A lot of things were different in 2012 for the Orioles and their fans. On a personal level, 2012 saw Paul and I attend the most games we have ever been to over the course of a season. The totals:
- 75 home games (45–30 record, .667 winning percentage)
It’s almost scary to think we missed just six home games, but that’s the truth. And two of them were at the beginning of August, the middle two of four against Seattle, which we decided to sit out as to not burn out during the dog days of August. We also missed the last three of four against Cleveland at the end of June because of vacation and a Monday game in June against the Yankees due to a work commitment from me.
I missed 4 innings of the August 10th home game against Kansas City and Paul missed the September 15 afternoon game against the Rays for work (at this point, potentially missing work for playoff games was much more important then attending the third game of a series in which the O’s had already won). (1) (2)
Together, we both attended three of the four (I went to all four) 12:35 Wednesday/Thursday get-a-way games, which isn’t always easy.
It wasn’t our best winning percentage for home games, as that came in 2009 as we went 23–9, posting a .741 winning percentage).
As we will talk about in our Texas Road Report (to be published on the site in the next week), we aren’t fans of the Orioles primarily for the wins, but they do help.
- 3 away games (3–0, 1.000 winning percentage)
We went to the first two games against the Nationals in DC in May, watching Nick blast a second deck home run in the 11th to take game one and then watching Jason Hammel and the bullpen fend off the Nationals in a 6–5 win on Saturday Night. Away game three was the Wild Card Game in Texas and we all know how that went.
- 2 home playoff games (1–1, .500 winning percentage)
- Total Record: 49–31 for a .633 winning percentage
(1) This is not to say that we saw EVERY single other inning of the games we attended. When you attend so many games over the course of a season, you know when to hedge your bets and get out of there when the odds are heavily stacked against an Orioles comeback. There are a couple of clear example of this in 2012:
a.) Sunday, May 13 vs. Tampa. We bailed in the 7th and the O’s made a late rally but were held off by the Rays, who had lost the first two games of the series
b.) Friday, June 9 vs. Philadelphia. Arguably Jake Arrietta’s worst Major League outing, the O’s fell behind 7–0 early and we left in the third inning as any enjoyment from the surroundings of OPACY was quickly removed by the obnoxious Phillies fans.
The basic philosophy of staying for games is that if the O’s are within 3 runs, we aren’t leaving. Playoff games don’t count - you stay for EVERY inning regardless of the score. And the theory is, if we do leave but the O’s come back, we couldn’t be happier. But there are just times when you need to play the odds and an extra 30 minutes of sleep before work is worth more than staying for a 6–1 loss on a Tuesday Night.
(2) Our only huge miscue was June 9, 2009, when we left the O’s vs. Red Sox game in the 4th inning, right before a rain delay started. Boston was winning 7–1 at that point and rather than waiting out a rain delay with the annoying Red Sox fans, we went home to get packed for vacation the next day. The O’s made the biggest comeback in franchise history that night, winning the game 11–10. No one’s perfect.