1954: In the first season of the modern Orioles, the team is a success in the stands but a failure on the field. On the field the team manages to lose 100 games, while finishing in seventh Place. However, the team manages to draw over a million fans in 67 home games.
1955: The Orioles continue to struggling finishing in seventh place again with a record of 57-97.
1956: The Orioles show some signs of improvement as they finish in sixth place with an improved 69-85 record.
1957: The Orioles finished at .500 for the first time with a record of 76-76, while finishing in fifth Place. Veteran Connie Johnson led the charge of a surprising Orioles pitching staff that saw four pitchers throw shutouts on consecutive days in late June.
1958: The Orioles are unable to build off their .500 season finishing in sixth place with a disappointing record of 74-79.
1959: In a carbon copy of the previous season the Orioles finish in sixth place again with a record of 74-80.
1960: The Orioles made a charge for the pennant, before the New York Yankees over took them with a 15 game winning streak in September. However, finishing with an 89-65 record, it was clear that the future was bright with rookies Jim Gentile, Ron Hansen, and Steve Barber shining bright alongside more established players such as Milt Pappas and Brooks Robinson, who went to the first of his 16 All-Star Games.
1961: The Orioles eclipsed the 90-win mark for the first time finishing 95-67, but still finished 14 games behind the New York Yankees, in third Place. Jim Gentile had a stellar season and set 11 team records, while finishing third in the MVP vote behind Yankees stars Roger Maris and Mickey Mantle.
1962: The Orioles hit a bump in the road and take a step backwards in their development into a winner by finishing in seventh Place with a disappointing 77-85 record.
1963: The Orioles rebound nicely after their poor showing, to finish in fourth Place with a solid 86-76 record.
1964: As late as mid-September the Orioles were in first place in a tight pennant race with the New York Yankees and Chicago White Sox. However, the Yankees won 11 straight down the stretch to take the pennant by a game over Sox and two games over the Birds, who finished with an impressive 97-65 record. O’s 3B Brooks Robinson was named American League MVP hitting .317 with 194 hits, 28 home runs and 118 RBI.
1965: The Orioles are in the thick of the pennant race again, before finishing in third Place, eight games behind the first Place Minnesota Twins with a 94-68 record.
1966: In a trade with the Cincinnati Reds for Milt Pappas and two others, Frank Robinson came to the Birds and proved to be the missing ingredient for the Championship. Robinson ended up winning the American League MVP and Triple Crown. Frank Robinson, Brooks Robinson, and Boog Powell all drove in over 100 runs; along with a balanced pitching staff the Orioles finished with a 97-65 and cruised to their first American League Pennant. In the World Series the Orioles faced the powerful pitching of the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Orioles jumped out quickly with back-to-back home runs by Frank and Brooks Robinson in the top of the first inning of Game 1 that gave the Birds a quick three run lead. The O’s added a fourth run an inning later before the Dodgers attempted to come back with single runs in the second and third innings. However, by then Oriole reliever Moe Drabowsky had come on to pitch, and stopped the Dodgers on one hit the rest of the way, striking out 11. The Dodgers would not score again in the Series, as the Orioles claimed their first World Championship with a stunning four game sweep. Shutting the Dodgers out in the last three games was Jim Palmer who out-dueled Sandy Koufax in Game 2, while Wally Bunker, and Dave McNally, performed the shutout honors in Games 3 and 4.
1967: The Orioles coming off their World Championship, struggle all season tied for sixth place with a disappointing 76-85 record.
1968: The Orioles get off to a slow start again, as Manager Hank Bauer is fired, and replaced by Earl Weaver. Under Weaver the Orioles would make a late charge, before finishing 12 games out of first place in second with a solid 91-71 record.
