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With A Bang

Written by: Peter Coolbaugh

Start planning the parade folks. A 4-0 start. Last time that happened we went to the ALCS. The year was 1997 and I believed back then that I had a future. Oh how the times have changed in so, so many ways.

The 2011 Baltimore Orioles are now undefeated. A sweep of Tampa Bay and a home victory over the Tigers has us currently in first place. Scores of 4-1, 3-1, 5-1, and 5-1 thus far highlight the old Weaver approach of pitching, defense, and the 3-run homer. Not coincidentally the Earl of Baltimore threw out the first pitch yesterday.

The newly remodeled Camden Yards was met with enthusiastic responses from the crowd. New vendors, new food, new seats and new-look Orioles team seemed to signify something that has been missing for a long time. Not quite perfection, but getting close. The harmonious and euphoric experience that is Opening Day was never more evident than yesterday. Buck and his Birds were greeting by adoring fans who seemed to have waited all winter the yell "O!" during the national anthem and waited to clap their hands to the familiar John Denver tune.

Young Jake Arrieta got in some trouble early but escaped damage. The bullpen was again superior and B-Rob hit his second three run shot in 3 games, to give the Orioles the lead for good. Say what you want about the big boppers not producing yet; I must admit that this team is fun.

Every year, ever single fan brings his hopes and dreams to the home opener. Sometimes, our team is done by the end of April. The usual talk of the Orioles stinking is nowhere to be found this year. Being a doormat for the rest of the AL East is in the past. With a young and hungry team with new blood in the coaching boxes, the sky is the limit for these Orioles. The roll over and die approach went out the window with Buck Showalter's arrival.

The Weaver pitch to Showalter was a symbolic passing of the torch from the greatest manager in team history to the man who is most likely going to be the 2nd best. The time is now to undo the past decade and write a new script in the original Oriole Way.

Look out American League. The season is just getting started.


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