Connolly's Bar: Is Orioles' slide a blip or flop?

Well, the Orioles have one more road trip before the first half ends – three games in Seattle and four in Los Angeles. And if the Orioles win one more game, they'll guarantee a winning first half for the first time since 2005.

And you are supposed to be happy with that. Thrilled, really.
Because this team was not expected to be sniffing .500 at the All-Star Break. It has completely exceeded expectations.


But winning early has a strange effect on fans – and the media, too, probably. Now that the Orioles have struggled some, it's natural, after 14 seasons of losing, to expect the worst.

The Orioles have lost nine of 12 and are 0-1 in July after going 13-13 in June, 15-13 in May and 14-9 in April. See a pattern?

The players, however, aren't panicking. I asked infielder Robert Andino after Sunday's loss if he thought these Orioles were as good as they looked early on. And even with all the injuries and cracks in the rotation, he said, "Absolutely. Without a doubt. … We've just got to find a way to get through this. We've got to find a way to get the momentum going again. Once we get that momentum back, we'll be fine."

Ask the players and they say this is just a blip, a bad stretch in a promising season that will be promising once again. Ask some cynical media members and they'll say this is likely the beginning of the same-old; that there are just too many holes for the Orioles to stay in a postseason race.

What says you?

Daily Think Special: Is this recent rough stretch for the Orioles a blip in a good year or the beginning of a second-half flop? Give me your reason why.

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