Every Orioles fan remembers vividly where they were and what they were doing September 6 1995, and now you can add another day to the list of “most important dates in franchise history”, May 29th 2009- the day the “savior” arrives in Baltimore.
I was in my car when I got the text from the WSNT text service that Matt Wieters was going to make his Oriole debut Friday night against the Tigers at Camden Yards.
Driving while receiving exciting news like this is not safe as I almost got into an accident. After forwarding the text to my friends I finally arrived to write my thoughts down on the subject.
Wieters is another name in the long list of can’t miss” prospects to come up in recent years but the first Oriole farm hand with this much buzz since Jeffery Hammonds (who for whatever reason is my favorite Oriole) and Ben McDonald.
Neither Hammonds nor McDonald panned out and if Matt Wieters has the same fate Orioles fans will find their nearest roof edge and contemplate jumping.
All signs are pointing to Wieters not just being a good player, but a great player who many believe will end up in Cooperstown at the end of his career.
Wieters has not even had a major league at bat and already Orioles fans are deeming him to be the savior of this franchise, and I am one of those people.
Wieters is hitting .285 with 5 home runs and 26 RBI’s this year in Norfolk but many felt his performance in Spring Training warranted him a spot on the Opening Day roster. The Orioles have been careful in grooming Wieters, but now the “training wheels” are off and will finally see if he is as good as advertised.
Matt Wieters represents fans, interest, hope and excitement for an organization that has toiled in anonymity not just nationally, but in their own city. Finally there is a reason to go to the ball park and watch the Orioles.
Major League Baseball is littered with the once promising careers of “can’t miss prospects” that missed, and Orioles fans know this all too well.
The best thing would be to quell your expectations for a kid that has yet to see a pitch at the Major League level, but given the despair the Orioles have caused for the last 11 years, it is okay for fans to expect greatness from the kid.
Personally I am ecstatic to see Greg Zaun and anemic bat finally sit on the bench and I will now try to go to every game to see Wieters.
I hate to put any pressure on you Matt, but you have the weight of the city on your shoulders so be prepared.
Welcome to Baltimore Matt and for the love of God please live up to the hype for your sake and the safety of Orioles fans everywhere!!!