Yearning for baseball, and fearing that watching the MLB Network 24/7 might make my cable box freeze, I actually ventured around the dial a couple of evenings this week. Of course, after watching 32 reruns of "Law and Order: SVU", I again went searching - and settled on MASN. It caught my eye for good reason. As I flipped through, I saw a young Eddie Murray, mutton chops and all, standing at the plate facing Al Holland in the 1983 World Series. I was not touching the dial! Those were the days. Cal with hair! Dipper behind the plate. Eddie, Rich Dauer, and Todd Cruz in the infield. Disco Dan Ford in RF (with an occasional Jim Dwyer sighting), the Bee - Al Bumbry in CF, and of course, the two-headed monster in LF - John Lowenstein and Gary Roenicke. That got me to thinking about a lot of things. Does that really sound like a championship caliber line-up? Of course, Cal and Eddie were stars then, and both have busts in Canton now. But, offensively, the rest of that team is not exactly the 1927 Yankees. A rotation of Jim Palmer, Storm Davis, Scott McGregor and Mike Boddicker certainly was above average, though not dominant (but after scoring only 9 runs in the series, the Phillies may contest that ‘not dominant' thing.) Where was I going with this, besides on a stroll down memory lane?
Oh yea - the current Orioles. Guess one of the points is, for all the statisticians and sabermetric gurus out there, the reality is that any team can be greater or lesser than the sum of its parts. See the 2012 Orioles as the poster child for the former. Chemistry, defense, good baseball sense, strong leadership, timely hitting and pitching, and of course, some old fashioned luck can overcome other deficiencies that manifest themselves boldly in the ERA, batting average, and homerun columns that everyone hyper focuses on (don't even get me started on OPS!). But, even with all of those ‘little things' in large quantity - you still have got to get sufficient production out of the players to be competitive. The 2012 team did that, just like the 1983 team. When I look at parallels between this 2013 version of the Orioles and our last World Series team - I am immediately drawn to left field. Can Nolan Reimold and Nate McLouth become the 2013 version of Lowenstein and Roenicke? Channeling my 1989 memories - "Why Not?"
Reimold/McLouth - Roenicke/Lowenstein II?
Camden Chat | Feb 25