Thanks O’s, We Are Glad We Came
For 15 years Orioles fans have wanted more, we have wanted competitive, meaningful baseball. We have wanted to not be the laughing stock of baseball and the butt of every sports joke, but most of all we wanted our team back. We wanted to be able to embrace our players and have them embrace us back. We wanted a franchise that did things the right way – the Oriole way! Few people expected the franchise would deliver those things in 2012. Fortunately, we we’re all wrong as this has been one of most magical seasons in the history of this illustrious franchise.
This season has produced a lot of wins on the field and a playoff appearance. But most of all it has produced a rebirth, a rebirth for the love of baseball and a rebirth of fans embracing the players. For the first time in over a decade and a half, the team wasn’t about Peter Angelos. It is about Buck Showalter, it is about Adam Jones, it is about Matt Wieters, and most of all it is about these players embracing the history and the fans of this great city and the return of passion for the Orange and Black.
For years I heard stories about Brooks Robinson, Eddie Murray and the glory days of Orioles baseball. I watched as the stadium responsible for these great memories was vacated and as a new baseball shrine was built. During the first five years of Camden Yards there were sellout crowds and winning baseball; Baltimore was viewed as one of the best baseball towns in the country. For the next 14 years and 14 losing seasons, the crowds were scarce, the players could not wait to leave the city and the franchise seemed to do everything wrong, especially when it came to fans’ relations. Turn to April 2012 and many expected another season of disappointment and another year of disconnect between the fans and franchise. Now in October, the previous 14 years are an afterthought.
In their recent video of “Glad You Came,” Buck Showalter and several Orioles players voiced their thanks to the fans for coming out and showing their support this season. The video was just about 80 seconds long, but that was all it took. Instead of making the fans mad and not a priority like they had done for every year since 1997, they showed appreciation.
So as a lifelong Orioles fan, let me return the thanks. Thanks to the front office for bridging the gap between great players of the past to the team today. Thanks to Buck Showalter for being the exact opposite of Bobby Valentine. But most of all, thanks to every player who put on an Orioles uniform this season.
Regardless of how late in October the Orioles play, thanks for an amazing season and the return of Orioles Magic.
It’s been an absolute pleasure to watch.
We sure are glad we came!!