First, peep the “Orioles Magic 2008” video (courtesy of Big League Stew) that’s been playing at Camden Yards following victories and stars Kevin Millar, Adam Jones, Jeremy Guthrie, George Sherrill, what appears to be Dennis Sarfate,
some other dude Adam Loewen and a whole lotta awesome.
Moving on, a softball teammate of mine and Red Sox fan was lamenting Boston’s loss to Baltimore yesterday and how bad the Red Sox have been lately, which is laughable considering they’re the defending champs and off to a 24-19 start. Meanwhile, it’s series like this one with Boston that are the playoff equivalent for O’s fans. And a two-game sweep, sad as it may be, is cause for excessive celebration.
That’s the way it is for Baltimorons every spring. The team — usually a cobbled-together mix of promising youngsters (Nick Markakis, Jones, etc.), mid-priced veterans (Millar, Aubrey Huff, etc.) and shoe-string starters (Guthrie, Daniel Cabrera, etc.) — competes with the Yankees and Red Sox for a couple of months before complete implosion come summertime.
And this isn’t just me talking out of my ass, it’s math. Baltimore is 21-19, and all is right in Birdland, but check out the records for this team through 40 games (and then through May) over the past five seasons*:
- ’07: 18-22 (27-27)
- ’06: 18-22 (25-28)
- ’05: 26-14 (31-20) (Did this really happen?)
- ’04: 20-20 (24-23)
- ’03: 18-22 (27-27)
That’s a cumulative winning percentage of .500 (and .517), with the worst mark being .450 (and .472). Now, let’s look at how each of these seasons ended, shall we?
- ’07: 69-93
- ’06: 70-92
- ’05: 74-88
- ’04: 78-84 (Nice!)
- ’03: 71-91
That’s a cumulative, um, winning percentage of .447 overall and .414 from June through October. God, that’s depressing, but this is Birdland: hanging around .500 through May and then bottoming out for the final four months of the season. That scoreboard video sure is sweet though!
* Arbitrary sample size based on the amount of time I had to spend on this.