1969: In Earl Weaver’s first full season at the helm, Jim Palmer’s dominance was on display as he fired off an 11-game win streak during the summer. Mike Cuellar also stared on the mound winning 23 games, en-route to sharing Cy Young honors with Detroit Tigers Denny McLain. Meanwhile Dave McNally also won 20 games, as the Orioles dominated the AL East, in the first year of divisional play, with a franchise best record of 109-53. In the first every ALCS the Orioles used lat inning rallies to sweep the Minnesota Twins in three straight games. Going into the World Series the Orioles were heavy favorites against the New York Mets who were not even supposed to be there. The Series got off to a promising start when Don Buford hit a leadoff homer, and the Orioles won Game 1, 4-1. However in Game 2, Jerry Koosman helped the Mets even the series heading to New York for the next 3 games shut down the Orioles. In Game 3 it was Centerfielder Tommie Agee who single handily did in the Birds leading off with a home run, and stealing at least five runs with his glove. In Game 4 fate took another strange twist as J.C. Martin laid down a bunt, O’s reliever Paul Richert’s throw then hit him allowing the winning run to score in the tenth inning. Down 3-1 the Orioles needed to win Game 5, and after taking a 3-0 lead looked well on their way to doing just that. However, fate dealt the O’s another blow in the sixth inning when Cleon Jones was hit on the foot with a pitch. Originally Jones was not awarded first, bust after Mets coach Yogi Berra showed that shoe polish was on the ball Jones was awarded first. Following was Donn Clendenon who hit a two run homer to bring the Mets back into the game. The Mets would tie the game an inning later, and eventually take the lead for good in the eighth inning with two runs. The stunned Orioles only left helpless too watch as Cleon Jones caught Dave Johnson’s pop up to win the Series, in perhaps the greatest upset in World Series history.
1970: The Orioles posted three 20-game winners, Dave McNally (24-9) and Mike Cuellar (24-8) leading the way, followed by Jim Palmer, whose 20-10, whose record included 5 shutouts. Boog Powell led the offense hitting 35 HR, and driving in 114 runs en-route to winning the AL MVP. The Orioles again cruised to the AL East title with a 108-54 record. Once again the Orioles swept the Minnesota Twins, in the ALCS on their way to the World Series. The World Series against the Cincinnati Reds ended up becoming the Brooks Robinson show. Robinson, who nailed the game winning home run in the seventh inning of Game 1 gave Red hitters nightmares with his un-worldly play at the 3B through-out the series. The Orioles came back from an early 4-0 deficit to win Game 2, and returned home up 2-0 in the series. Game 3, was won by Dave McNally on the mound and the plate when he hit a sixth inning Grand Slam. After blowing a late lead in Game 4, and trailing early in Game 5 the Birds put the finishing touches on their second World Championship by scoring nine unanswered runs, and winning the Series 4 games to 1.
1971: Not satisfied with their pitching brilliance in 1970, the Orioles outdid themselves by posting four 20-game winners. Pat Dobson joined McNally, Cuellar, and Palmer as the Birds went on to post a 101-61 record for their third straight American League Eastern Division title. Again the Orioles got to the World Series with an ALCS sweep, this time the victims were the Oakland Athletics. In the World Series for the third straight year, the Orioles would meet up with Roberto Clemente and the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Orioles got off to a fast start in the fall classic winning the first two games at Memorial Stadium by scores of 5-3, and 11-3. However, the Pirates would bounce back to win the next three games in Pittsburgh including Game 4 which was the first World Series Game ever played at night. The Orioles would bounce back to win Game 6 in 10 innings, but Roberto Clemente and the stellar pitching performance of Steve Blass in Game 7, proved too much to overcome, as the Orioles lost their second World Series in three years.
1972: The Orioles quest for a fourth Straight World Series Appearance ends with a thirrd Place 80-74 record, which left them five games behind the American League East Champion Detroit Tigers.
1973: The Orioles returned to the top of the Eastern Division, with a 97-65 record. In the ALCS the Orioles took on the Powerhouse Oakland Athletics, and through the first four games the series was tied 2-2. However in the deciding fifth game the Orioles were shut down by Catfish Hunter who led the A’s on to their second consecutive World Championship.
1974: The Orioles battled the New York Yankees all season for the division title, and finally pulled away to win their fifth division title in six years by sweeping a series against the Yankees at Shea Stadium to finish with a 91-71 record. In the ALCS the Orioles were confronted again by the Oakland Athletics, who were well on their way to their third straight World Championship. The Orioles did manage to win the first game but Oakland proved to be too powerful winning the next three games easily.
