During the third inning at almost every home game this season, Hershey Park has sponsored a bit where fans act like they are in the new SkyRush rollercoaster, with a random fan being picked out of the crowd for free tickets to the attraction. It is very appropro that this sponsorship started with the 2012 season, one that has been a literal rollercoaster of up’s and down’s, all coming down to the final series of the year.
While the Orioles have clinched a playoff spot for at least a wild card game, everything else is up in the air. At 3:20 am on Tuesday, October 2 as I write this, the Wild Card position is a tie between the O’s and A’s, with the A’s holding the tiebreaker for home field advantage. The Texas Rangers once again fail to put away the A’s and are in jeopardy of losing the division, which might be poetic for their recent play. But that could also move the dangerous Rangers into the second Wild Card position and make the O’s road to the Division Series even tougher.
The Rays and Angels have been eliminated from the playoffs. The Yankees get to play two more against an absolutely pathetic Boston Red Sox team, something I say without hesitation as their Monday Night line up was top to bottom worse than a lot of the poor line up’s the Orioles put out in the mid 2000’s. The Washington Nationals celebrate an NL East clinch by losing 2–0 to the Phillies because the Braves lost. The Detroit Tigers don’t have to worry about anything until Saturday, despite having a record that would put them in fourth place in the AL East.
Yet for the the O’s, their amazing 2012 run wasn’t even able to be celebrated on field with the fans on Sunday and who knows how the next two days will play out.
We all know baseball isn’t always fair; we certainly all know that life isn’t always fair. But the thing to remember through all of this is that this team, the one most “experts” said wouldn’t finish with more than 70 wins has the odds and manned their way through the first 160 games like no other Orioles team since the 1997 season. And I fully expect that regardless of the outcome, this team will give everything they have to do what they can to control the last two days of the regular season. We can only control certain things in life and must let the rest play out or risk going mad with anxiety and worry.
Fuck the bad luck, fuck the schedule, fuck the hot runs by teams who waited until it was too late to make their bid for the playoffs. The O’s can still make a lot of history and I’ll be with them all the way.