I did a season recap for the 2018 Baltimore Orioles back in October. I’m not about to re-hash that now. It the fact is that 2018 was unkind to the Orioles and their fans. And the logic behind all of it made no sense.
Somehow Buck Showalter became an incompetent manager in the eyes of some fans. Things got so bad that he wasn’t offered a new contract. That aside, Showalter expected (and rightfully so in a sense) that guys would somehow progress back to their career means. The likes of Davis, Mancini, and others – somehow their numbers at some point had to improve to where their career averages said they should be, right?
They never got there. This much we now know. However that’s why I say that logic was turned on it’s head this year. In contrast, it seemed that Oriole opponents did more and more things outside the box, or against logic. And somehow it worked. Essentially in perpetuity.
I never felt that effort was the issue for the Orioles. Somehow it was just the perfect storm of things working against them. And all they can do is hope on this New Year’s Eve that with the regime change, perhaps 2019 will be different.
And of course let us not forget the send off made by Orioles fans to Adam Jones on the last day of the season. That was a single moment where everything made sense, in a year where common sense turned sidewards. To a lesser degree that farewell was for Buck as well, however the sentiment for him was felt much more in print and on message boards than at the ballpark that day.
Buck and Adam were the faces of a rebirth of the Orioles. And while they’ll be sorely missed, their legacies will live on. The hope of course is that someone on the current roster will step up and take that mantle moving forward.