I've been waiting for so long; it never seemed to get any closer. Year after year, season after season, all we had to talk about was the farm system and "Oh, well when Wieters is here... when Manny makes it... When Bundy is atop the rotation...".
Out of nowhere, the 2012 Orioles came, saw, and conquered. I don't think I ever started a season with lower expectations, and I know many shared my feelings. Written off by almost all the sports media, I planned for another season of waiting.
All the way back to the GM search fiasco that has turned into a blessing. The talk of Buck wielding too much authority, the rejections, the scorn. With middling role players being the only additions to a roster full of holes, why expect anything different than the past years? Even our biggest signing of the offseason, Wada, got hurt before the season started.
This team has done the almost impossible. The rotation is unrecognizable from April, the lineup is full of rejects and has-beens, and the bullpen is... well, it's a bullpen.
They've defeated the stats, they've baffled the scouts, they've driven fans crazy. And through it all, there was Camden Chat. The season isn't over yet, and won't be until the O's are parading the streets of B-more with the trophy; but it has already been an amazing ride, one that no one here will forget. Even from half a world away, O's fandom has come together, been reignited, excited a city aching for meaningful baseball again. Baltimore was always a baseball town, but for the past few years, the O's have been an afterthought. Now they're finally back in the spotlight where they belong.
After a decade and a half of failure (for what is success in baseball but the playoffs?); we can all say that the team we love, the team we've agonized over, hated, shaken our heads at, maybe even given up on, has finally succeeded.
I apologize for the stream-of-conciousness babble, and thank you all for letting me ride along with you all season long. I couldn't have chosen a better place to do so.