A Baltimore Orioles Sweep Would Be Tiggerific!


Oct 2, 2014; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Orioles shortstop J.J. Hardy (2) celebrates with third baseman Ryan Flaherty (3) after hitting a home run during the seventh inning in game one of the 2014 American League divisional series against the Detroit Tigers at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

Winning championships has been a difficult prospect for the Baltimore Orioles. The last time they won an American League Divisional Series (1997), few of us carried a cell phone or could imagine such a device for the common man. The last time the Orioles won a World Series, none of us alive then had even a gigantic desktop personal computer.

The Baltimore Orioles are one win away from a series championship. It could even be a sweep.

As I have written a few times here in the past couple of weeks, I remember the 1966 World Series – recalling it almost play by play; I was so into it as an 11-year-old. I attended the fourth and final game at Memorial Stadium, as my father and I took a charter bus to game – boarding in far western Baltimore.

Riding into the city and then north to the stadium, there were several billboards that had popped up overnight saying, “WOULD YOU BELIEVE FOUR STRAIGHT?” The city was entirely energized with Orioles fever.

And it is happening again. The city is lit up! And would you believe three straight over the Tigers?

Some folks say that baseball is no longer America’s game … that it is dying and losing fans to football, and even soccer. There probably is nothing quite like NFL fervor, yet everywhere in these baseball playoffs the stadiums are filled with screaming and singing fans. Baseball looks pretty healthy. (Though something does need to be done to speed up the games. Like never before in my 59 years, pro football games seem to fly by quickly in comparison.)

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Game 3 in Detroit

It will be the uber-competitive Bud Norris who goes to the mound for the Orioles to seek to lead them to a series sweep. Of course the Birds are facing their third consecutive Cy Young winner in David Price. Though he formerly was very powerfully effective over the O’s historically, in the last couple of years his performances against Baltimore have been somewhat mediocre.

The lineup that will come out this afternoon for the 3:45 game will likely have two changes. My guess is that Nick Hundley will be catching. And Delmon Young will almost certainly be in the game as the DH with Nelson Cruz going to left field. Young is 5-for-16 over his career against Price, with a double and home run.

Other O‘s with positive numbers against Price include Steve Pearce (4-for-12 with a home run), J.J. Hardy (12-for-36 with five doubles), and Nelson Cruz (10-for-28 with a double and three home runs).

Adam Jones is a more pedestrian 11-for-44 with three doubles, and Nick Markakis is 12-for-47 with a double and triple.

Ryan Flaherty has never faced Price, but I would expect that Showalter will retain him for defensive purposes in what should be expected as a close game.

Hoping to see you on the other side with reflections on a sweep! Hoo hoo hoo hoooooo!