I heart baseball. I am from Northern Virginia, before the Expos moved to town under a new moniker (the Nationals), our region supported exclusively, the Baltimore Orioles. Like many others, I grew up cheering for the O's. As a fan of America's pastime and the Birds, I felt a responsibility to recruit my serious boyfriend at the time (now my husband) to the Cracker Jack loving, peanut eating cult. I looked at the schedule and decided the game between my Orioles and the Texas Rangers on August 21, 1993 would be the perfect day to indoctrinate him. You see, Nolan Ryan had announced his retirement at season's end and this was a waning opportunity to see both he and Cal Ripken, Jr go head to head, as Ryan was pitching. The Orioles won the game...in extra innings...we stayed until the very end and the husband was happy to join my cult.
Fast forward a hundred years later (give or take), I still consider myself a devotee of the Birds. Even if Peter Angelos is a giant turd from the planet, Shitstar...who has more money than half of the teams in MLB and a gorgeous ballpark at Camden Yards, yet he doesn't have the passion to invest in a winning team and won't sell the franchise. 1983 was the last time we won the Series. The last year of respectability was 1997, when we went wire-to-wire, only to lose a freakish series to the Indians in the ALCS:
Ahhhhhhh, let's recap....Picture it October 1997:
- Game 1: O's win at home
- Game 2: Grissom's 3-run homer off of Armando Benitez (memba him? Before he was our closer, he was Randy Myer's set up man...he wasn't great at either) Indians win
- Game 3: BOTTOM OF THE 12TH: 1-1 tie, Omar at the plate showing bunt, Grissom on third...ball was clearly fouled off, though - not called 'foul' by home plate umpire, ball gets away from Lenny Webster, Grissom scores, Davey Johnson argues to no avail, Indians win and celebrate obnoxiously
- Game 4: at the Jake a rather bizarre loss for the O's in a close game, that included a wild pitch and a strange play at the plate
- Game 5: O's win in Cleveland! Yay...back in it
- Game 6: back at the Yard in Baltimore, SCORELESS until the top of the 11th when Tony Fernandez homered for the Indians, bottom of the 11th, Brady Anderson (aka the love of my life) hit a two-out single...a pulse...UNTIL...Roberto Alomar was called out on strikes on a suspect (inside) pitch, probably because Alomar spat on an umpire the year before...revenge is a bitch and so is Robbie Alomar, who may or may not have AIDS... Indians advance to the World Series
- After the 97' season GM (and all around baseball genius) Pat Gillick's contract was not renewed and Manager (and all around baseball genius) Davey Johnson resigned because Angelos is quite possibly the worst creature in the Milky Way
- We haven't had a winning season since 1997...that's 12 years for those of you counting.
Anyway, back to reality...where the Orioles are terrible....and it's fall which means Yankees in post season play (ugh) and FOOTBALL!!! My Broncos are FIVE and 0. Josh McDaniels is exactly what Denver needed...as I suspected and tweeted about after Shanahan was (shockingly...to all, but me) fiiired. Shugabetes was traded along with his insulin and tampons to the Bears for Kyle Orton...who I'll admit...I was skeptical about...but even I can't be right all the time and I'm now riding high on the Neck Beard bandwagon. Peter Angelos could learn a few things from Pat Bowlen...like how to act like a human being and how to run a successful sports franchise. Yeah, I hear you...there are like 11 more games to go this season...but the last time my Broncos went FIVE and 0 to start the season, was 1998 and they won the Super Bowl, the very same year that my Orioles began their demise.