It seems like only a few days ago that the
Oh, wait a minute, that really was only a few days ago, but the Orioles were trying to hold onto second place in the
So it begins again.
The Rays have proven over and over that they can compete with the big boys in the
The Rays took a big gamble when they traded top-flight starter
In all likelihood, today’s game will be a tight-fisted pitching duel between Price and Orioles ace
The Orioles came out of
Some of the preseason prognosticators are predicting that the Orioles fall back off the map this year after winning 93 games last season, which is certainly possible in a division where just about anybody could conceivably finish anywhere. But there are plenty of reasons to believe the Orioles can repeat last year's success or even improve on it.
Markakis missed a big chunk of last season, so a full year from him would add significantly to the Orioles' offensive production. Hammel was limited to only 20 starts by a knee injury, which leaves some real upside even though he pitched very well when he was available. Roberts and Reimold are wild cards, but there is little question that the Orioles start the season with a better top-to-bottom lineup than a year ago.
There is a lot that isn't knowable about the pitching staff, but Showalter and pitching coach Rick Adair came out of spring training with enough depth to hold the starting rotation together if one of last year's lions turns into a lamb.
It'll be tough to repeat some of the magical things that happened last year, which is why some people think they'll have trouble picking up where they left off last October.