Baltimore Orioles: How poor can the AL East really be?


Let’s just say up front here that the season isn’t over for the Baltimore Orioles – or anyone else for that matter. There’s still a lot of baseball to be played, and come September it’ll be baseball within the division at that. That means that the teams will effectively beat up on one another so to speak. We’ll also see the same in other divisions.

Courtesy of Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

However one of the big narratives in the first half of the season was that the AL East was a poor division this season. And at the time, there was really nothing that could be said or done that would dissuade anyone from thinking that. Heck, we even heard that going back to last year. I had a lot of comments on Birds Watcher and on twitter to the effect that the O’s were the best team in a very poor division. Granted they ran away with that poor division – but that of course took away from people’s points.

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  • But if you look at the standings this morning, by virtue of the Orioles’ win and Anaheim’s loss last night, the O’s are now in the second wild card soot. So that means that if the season were to end today (which again folks, it’s not yet remotely over), New York would win the AL East and the O’s would have to travel to Toronto to play in the AL Wild Card game – yes, as the visitor.

    If that scenario ended up being the final result, I think a lot of fans would just assume that the season was over since Toronto’s such a tough place for the Orioles to play. Maybe it would be over, but maybe not as well – that’s the fun in an automatic elimination game. However that’s not my point here this morning; is it not lost on people that the two wild card teams as of the moment this article is being written are AL East teams?

    Basically, there would be three AL East teams going to the playoffs if the season ended today. Unless of course that ends up being the final result, nobody’s going to look back and mention that on August 17th this was the case. However the point is that I think it’s worth mentioning that a lot of people misjudged this division. When you have five teams in the division and three of them are in the push for the playoffs, if anything they might be the creme de la creme of the league – not the dregs.

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    I’m not sure it’s fair to call the AL East the best division in the game either, but my point is that it isn’t a pushover division like the national media wanted to play up earlier in the year. We were led to believe that the Orioles were only the champions of the east last year because someone had to win it, and that this year’s champion would be in the same boat. Again bear in mind that these teams will be playing each other a lot in September. That will truly decide who goes to the post season and who stays home. But needless to say, the AL East is better than they were being given credit for being.

    Next: Baltimore Orioles: Is Toronto really that good?

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