Mortal Locks and Oriole Magic

May 26, 2008 |

There’s something thing to keep in mind before handing out mortal locks. If the guy who is arguably the best/most important player on the team your picking is somewhat hurt, you should think long and hard before announcing their invincibility. Needless to say, before game three when I proclaimed that the Piston’s were unbeatable, I did not foresee Rodney Stuckey logging more minutes than Chauncey Billups. Without their floor general, a Piston’s win in game four should still happen, but a win in Boston in game five just became significantly harder. Maybe Paul Pierce will pull and hamstring tonight to even things out.
Who would have thought that the Orioles would enter Memorial Day at 24-25? They have been competitive in almost every game, their pitching has been light years better than anyone thought, and considering that most of the off-season talk centered around whether or not they would lose 100 games, this team has been one of the surprises of baseball.
Now the downside. Thanks to the starts of Toronto and Tampa, 24-25 leaves the Orioles alone in last place, with the Yankees and Red Sox coming to town. While the Orioles have been extremely tough at home and the Yankees, and especially the Red Sox have struggled on the road, this week’s games will decide if the O’s keep their overachieving season going, or if they fall away from the AL East pack.
It’s not fair that a team one game under 500 is in last place. You never see that this far into a season. If the O’s go at least 3-3 this week, their unexpected ’08 run could continue on into the Summer. If they go 2-4 or worse, it’s going to be hard for them to play the “disrespect” card, when they are all alone in last place.
In February, nobody believed that this season would be at all competitive for the boys from Baltimore. Through April and May, they’ve made some believers. This is a big week if they intend to keep those believers.