Oh, yes, they did tease us with a few years of stellar baseball under the tutelage of their wizard of a manager, Buck Showalter. If not for his baseball acumen, the Orioles possibly would not have achieved the success they had in 2013 and 2014.
Part of the problem is that General Manager Dan Duquette has morphed into a scrap-heap dealer, finding has-beens and castoff players to plug a leaking dike. Sure, his ultra-conservative style worked in some instances, such as with acquiring Steve Pearce, a guy whose playing style would have made Cal Ripken Sr. smile.
But for every Steve Pearce, there seem to be three or four Travis Snyders. Mr. Duquette's GM style is a direct reflection his boss, the tight-fisted Peter G. Angelos. He seems to have become an albatross in the front office, especially after his off-season dalliance with the Toronto Blue Jays.
This off season looms as a very critical juncture for the O's, as four current players, Matt Weiters, Wei-Yin Chen, Darren O'Day and Chris Davis prepare to test the free agent market. Only a moron would think the organization could keep all four of these players. That is not going to happen.
But here's a scary hypothetical: What if the organization were to lose all four of these current valued players?
If that were to occur, you can bet the farm that the dike will most assuredly burst, and once again the Orioles will regress to accepting mediocrity as the norm — while in their hearts Orioles fans will know all the while that such a scenario could have been avoided.
Patrick R. Lynch, Nottingham