As the season begins, one fan like myself would have to think, how are these Orioles ever going to match up with the rest of the league?
So far it's undecided what the rotation will be and there are only two days to go before Opening Day.
From a player's standpoint it's understood, yes, if we don't stay focused we could pay a big price; but then if we stick to our principles and play as a team, we have a chance.
Well that is where the Orioles are right now. If they dont stay together and play together, they could get killed and it could be very embarrassing. Nobody wants to go through that. Its been that way for way too long. Right now they have something they haven't had in a while: "a better philosophy."
It sounds too simple, but it's the catalyst that can change things around here for a long time.
It starts with Gregg Zaun and his ability to do the little things that make the difference--giving the pitchers a suggestion to make the right choice; how to pitch hitters when the game is on the line; how to establish a pitcher's strength early in game; how to control the tempo of the game; communicating; keeping the defense on their toes; thinking two hitters ahead of the game. That's the first step in the right direction.
If you had another couple hours, I could point out situations in years past where, had we had a better philosophy, we would be far advanced from where we are now.
Example: If I see us call another fastball middle-in with a 2-0 count and give the opposition a chance to go yard or hit an easy double , I'll go through the TV and strangle someone. Ha ha--(My sister would kill me), but that's how we have beat ourselves in the past.
What you will see though is much better called games. The catcher won't be running to the backstop two and three times a game with the winning run on base. You'll actually see someone who can block a ball. You'll see the best in baseball at blocking the plate, and you'll see the kind of effort that defined this organization for years.
It's a new beginning with an old theory: "TEAMWORK"
See you at the Yard!