1975: The Orioles fall 4 and half games short in a battle with the Boston Red Sox for the American League East Title, settling for second Place with a 90-69 record.
1976: The Orioles acquire slugging OF Reggie Jackson in a trade with the Oakland Athletics. However, Reggie was not happy with Baltimore, and left for a Free Agency deal with New York Yankees, who beat out the 88-74 Orioles by ten and half games for the Eastern Division Title.
1977: Despite the loss of Reggie Jackson, the Orioles find themselves in the midst of a three team race for the Eastern Division all season. With Brooks Robinson retiring, the Orioles find a new slugger in Eddie Murray who wins the Rookie of the Year and becomes a fixture at 1B for the next 11 years. Murray slams 28 homers and 88 RBI, as the Orioles challenge the Boston Red Sox, and the New York Yankees until the final weekend of the season, before finishing tied for second with a 97-64 record.
1978: The Orioles are never really a factor in the race for the divisional title, despite a solid 90-71 record that lands them in fourth place, eight and half games behind a first place tie between the New York Yankees, and Boston Red Sox.
1979: Orioles Magic came to town, as the Birds always seemed to find a way to win 102 games, and the American League East Title. If it wasn’t a home run from someone you least expected it was a late-inning rally that willed the O’s to victory. Mike Flanagan took over as the ace of the staff going 23-9 with 16 complete games, five shutouts, and a 3.08 ERA on his way to the Cy Young Award. The Orioles found little challenge in the ALCS against the California Angels winning in four games, and scoring 26 runs in the 3-1 series triumph. The World Series ended up being a rematch of the 1971 series against the Pittsburgh Pirates, who were bolstered by the Disco hit “We Are Family”. The Orioles got off to a fast start scoring five runs in the first inning of Game 1. After losing Game 2, the series shifted to Pittsburgh, where the Orioles won Games 3 and 4, establishing a commanding 3-1 series lead. However, the Pirates pitching buckled down, as the Pirates led by veteran Willie Stargell came by to stun the Orioles taking the final three including two in Baltimore to win the series in seven games.
1980: The Orioles won 100 games behind the brilliant pitching of Scott McGregor (20-8) and Steve Stone (25-7), who went on to win the Cy Young, but finished three games behind the New York Yankees for the American League Eastern Division title.
1981: In a season interrupted by a 50-day strike the Orioles are a factor for the division title before and after the strike, but fail to finishing in first Place in either half of the split season posting a 59-46 overall record. In August, Cal Ripken Jr. the son of long time Orioles coach Cal Ripken makes his major league debut.
1982: In his first full season, Rookie of the Year Cal Ripken Jr. made his presence known early on, going 3-for-5 with a homer on Opening Day. Eddie Murray made a bid for the MVP award hitting .316 with 32 home runs and 110 RBI. On May 30th in the first game of a Memorial Day weekend Double Header Rookie Cal Ripken sits out. Little did anyone know at the time it would be the last game Ripken would miss for 16 years. He would go on to break Lou Gehrig’s “unbreakable” record of 2139 consecutive games. The Orioles had an up and down season but made a heroic final charge down the stretch that put them into a tie with Milwaukee Brewers on the final day of the regular season and it was a head-to-head match up. Unfortunately, AL MVP Robin Yount and the rest of the Brewers proved to be too much and the Birds finished one game back at 94-68. After the season Manager Earl Weaver announced his retirement 15 winning seasons at the helm.
