Amidst all the excitement of the Washington Capitals playoff push, Duke winning a national title for the first time in nine years, and all the moves the Ravens have made in the off-season, the Orioles 2010 season began last night.
I wish I cared, I really do.
I grew up a huge O’s fan. I lived about a mile from Memorial Stadium and used to walk to games on a regular basis.
I remember one game when I was a kid, it was 105 degrees outside. We were sitting in the bleachers. My family was all heading for the concourse and the shade, and I sat there keeping score.
I knew every player’s jersey number, even bench players and coaches. I followed their stats, played baseball themed video games, on every video game console I had.
I had a great game for my Apple IIe, called Statomatic. There were no graphics and the computer played it for you but I had notebooks full of stats from the games.
I played fantasy baseball, every year, and looked forward to doing the draft with my friends (we used to have draft parties or go to a bar and draft with a few beers). I made sure I had Cal Ripken on my team every year.
That was then, this is now.
My interest in baseball has waned more and more every year since Cal retired. I think it had started a bit before that, but he was my hero and was enough of a draw to keep me somewhat interested.
After 12 straight losing seasons, with no end in sight, the Orioles have become a two month boredom stopper to me, from the end of the Stanley Cup Finals to the beginning of the Ravens preseason.
They may be heading in the right direction, but after hearing we blew a 9th inning lead last night and left a ton of men in scoring position, my first thought this morning was “Same old Orioles”.
I will say that I have a mild interest in seeing what Matt Weiters can do over a full season. Matusz intrigues me a little bit, as well. And Adam Jones when healthy, is a great player and on his way to being a superstar.
That being said, I am not an apologist and can not give them a pass while looking for the bright side in what ultimately will probably amount to a 13th straight losing season.
I’ve heard a lot of people saying 78 wins would be a successful season for the Birds. 78? Really? That’s not even .500 people. Who decided that 78 was the magic number that would show the Orioles were on the upswing?
Look, I know winning the World Series is out of the question but can we at least aim for being competitive? How about even just getting out of the cellar of the AL East?
What about bringing in someone people could get excited about? Miggy, Millwood and Garrett Atkins are not people I care about. I know they are stop gaps until some of the other can’t miss guys make it through the system, but they don’t spark an ounce of interest for me.
As far as can’t miss prospects go, I’ve seen too many of them miss, to buy into the hype around them. Adam Loewen, Chris Ray, Hayden Penn, come to mind immediately.
Let’s go CAPS!!!