From the start I was hoping, as most of us were, that the Orioles would be able to keep up the good play they put on the field in the first eight games.
Realistically, I knew it wasn't going to be so easy. But some things have happened that really have showed that we are going in the right direction.
I can't say enough about Adam Jones and how fast he is becoming one of the most feared hitters in the game.
Nick Markakis is just a pillar of consistency, and I just think he is heading to the Hall if he is able to stay healthy along the way.
So far I'm impressed with Nolan Reimold and what he seems to be bringing to the table.
Brad Bergesen is the real deal and although it may not seem like he is worth all the hype, for me he is exceptional. You might not be able to see it right now, but I do and I can tell you there are not that many players who have what this kid has or who are capable of doing the things we'll see in the future from him. He will someday soon be one of the best in the game, and I'll stand behind that.
Meanwhile, it is so important that while we are beginning to put product on the field, we can't lose sight of the fact that they need good leadership.
Learning to play the game the right way is the difference between a Championship team and a challenger. We as a team cannot allow this season to slip away into oblivion with shabby play. Too much is at stake.
We have an exceptional third baseman in Melvin Mora, one of the best - if not the best - lead-off hitters in the game, a very strong 1B in Huff, a good shortstop, and an impact catcher in Zaun.
Yes, I know our weakness in supposed to be in our starting staff, and the numbers are there to prove it. Try to see it this way:
With one pitch at a time, we won 6 of our first 8 games; one hitter at a time we played great defense. Patiently, one at bat at a time we picked apart the Yankees and CC Sabathia, Wang and company, and sent Tampa Bay home hurting.
It can happen every game if we stay focused on job at hand.
One thing's for sure: we cant keep making the same mistakes we have in the past. We need to be a good example to the younger players who are beggining to show up.
Be disciplined in your actions, be prepared in your approach and be conscious of the impact you have with your work ethic, and things will work out.