Everything in the sports world is coming up 1983 for Baltimore Orioles

1983 World Series - Philadelphia Phillies v Baltimore Orioles
1983 World Series - Philadelphia Phillies v Baltimore Orioles / Focus On Sport/GettyImages

What do the Baltimore Orioles, North Carolina State Wolfpack Men's Basketball team, and Pittsburgh Pirates have in common?

Aside from passionate fanbases, none of these teams have won a championship - or even played in a championship game - since 1983.

Let's flashback.

The date is April 4, 1983. The North Carolina State Wolfpack just completed an improbable NCAA Tournament run, knocking off Akeem Olajuwon (Olajuwon later added an "H" to the beginning of his first name), Clyde Drexler, and the heavily-favored Houston Cougars in the Championship game. A last-second basket by NC State's Lorenzo Charles lifted the Wolfpack - and their late, great coach Jimmy Valvano - to what NC State fans hoped would be the first of many NCAA Championships. Little did they know, they would not reach the Final Four again for another 41 years.

The date is April 8, 1983. Behind right-hander Jim Bibby, the Pittsburgh Pirates just completed a four-game sweep over the Houston Astros at the Astrodome, en route to a 5-0 record to start the season. Little did they know, they would not record another 5-0 start for another 41 years.

The date is October 16, 1983. Cal Ripken Jr. just caught a soft line drive off the bat of Philadelphia Phillies centerfielder Garry Maddox, and the Orioles are celebrating their third World Series victory in the last 17 years. Orioles fans hope for much more of the same, especially since Cal Ripken's glorious career was only just beginning. But the Orioles have not made it back to the World Series since. But 41 years have passed. Could this be their year?

Other success-starved teams are experiencing success like they have not seen since 1983. Could it be the Orioles' turn as well?

1. The North Carolina State Wolfpack

DJ Burns Jr.
NC State v Duke / Lance King/GettyImages

North Carolina State is not, and never has been, one of the flashier teams in Men's College Basketball, let alone the Atlantic Coast Conference in which they play. Leave the flash to Duke and North Carolina. But when it comes to grit, heart, and playing the underdog, leave that to NC State.

In 1983, NC State snuck into the NCAA Tournament after winning the ACC Championship, as its 17-10 regular season record likely would not have secured them an at-large bid. To everyone's surprise, this scrappy bunch defeated Pepperdine, UNLV, Utah, Virginia, Georgia, and Houston - most of whom were heavily favored - en route to an NCAA Championship.

Fast forward to 2024. On March 9, 2024, NC State closed out its ACC regular season schedule with its fourth stragiht loss, a road loss to Pittsburgh. At 17-14 overall and 9-11 in the ACC, NC State had virtually no shot to make the NCAA Torunament unless it won the ACC Tournament. And that is exactly what it did, sneaking in as a No. 11 seed and earning a first round date with Texas Tech.

While getting into the NCAA Tournament was a difficult task, advancing to the Final Four seemed near impossible. But behind leaders DJ Burns and DJ Horne, the Wolfpack found their 1983 magic and defeated No. 6 seed Texas Tech, No. 14 seed and Cinderella hopeful Oakland, No. 2 seed Marquette, and longtime rival Duke consecutively to reach their first Final Four since 1983. NC State faces another heavily favored foe - Zach Edey and Purdue - in the Final Four on Saturday.

2. The Pittsburgh Pirates

Ke'Bryan Hayes
Pittsburgh Pirates v Miami Marlins / Rich Storry/GettyImages

No, the 2024 Pittsburgh Pirates did not reach their first World Series since 1979 based on five games in April 2024. But after defeating the Washington Nationals 8-4 on Monday, the Pirates have come out of the gate at 5-0 for the first time since 1983. It's a good sign for a Pirates team that, aside from three straight NLCS losses in the early '90s, has not experienced much success over the last 41 years.

The Pirates open their home slate of games against the Orioles on Friday, April 5, 2024. The Orioles can only hope the Nationals do something to cool of the red-hot Buccos by then. After all, they've already made the only type of history Baltimore fans care about.

3. The Baltimore Orioles

Adley Rutschman, Gunnar Henderson, Brandon Hyde
Los Angeles Angels v Baltimore Orioles / Mitchell Layton/GettyImages

What does it mean that the NC Sate Wolfpack have reached their first Final Four, and the Pittsburgh Pirates have started 5-0, for the first time since 1983?

Probably very little, if anything.

But it could be a sign. A sign that three teams that have had very little to cheer about since 1983 could be in for something big in 2024.

It bears noting that the Orioles have not won a World Series - or even played in one - since 1983 as well. And at the start of the year, where pundits believe the Orioles have their best chance to reach the Fall Classic since 1983 ... well, the year 1983 just keeps coming up.

The baseball season is young, and at 3-1 after two wins over the Angels and one over the Royals, the Orioles are clearly not in World Series form yet. But it's April, when hope springs eternal for all baseball fans. So why not have some fun with some other sports coincidences centered around 1983 and hope that, just maybe, it all adds up to the Orioles' first World Championship since 1983?