below .500

Vs. the Red Sox

1998: 6-6
1999: 5-7
2000: 5-7
2001: 9-10
2002: 6-13
2003: 9-10
2004: 10-9
2005: 8-10
2006: 3-15
2007: 6-12
2008: 6-12
2009: 0-4 (as of May 6)

Overall: 73-115 (.388), 42 games under .500

Combined Overall: 134-237 (.361), 103 games under .500

Remember, the Orioles are a total of 205 games under .500 in the entire “Birdland” era; so more than half of that comes from just the Yankees and Red Sox.

In the coming weeks, I’ll be offering fun memories of the “Birdland” era, as I watch commercials about the one time the Orioles hit around Mike Mussina, and the awesome season Aubrey Huff had.

This is Birdland!