Did you notice that the Orioles are hot?
Not just based upon their 5 run bottom of the 9th win today capped by Wilson Betemit’s walk off 3 run jack.
But Buck Showalter is entering the month’s final game tied for first in the Division. The Orioles have a better record than the Yankees, the Red Sox, the Tigers, the Angels and many other teams that were expected to contend.
Adam Jones is off to a great start. Red Sox nemesis Nolan Reimold is hitting the ball well. Matt Weiters is driving in runs. And Tommy Hunter looked terrific today (I thought last year he was a good pick up for Baltimore.)
Jim Johnson has been spot on as a closer and while the Red Sox and Yankees try to piece together a rotation, Jason Hammel and Wei-Yin Chen join Hunter as solid starters so far. If Jake Arrieta and Brian Matusz can get their acts together, this would be a deep staff.
So who should get credit for this?
Of course not.
It’s the smiling bird hat.
This is their best start since 2008 when they won 16 games in April. And we all know how THAT season ended. (Actually I bet you didn’t. They were a .500 team in mid July but went 23-52 after the 4th of July to finish with 93 losses.)
But the feeling in Baltimore is good right now.
And that bird has reason to smile.