Let’s not do this to ourselves, O’s fans. Not again. 

I’ve already started to see stories that the “Orioles are still in the race for a wildcard playoff seed.” I’m here to tell you, I’m not buying.

Teammates greet Baltimore Orioles’ Manny Machado (13) as he approaches home plate after hitting a game-winning grand slam in the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels in Baltimore, Friday, Aug. 18, 2017. Baltimore won 9-7. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

I refuse to get my hopes up again this year, as I did two years ago when they were flailing amid inconsistent play during the entire 2015 season. 

Baltimore finished 81-81 that year, good enough for third place in the American League East and a seat on the couch to watch the playoffs. It’s the same third place they’re currently occupying in the standings this season, and where I’m certain they’ll end up—at best—when it’s over. 

But in 2015, I was full of hope that Baltimore could go on a run to get into the playoffs. I just knew they could win out in September and ride a hot streak into the playoffs in October. But instead they played inconsistent baseball, as usual, and won 14 games against 13 losses during the month. 

As in 2015, the Orioles have been loitering around .500 most of this season, and .500 isn’t going to get them into the playoffs. They own a 60-63 record as of Aug. 20. 

Some would argue that Baltimore finished the season out strong last year, when they won 17 of 29 games after Sept. 1. That helped the Orioles sneak into the final Wild Card spot in last year’s postseason. But Baltimore won a ton of games early last season and enjoyed months with a record well above .500, which allowed them to cruise down the final stretch of the season. The Orioles will have no room for error this time around. 

With only 41 games remaining on the schedule, Baltimore needs every win they can get to steal a Wild Card berth. It won’t be easy as 36 of those 41 games will be played against AL playoff contenders. 

The odds are too stacked for me to ignore logic. I know this team. They’ll win some games, maybe five or six in a row, and then they’ll lose seven straight the very next week. That’s what I expect to happen. 

 

Perry Green

AFRO Sports Editor