Orioles (Re)Rebirth and the Art of Believing.
I should preface this with 2 facts.
1) I am not a serious Orioles fan. I am a Pirates fan. But I live in Maryland, and have visited all their minor league affiliates (or at least the 5 important ones).
2) I am 15 years old, and although I do have what some consider a rich understanding of the games history, my historical insight is limited.
Perhaps those 2 facts make me the perfect person to write this. Maybe they make me the worst. I don’t care. All I know, is that going to Orioles Park at Camden Yards is fun again.
I went to a game right before the all star break, and the atmosphere was unlike any other time I’d went. People came early. People cheered during BP. People (finally) screamed “O!” during the national anthem. Heck, they even screamed it during O’ Canada. And this was all just pre-game.
Now’s a good time to Mention that Chris Davis is a monster. Every time he stepped up, you EXPECTED a homer. And it didn’t even seem that crazy to expect that. And you know what might be even crazier? He delivered. He crushed a baseball into the stands early in the game to give the Orioles the lead. And by the end of the game, fans where already asking him, heckling him, for another.
But not everything is great in the charm city. I overheard one fan say “Ya it’s fun, but I really don’t put my heart into the team. I’ve been burned too often.” A statement that one could argue rings true for a lot of O’s fans, and one I can relate to as a Pirates fan. It’s great to see the Orioles, and the Pirates, doing well, but fans of both teams are still too cautious to dive down deep and throw themselves into the teams. We’ve been burnt before. And as much as we want to believe, as much as we say we do believe, fans of both teams, are on edge. Waiting for the other shoe to drop.
Take my dad for example, someone I got back into baseball after a long hiatus. After 2 close losses, he went on a Facebook rant demanding the Pirates make a trade. Why? Because he thought he saw the other shoe slipping out of our hands. The Orioles fans I know are no different, and although they made the playoffs last season, they are still concerned.
Yes, the Orioles lost that day, but who cares? We might be on edge constantly, waiting for that other shoe, but it’s fun to be a fan again. Finally.