Baseball used to be a marathon and not a sprint.
What does it become when 162 games are reduced to 60?
The number still seems too large for a sprint, but it’s no longer apt to make comparisons to a marathon. Maybe it’s become the 1500-metre run.
Kip Keino, Jim Ryun and Sebastian Coe could throw out the ceremonial first pitches. That should cover one home series for the Orioles.
The Orioles would be exactly halfway through their schedule without postponements. Eighty-one games in the books while enjoying their off day.
Instead, they’re still waiting to play their opener that was supposed to be held on March 26 at Camden Yards.
“It’s going to be interesting, it’s going to be different. I don’t know if it’s going to be good or bad. We’ll just have to wait and see. I think we just have to make the best out of the cards we’re dealt here. This is where we’re at right now, 60 games, so we’re going to get what we can in and try to play competitive baseball and see where the dust settles at the end of the year.
“I think we’re going to have to wait and see how it goes before you can make a call. There’s examples both ways, where teams that were really good through their first 60 games ended up winning the World Series, and then look at the Nationals last year.”
Yes, look at them. Stuck at 19-31 through 50 games and counted out before rising from the dead to hoist the trophy.
“They don’t even make the playoffs if it’s this year,” Bleier said. “But with that being said, everybody knows it’s just a 60-game season, so you better not start slow. You better come ready to play.
“As far as I’m concerned it’s an even playing field. Everybody’s playing the same amount of games. It’s not like we’re playing 60 and they’re playing 160. At the end of the day we’re going to play 60, hopefully, if everything goes well, and then there will be the playoffs from there. So it definitely could be interesting.
“Obviously, it’s going to be different. I just hope we make it as good as it can be so it’s worth the watch.”
The Orioles could be set up for a lightning-fast rebuild. From holding the second overall pick in the First-Year Player Draft to making the playoffs.
“You just never really know,” Bleier said.
“If they had the expanded playoffs, half the league makes it. You don’t even have to finish .500. That’s like the NBA. Teams finish below .500 and make the playoffs. They slide in as the eighth seed. It really doesn’t take much to get to the playoffs when half the league is in.”
Reminds me of the old joke about the NHL. They play 82 games to eliminate Hartford and Winnipeg.
I warned you that it was an old joke.
The schedule might not be announced until July, with the Orioles playing 40 games in their division and 20 against the National League East. The designated hitter will be used in both leagues. Rosters are unfrozen on Friday.