2013 BALTIMORE ORIOLES PREVIEW
The Baltimore Orioles are coming off their best season in 15 years and as they get healthy many wonder if they can’t replicate the 93-win season of 2012. A win over the Texas Rangers in the first ever one-game wild card playoff pitted the O’s against the Yankees in the ALDS. They hung tough but eventually fell to the Yankees in Game 5. They didn’t make too many moves in the offseason but manager Buck Showalter is confident in what he has.
The O’s will contend with, seemingly, all four other teams in the AL East for the division crown. The Yankees are always in the hunt, and Tampa wasn’t far behind last season with 90 wins. Toronto had a disappointing year but added pretty much every good player Miami had to their lineup with a blockbuster move this winter. The Red Sox were awful last year but a slight retool could see them back in the fray in 2013.
Batimore will look to Adam Jones and Chris Davis to continue knocking the ball around Camden Yard in 2013 after the two combined for 65 home runs last season. Nick Markakis and Matt Weiters have also proven to be rock solid with the Orioles and should continue to be mainstays for the club. While the O’s didn’t hit for much average last campaign, they did five starters hit over 20 home runs so the power is definitely available for Showalter.
Pitching is more of an enigma in Baltimore as only one starter had over 150 innings in 2012. Chris Tillman looks like the real deal after registering a 2.93 ERA over 15 starts and Wei-Yin Chen is looking like a good buy after his rookie MLB season. The rest of the rotation is somewhat a mystery, and the O’s bullpen that was so good in 2012 will be looked upon often this season.
PROMOTIONS AND GIVEAWAYS AT THE BALLPARK
April 5 vs. Twins: 2013 Schedule and Car Magnet
April 17 vs. Rays: MLB Drawstring Bag
May 29 vs. Nationals: Orioles T-Shirt
June 14 vs. Red Sox: Fireworks after the game!
June 16 vs. Red Sox: Travel Kit
June 27 vs. Indians: Beach Towel
July 9 vs. Rangers: Orioles T-Shirt
July 12 vs. Blue Jays: 1983 World Champs Hat & Fireworks after the game!
July 13 vs. Blue Jays: Adam Jones Replica Away Jersey
July 14 vs. Blue Jays: Orioles BP Cap
July 21 vs. Rays: Orioles License Plate Frame
July 23 vs. A’s: Fireworks after the game!
Sept. 29 vs. Red Sox: Fans’ choice bobblehead
BALTIMORE ORIOLES INFORMATION:
Location: Baltimore, Maryland
Stadium: Oriole Park
Conference: American League
Division: Eastern Division
Rivals: St. Louis Cardinals
Notable Players: Cal Ripken Jr., Frank Robinson, Jim Palmer
Baltimore Orioles World Series Title: 3, Last World Series Title: 1983
Baltimore Orioles AL Championships: 7, Last AL Championship: 1983
The Baltimore Orioles are the darlings of the city's professional sports scene, but today's franchise is actually the second incarnation of the team. The Orioles began play in the early 1890s and won their first professional championship in 1894. However, the team began to suffer financial losses and decided to uproot and move to New York to become the Highlanders - who would later become the Orioles' biggest rival, the Yankees. The modern day version of the Orioles started in 1954 and began to slowly build a contending roster to dethrone the high-powered Yankees teams of the '50s.
The Orioles gradually showed signs of improvement in the late '50s and were in the thick of the pennant race as the new decade dawned. By the mid-1960s, the Orioles had put together a dominant pitching staff of future Hall of Famer Jim Palmer and Robin Roberts as well as a fearsome batting lineup. In 1966, the Orioles acquired outfielder Frank Robinson, who would win the Triple Crown and the American League MVP. Along with Brooks Robinson and Boog Powell, the trio drove in 100 runs and cruised to a World Series matchup with the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Orioles surprised the baseball world by sweeping the Dodgers in four games and capturing their first title.
In 1970, the Orioles boasted an even more fearsome pitching staff as Dave McNally and Mike Cuellar each posted 20 wins during the regular season. The Orioles would end up beating the Cincinnati Reds in five games and had the look of a dynasty in the making. However, Orioles fans would have to wait until 1983 to win their next title. This time, it was the Orioles' bats that kept them going, as AL MVP Cal Ripken Jr., Rick Dempsey and Eddie Murray carried the team over the Philadelphia Phillies.
Orioles' fans have been witnesses to many great moments in baseball history, such as Cal Ripken Jr.'s epic consecutive games streak or their dominant teams in the 1970s. Though they play in the tough American League East, the Orioles have steadily built up their farm system in recent years to compete with the massive payrolls of the Yankees and Boston Red Sox. Best of all, fans can watch their team in the beautiful confines of Orioles Park at Camden Yards, which is widely considered one of the most picturesque ballparks in all of baseball.
Baltimore Orioles Playoff Tickets
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