FanDuel - WFBC

April 14, 2007

Winning Isn't Everything: My Baltimore Orioles could be playoff contenders, and I don't like it.

posted by justgary to baseball at 07:37 AM - 21 comments

They need one more big bat.

posted by zane71 at 10:45 AM on April 14

What a whiner. And kind of a shitty writer (because adding J.D. Drew to a team could never make that team better). And a blowhard: "The damage to baseball [from the Jeffrey Maier incident] was incalculable, and it only got worse."

posted by yerfatma at 10:50 AM on April 14

And yet: 83 wins? If the pitching comes together, if former-MVP shortstop Miguel Tejada doesn't get too disgruntled, if young outfielder Nick Markakis is for real ... If all those things go right, this team—even this team—can totally win four more games than it loses. 11 games into the season with a 5-6 record. If they keep up this blistering pace, they'll eek out a nice 73 wins.

posted by jerseygirl at 11:13 AM on April 14

The Cardinals just peaked at the right time last year much like the White Sox did the previous year as far as the orioles they seem to do well for awhile and by mid june their out of it just an observation I 've been seeing

posted by luther70 at 11:26 AM on April 14

He's right about one thing. The wild card is just terrible. It's one of the most popular worst ideas ever.

posted by olelefthander at 11:48 AM on April 14

So far as the author's premise that even a mediocre team can get lucky and make the postseason, I agree with him, but only to a point. Trying to draw conclusions two weeks into the season makes no sense at all. It's a 162-game season. Granted, a loss in April counts as much as a loss in September, but the good teams will tend to prevail in the long run. The Yankees's hitting will carry them through a lot of poorly pitched starts. Boston's starting pitching will keep them in a lot of games until the hitters can tee it up against the opponent's relievers. If Baltimore (or Toronto, or even Tampa Bay) is to have any chance, there needs to be massive intervention by the baseball deities.

posted by Howard_T at 02:21 PM on April 14

There is two things wrong with the Bigs;the wild card AND the DH.As for the Orioles, I'm not a fan but I always thought they were a classy outfit.Its true, Angelo is a crummy owner. Actually,the only thing Baltimore really needs is for Earl Weaver to reincarnate.

posted by sickleguy at 02:53 PM on April 14

Angelos. Earl Weaver: still alive. Other than that, spot on. Except according to the fans who stay interested deeper in the season due to the wild card. Remember the Glory Days you're talking about were in a league with half as many teams. I think having excitement right here, now, in the moment trumps some theoretical purity of having just a pennant in each league. Otherwise, the purest league would be the one with no playoff series at all.

posted by yerfatma at 03:21 PM on April 14

There is two things wrong with the Bigs;the wild card AND the DH. You don't like the DH? Don't watch the American League. Otherwise, let those of us that enjoy skill watch an extra hitter in the lineup instead of watching the 8th batter get walked to see the 9th guy swing like an enfeebled monkey. As for the wild-card, I think you'll find your argument fall on deaf ears in towns like Miami, Boston, Anaheim, Detroit, Houston, San Francisco and New York (outside the Bronx). All of those cities got to experience a World Series because their team grabbed the wild-card spot. Actually,the only thing Baltimore really needs is for Earl Weaver to reincarnate. Earl Weaver would be VERY shocked to find out that he's dead.

posted by grum@work at 03:24 PM on April 14

As far as Angelos and Earl are concerned, I stand corrected and am properly abased. As far as the DH goes,I'm a lifetime Tigers fan and I can hope the DH will go away one day,can't I,Grum?

posted by sickleguy at 03:34 PM on April 14

I would like to point out that the 2004 and 2005 St Louis Cardinals had the best record in the Majors and they did'nt win the World Series;;;so how come an injury plauged Cardinal team in 2006 is undeserving?

posted by shudacudawuda at 08:21 PM on April 14

I would like to point out that the 2004 and 2005 St Louis Cardinals had the best record in the Majors and they did'nt win the World Series;;;so how come an injury plauged Cardinal team in 2006 is undeserving? That's not totally fair...I'd call them semi-deserving. Baseball is like capitalism. What you deserve matters not, what you earn is what you keep forever.

