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Can the Orioles Keep Up Their Early Season Magic? 24

Posted on June 10, 2012 by Dean Hybl

Late game celebrations have been a regular occurrence for the Baltimore Orioles is 2012.

If you are under the age of 35 you may find it hard to believe, but for nearly two decades, the Baltimore Orioles were the class of Major League Baseball and terms such as “The Oriole Way” and “Oriole Magic” were just as familiar to baseball fans as “Red Sox Nation” is today.

With the 2012 season now nearly a third of the way complete, it is way too early to declare Baltimore “back” among the upper echelon teams in baseball, but for the first time in quite a while the future in Baltimore does appear to be promising.

Following back-to-back extra inning victories over the Philadelphia Phillies, the Orioles sport an impressive 34-26 record and are right in the mix of the highly competitive American League East.

The hot early start is definitely a reason for fans of a franchise that hasn’t posted a winning record since 1997 to be excited, but this is not the first time in the last 15 years that Baltimore has teased fans into June.

In 2005 the Orioles had a 42-28 record on June 21st and a two game lead in the AL East. A 3-2 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays the next day started a stretch in which Baltimore lost 11 of 14 games and 60 of their final 92 games to end with a 74-88 record and 21 games out in the standings. Read the rest of this entry →

Baltimore Orioles Keep Taking Two Steps Forward and One Step Back 5

Posted on July 09, 2010 by Dean Hybl

Garrett Atkins was to be the answer at first base, but instead hit one home run and is no longer an Oriole.

The All-Star break is coming at an opportune time for the Baltimore Orioles as they will have a chance to lick their wounds and try to build on some of their recent successes.

Granted, with the worst record in baseball there hasn’t been a lot to of positive moments, but the team has recently shown a penchant for late inning comebacks that could be something to help carry them grow some momentum through the remainder of the season.

Since reaching 50 losses before 20 victories, the Orioles have shown a little more life over the last couple weeks. While their season-best four game winning streak did include three wins over the Nationals, Baltimore did come back to post wins in games that they certainly would have lost earlier this season.

Even their win over the division leading Texas Rangers in the first of a four game series leading up to the All-Star break was the result of an unexpected late-game comeback.

Baltimore looked defeated early in the game as Texas scored four early runs and led 4-1 entering the seventh inning. However, Felix Pie illustrated how much he was missed during his long injury layoff by opening the seventh with a home run. The Birds scored another run in that inning and then three in the eighth to steal a victory from the Rangers.

Of course for every step forward is another step to the side or backwards. After winning five of six games, the O’s won only one of their next seven games before the comeback win over Texas. Read the rest of this entry →

Trembley’s Gone, But Orioles Still Have Lots Of Work Ahead 28

Posted on June 06, 2010 by Dean Hybl

Before their struggles of the last 13 years, the Baltimore Orioles were one of the best teams in baseball.

The Baltimore Orioles did the right thing to relieve Dave Trembley of his duties as manager, but  being outscored 19-2 by the Boston Red Sox in their first two games after his departure is a reminder that the troubles for this once proud franchise run much deeper than just one person.

It is difficult to remember that this is the same Orioles’ franchise that between 1966 and 1997 was arguably as significant and successful an organization as any in professional baseball.

During that span, the Orioles won three World Series, played in the World Series six times and reached the playoffs 10 times. Only the Oakland A’s with four World Series titles for their 10 playoff appearances and six World Series trips had a better showing during that stretch.

From the beginning of divisional play in 1969 through 1997, the Orioles won the American League East eight times while the New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox and Toronto Blue Jays each claimed the division five times.

In addition, with the opening of Camden Yards in 1992, the Orioles completely changed the landscape for how teams approached new stadiums. Most of the new ballparks opened over the last 18 years have been patterned after the ballpark in Baltimore that was the first to combine modern amenities with a retro feel that makes going to a baseball game a special experience.

So, given that impressive history, it illustrated just how bad things have gone over the last decade that in recent days a number of members of the national media have characterized the Orioles as the least relevant team in Major League Baseball.

Given that Kansas City and Pittsburgh have been worse than the Orioles for significantly longer, I’m not sure I completely agree with the characterization, but sadly they aren’t far from earning that distinction. Read the rest of this entry →

Time For Some Pie in Baltimore 2

Posted on September 02, 2009 by Dean Hybl
After a tough start, Felix Pie has turned it around for the Baltimore Orioles.

After a tough start, Felix Pie has turned it around for the Baltimore Orioles.

With Adam Jones potentially done for the season with an ankle injury, much-maligned Felix Pie will get a chance to prove that he belongs in the everyday lineup for the Baltimore Orioles come 2010.

If you will remember, Pie began the season as the starting leftfielder for the Orioles, but after registering an abysmal.157 average in April it didn’t take him long to get buried on the Baltimore bench.

Read the rest of this entry →

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