Saturday, September 20, 2014

Last Regular Season Game of the Year

OPACY September 19, 2014
A trip to the Orioles Park at Camden Yards (OPACY) to attend my final scheduled game of the season is usually filled with sadness as the realization that autumn has arrived and the baseball season is coming to a close hits me with the reality of a baseball bat swatting a grand slam over the fence. Walking to the stadium in the waning light of day as the rays grew long and cast a golden hue across the land the scene was almost surreal. 

But, even though the Orioles lost last night AND it was my last home game of the regular season--I was excited because I know that this year there will be post-season baseball. 

As the MLB American League East Division Champions, there will be October baseball. Hopes abound for a World Series crown--but being a fan for one of the ten teams which will be in the post-season and only one of eight teams which will be playing October baseball makes it all that much more fun. 

It has been a long campaign from Spring Training in Sarasota, Florida, and after 153 regular season games of the 162 game season, only four teams in all of baseball have punched their tickets to the post-season and only three of those have clinched their division. With nine games to play there are still six invitations to the post-season outstanding! 
Having some fun with a hat I should have bought

For their part, the Orioles have a chance to end the season with the best record in all of baseball and assure themselves of home field advantage throughout the playoffs. But first things first, they need to secure home field advantage for the first round of the playoffs by winning three more of the nine games remaining. Those can be combined with Detroit losses to help--but they need to win three more games than the Angels to secure home field for the playoffs. It is complicated--but in a good way. The Orioles are not fighting for a spot, not they are battling for a better seed in the playoffs.

It is magical for diehard Orioles baseball fans like myself. It was grand being at the stadium last night not worried about how the team that shall remain nameless from up north was doing--it doesn't matter anymore. 

The fireworks display after the game was a medley of music and explosions and at one point they played Orioles Magic followed by We Won't Stop--the Orioles theme songs. 

Here comes the post-season--are you ready for Orioles from Birdland? Be afraid, be very afraid! The World Series is in sight!

-- Bob Doan, Elkridge, MD

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