posted by vito90 at 01:57 AM on April 15

and the regular season is for deciding who gets a chance to decide who is to earn that championship. Do we really need 162 games for that?

posted by igottheblues at 03:20 AM on April 15

I'm a lifetime Tigers fan and I can hope the DH will go away one day,can't I,Grum? You can hope, but then replace Gary Sheffield in your batting lineup with Jeremy Bonderman, and let me know how exciting that is for you. Do we really need 162 games for that? Yes.

posted by grum@work at 11:22 AM on April 15

He's right about one thing. The wild card is just terrible. It's one of the most popular worst ideas ever. As for the wild-card, I think you'll find your argument fall on deaf ears in towns like Miami, Boston, Anaheim, Detroit, Houston, San Francisco and New York (outside the Bronx). Thanks grum, you saved me some typing. I think the main problem with baseball is that the season is way too long, and not enough teams have a chance to win. The NFL and the NBA do a good job of creating enough excitement to carry into the playoffs. People just fall asleep on baseball until the playoffs come around. 162 games in 200 days? Talk about over exposure.

posted by yay-yo at 12:00 PM on April 15

I personally like the long schedule of baseball. I guess it might be overexposure if you're not a fan of the game.

posted by jerseygirl at 12:13 PM on April 15

Gotta just love you Baseball "Purists", The wildcard in baseball has been mostly a positive thing in that it promotes interest deeper into the season for cities whose teams may have traditionally been out of contention. Every year (or mostly every year), there seems to be one club that jumps out and smokes the competition in its Division while the "Second" place club wins more games than almost all of the other traditional qualifiers. Another aspect to consider, your hometown club goes through a rough stretch due to injuries and is mathematically eliminated by the traditional means yet, having all their players back near the final third of the season, they surge to the second or third best record in the majors and are awarded by going home for the off-season (seems fair doesn't it?). Now for the DH,,,,It has literally extended the careers of players such as Hal McCrae or Paul Molitor, not to mention given younger fans the chance to see individuals like Hank Aaron on the field at least in some capacity, when they may have never gotten that chance. I for one, have enjoyed those scenarios much more than watching some pitcher strike out on a routine basis or watch the riveting “Double Switch”.

posted by R_A_Mason at 12:15 PM on April 15

The wild card keeps some interest (and media attention) towards baseball as the NFL season gets going. With the wild card round, baseball is cutting more into the NFL's time, but football doesn't seem too concerned by this threat. The Divisional playoff series has turned baseball's postseason into a nice compact tournament. I love it. After Seattle's thrilling victory over the Yankees in 1995 how could you not love it?

posted by Newbie Walker at 05:09 PM on April 15

I love the wild round. The team that endures to the end; is the team that deserves to win. If your season is 162 games; you need to try to show up of all 162 games. Any given day the better teams wins. If you feel you're playing a lesser team then beat them. Otherwise, lick your wounds and show up next season. Some teams take advantage of their opportunites and some don't. (Such is sports).

posted by fourthreeforty at 06:29 PM on April 15

Nothing wrong with being a purist except in today's game it won't work. Baseball is watered down just like the other sports. Too many teams and not enough really good players. It would seem that about 40% of the players today would not be considered good enough to play 20 years ago. Add in the fact that MLB has fooled around with the rules and balls. The wild card is in fact, great for baseball and the fans...So is intra league play during the season..It allows all the fans in both leagues to see at one time or another all the best players. Say what you will the pros and cons of the wild card format is multi-faced and will always remain so. You either like it or dislike it....

posted by ucla512 at 11:30 AM on April 17

Nothing wrong with being a purist except in today's game it won't work. Baseball is watered down just like the other sports. Too many teams and not enough really good players. Much better when it was all white kids from east of the Mississippi. The World Baseball Classic clearly showed the talent dilution.

posted by yerfatma at 12:24 PM on April 17

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