Originally posted on Oriole Post  |  Last updated 5/4/12

As the Orioles head into Boston this week, they are playing really well and flying. I’m not if what we are seeing the real Birds, or what; however, they have been a nice, pleasant surprise.

They are in second place in the American League East with a 16-9 record; meanwhile, the Boston Red Sox are in last place in the division, as they are 11-13. The Red Sox seem out of sorts, and while lost two out of three to Oakland this week. It’s amazing what has happened to that organization since game 162 of last season, and if they had only won that game, plus ended up in the playoffs – would history be different?

Who knows. It seems that Boston is still trying to find its footing after last season’s debacle. Now, I’m sure the Orioles will be booed pretty badly up in Boston – especially Robert Andino – but after what they did in New York, they might do well up there.

Tonight, the Orioles square off against Jon Lester on the mound – who has owned them. For the Orioles, Wei-Yin Chen starts and hopes to continue his nice run so far.

***

In other thoughts, no matter what you think of Mariano Rivera, what happened to him Kansas City yesterday just absolutely sucks. As you all probably know, he tore the anterior cruciate ligament – or ACL -- in his right knee while chasing a fly ball during batting practice. He has dropped hints that he would retire at the end of the current season, and if that is still the case – what a loss.

I’m an Oriole fan, but you cannot discount the brilliance the man has had in his career – especially the postseason. As much as I hate seeing him on the mound against the Birds, Rivera has always carried himself with class, humility and has always been gracious with fans. I only say that because I have seen it with my own eyes over the years.

***

Yeesh, what the hell has happened to Albert Pujols? I’m surprised he took the money from the Angels and Arte Moreno last offseason, leaving the St. Louis Cardinals, where he built his legend.

He’s not homered for a month, is only batting a shade above .200 and obviously isn’t earning his paycheck. Meanwhile, the St. Louis Cardinals have not missed a beat, and lead their respective division.

I know Albert is in a new league and trying to learn the various pitchers and all; however, it is shocking how bad he has been.

Everyone expected the Angels to contend, or win the American League East. Now, they will be lucky to dig out the hole that was created for them due to their struggles.

***

Finally, Bryce Harper. Wow.

Over the past week, the kid has proven - so far - that he belongs in the majors. He has proven himself to be a sparkplug for that team, coming through with key hits and his overall solid play in the field. If you ever see him live - much I like I did on Tuesday night - you just can't keep your eyes off of him. Right now, it is looking like the Washington Nationals made the right decision in promoting him when they did. He has contributed mightly in every game for the Nationals so far. It's amazing what he is doing as a 19 year old!

It remains to be seen if Harper becomes a legend, or just another player; however, he is hacking it the majors and doing a pretty good job.

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