1983: Joe Altobelli became the new manager and took over an Orioles team on a mission. The mission looked to be derailed early by several key injuries to players such as Jim Palmer, Mike Flanagan, Dan Ford, and Tippy Martinez, but the O’s stayed the path and won 98 games and division title, as Cal Ripken Jr. took home American League MVP honors. The Orioles faced the Chicago White Sox in the ALCS. After losing the first game, the Birds came back to shut down the White Sox offense and win the series in four games. In the World Series the Orioles faced their geographical rival Philadelphia Phillies. The Orioles dropped the Game 1, once again 2-1, and came back top sweep the rest of the series. After losing the opener at Memorial Stadium, Mike Boddicker yielded just three singles, as the Orioles won the second game 4-1. The Phillies scored first in Game 3, on leadoff home runs in the second and third innings by Gary Matthews and Joe Morgan. However, the Orioles finally got to veteran starter Steve Carlton in the 6th, and drove him out of the game by scoring three runs. The Orioles also would win Game 4 by a single run. Home runs by Series MVP Rick Dempsey and Eddie Murray (who hit two) accounted for four of the Orioles five runs in the final game, which was more than enough to support Scott McGregor’s five-hit shutout pitching giving the Orioles the third World Championship.
1984: The Orioles celebrate their 30th Anniversary, but are unable to defend their World Championship, finishes in fifth Place with an 85-77 record. Hall of Fame pitcher Jim Palmer who struggled with injuries would retire early in the season failing to win a single game.
1985: After a slow start the Oriole fire Manager Joe Atobelli and lure Earl Weaver out of retirement to replace him. However, the Orioles still finish in the middle of the pack with an 83-78 record that landed them in fourth place.
1986: The Orioles 18-year streak of winning seasons comes to an end with a last place 73-89 finish. Following the season Earl Weaver, would retire again.
1987: To replace Weaver, the Orioles hire Cal Ripken Sr. to manage the ball club. The Move fails to produce results and the falling Orioles lose 95 games. However, the season is highlighted by the debut of Billy Ripken, who would go on to play 2B right besides his brother Cal for the next several seasons.
1988: The Orioles hit rock bottom posting an awful 54-107 record. The Orioles were bad from the start losing their first 21 games, setting a Major League record for the most losses to start a season an for the longest losing streak in AL history. The start would se Cal Ripken Jr. fired just six games in the season as Oriole legend Frank Robinson was brought in to try and revive the team.
1989: The Orioles had new uniforms and a new attitude on display as the team improved by 32 games with an 87-75 record. Along the way the Oriole spent nearly three months of the season in first place, before losing the Division Title on the next-to-last day of the season following consecutive 1-run losses to the Toronto Blue Jays. The Orioles dramatic run, became known as the “Why Not?” season as Frank Robinson won the American League Manager of the Year for his role in leading this young group into a pennant chase.
1990: The Orioles came back to earth following their surprising run for the division Tttle, finishing with a 76-85 record that saw them finish in fifth Place.
1991: The final season for Orioles baseball on 33rd Street saw the Orioles struggle to finish in sixth Place with a 67-95 record. However, Cal Ripken Jr. had a career year, hitting .323 with 210 hits including 34 home runs, 144 RBI, 368 total bases, and only 46 strikeouts. He would go on to win the American League MVP, All-Star MVP, and Major League Player of the Year Awards. Mike Flanagan pitched the last inning of the last game ever at Memorial Stadium retiring the batters 1-2-3. After the game a magical ceremony that included over 100 Orioles Greats bid farewell to the stadium and transplanted home plate from Memorial Stadium to the new Stadium at Camden Yards to officially end one era and begin a new one.
1992: The dawn of a new era of Orioles baseball began as Camden Yards was introduced to the world, as the premiere ballpark in baseball. Despite many comments about how hitter-friendly the park was, the first three games played there were low-scoring shutouts with the Birds winning thwo of them. The Orioles would go to finish in third Place with a solid 89-73 record.
1993: In a streaky 85-77-season the Orioles, who hosted the All-Star Game finished in a tie for third Place.
1994: The Orioles were in second Place and well within contention for either the Wild Card, or Division Title when a strike ended the season pre-maturely on August 12th with a record of 63-49. The strike would also put Cal Ripken Jr’s consecutive games streak in jeopardy. At the start of the 1995 pre-season the player’s were still at the picket lines, and replacement player’s were used in Spring Games by every team except the Orioles, who’s owner Peter Angelos refused to use them. Had the season started with replacements Ripken’s streak now fully within reach of Lou Gehrig’s record 2,130 consecutive games would have ended. However a circuit judge declared an impasse allowing the players to comeback, and ending the strike just a few days before the season was originally set to begin. This would keep Ripken’s streak alive, set up him to break the record in early September.
