As I sit here in the pressbox, Anthony is currently building an ark with his fellow fans in the stands. In between the raindrops he sends in this dispatch.
On Sundays, I usually have lunch with some friends before the game at one of the fine Baltimore establishments across the street from Camden Yards.
Before this season, the topic of conversation would have centered around what the Ravens and the other teams the NFL would be doing. However, that topic one came up once that day.
When it did, the general consensus was that, "um, we're not that interested in them now".
"Maybe when the season is over. Or in November."
I said, "I don't have the bandwidth for that now".
I've been hanging out with my group for over nine years now, ever since I decided to purchase season tickets for the Orioles. On Sunday, that was the first football was never really brought up in late August.
With their win last night, the Orioles have matched their win total from last year. I and many, many others didn't give the Birds a shot to compete in baseball.
Now, they have brought back the collective dialogue back to baseball -- rather than football 24x7.
That's good indeed. As well, the playoff invoices that just came in the mail, baseball is completely on my mind.
If the Orioles sweep Toronto - a team they should beat - that would be awesome. However, they have a meat-grinder during the final six weeks of the season. With Oakland, Tampa Bay, Los Angeles (Angels), Detroit all in the wild card case, they have to win as many as they can.
They have the White Sox at home on the docket next week, then have a huge weekend series with the Yankees on the road, along with the Blue Jays again.
It take will probably take 90+ wins to get into the wild card play-in game, and the Orioles can do it despite their patchwork lineup.
They acquired Joe Saunders in a trade from the Arizona Diamondbacks, and in turn, the Orioles sent Matt Lindstrom into the desert. Well, anytime you can trade a reliever for a starter -- you do it.
Finally, I am wondering about Dylan Bundy - the uber-talented youngster pitching in Double-A right now.
I have thought since the middle of the summer, if the Orioles still are in the race, Bundy would be promoted in September.
I figured all bets were off it that happened, and now more so than ever, fans will see Bundy in the black and orange. I still don't think it's prudent to promote him so early, but with the Orioles in the playoff, you have to take chances.
Much like the Washington Nationals are facing with Stephen Strasburg and his innings debate, there's no guarantee that the Orioles will be contenders in 2013. Then again, they could be perennial contenders -- or fall back into the wilderness of losing.
A few seasons ago, the Milwaukee Brewers rode the back of C.C. Sabathia to the playoffs. They didn't get to the World Series; however, it revitalized the franchise and made them believe anything could happen.
That could happen in Baltimore.
That being said, the Orioles should go all-in and use all the resources available.
If that means promoting Bundy and making more moves, so be it.
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