Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Road Warriors?

The Orioles did it again.... they mounted another come-from-behind victory yesterday and won their fifth straight to sweep the Mariners in four games.

They are off to their best start at 5-1 since 2000.

No comes the real test: Playing on the road.

In the past, the Orioles have been absolutely dreadful when it came to playing away from the friendly confines of Camden Yards. In 2007 they were 34-47 on the road. In 2006, 30-51.

Now that they are playing well, and given fans reason for hope, playing on the road will offer us a good look at whether this hot start is just another flash in the pan.

Not that Camden Yards is exactly a safe haven, with dwindling attendance and mediocre records at home he last two seasons, but the road has always been a different story for the Orioles.

Today they begin a 3-game series against the Rangers, who are playing their home opener today at 2 p.m. EST. Then the birds travel to Tampa to take on the Rays for three more before returning home to host the Blue Jays (2), White Sox (2) and Yankees (3).

The Rangers and Rays are slated to be two of the lesser teams in the AL, albeit somewhat improved, but if the O's are as good as their 5-1 record, they should be able to pad their record against these teams before returning home to face some better competition.

So, the question remains. Even though the O's are rebuilding, and expectations have been lowered, they've played well and could be better than we thought.

They'll have their chance to prove us wrong yet again, on the road.

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