1995: With many fans scorned by the strike Cal Ripken Jr’s pursuit of the Consecutive Games record became a way for baseball to get some positive press. On September 5th and 6th at Camden Yards against the California Angels, Cal Ripken Jr. became baseball’s all-time “Iron Man”, tying and breaking Lou Gehrig’s consecutive games played record of 2,130. In the two games Cal went a combined 5-for-9 and hitting home runs in each game. Ceremonies were held after the tying game and included a “roast” of Cal to congratulate him on his achievement, but the best celebration was to come during the record-breaking game. After the game was in the books as an official game, play was halted for over 20 minutes as Cal Ripken Jr. made a victory lap as the fans showed their appreciation for baseball’s new “Iron Man”. However, during the season the Orioles would not fair as well fading late in the season to finish in third Place with a disappointing 71-76 record.
1996: After a frustrating first half, which saw the team struggle to find their identity, the Birds made a charge and captured the American League Wild Card with an 88-74 record. The season was also highlighted by the return of Eddie Murray who hit his 500th HR at Camden Yards on the one year anniversary of Cal Ripken Jr. breaking Lou Gehrig’s record. In the Division Series against the Cleveland Indians, Roberto Alomar secured victory for the Orioles with his heroics on the field and at the plate, as the O’s stunned the Indians in four games. The Orioles moved on to face the New York Yankees in the ALCS. The Orioles lost Game 1 after a controversial homer by Derek Jeter that was aided by a fan who stuck his glove out over the fence to pull it in for a homer. The Orioles would bounce back behind the pitching of David Wells to send the series back to Camden Yards tied at one game apiece. However, home provided no comfort for the Orioles who lost all three games at Camden Yards to the Yanks, who advanced to the World Series in five games.
1997: The Orioles had a potent attack, led by Rafael Palmeiro, Roberto Alomar, and B.J. Surhoff, along with double digit wins from five Orioles pitchers to lead the propelled the Birds to lead the AL East from wire to wire, beating out the New York Yankees by two games with a 96-66 record. In the ALDS the Orioles dispatched the Seattle Mariners in 4 games beating Randy Johnson twice. Their dominance brought them to the ALCS for a rematch with the Cleveland Indians in the ALCS. The Orioles got off to a fast start winning Game 1 and leading Game 2 in the ninth Inning, before Reliever Armando Benitez surrendered a game-tying homer to Marquis Grissom. The Indians would go on to win the game in extra innings, and would go on to take the series in six games, as the O’s lost three heart breaking games in extra innings.
1998: In a disappointing season, which sees the Orioles fall out of the race early, Cal Ripken Jr’s streak makes news again on September 20th. After 2,632 consecutive games played the streak came to an end, as Ripken decides to take a game off. He decides to take off on the final Sunday Home game of the regular season so Orioles fans can tell their grandchildren they were there the night Cal Ripken Jr. sat out. The Orioles would go on to finish in fourth place with a record of 79-83.
1999: The Orioles make history by playing two games against the Cuban National Team. In the first game at the end of spring training the Orioles became the first American team to play in Cuba in 40 years, with a 3-2 win. The Cuban National team would return the favor beating the Orioles in an exhibition game at Camden Yards in May. In a season marked by pain, and personal loss Cal Ripken Jr. misses large chunks of the regular season with an injured back. The personal loss comes when his father passes away from lung cancer prior to the start of the season. The highlight of the season comes on June 13th in an interleague game in Atlanta where Ripken goes 6-for-6 in a rout over the Braves. However the injuries would prevent Ripken form reaching the 3,000 hit milestone leaving him just nine short heading into the next season. However, Ripken does manage to hit his 400th career home run, as the Orioles finish in 4th Place with a 78-84 record. The Orioles see another one of their players reach a career milestone when pitcher Jesse Orosco pitches in his MLB record 1,072nd game on August 17th.
2000: It does not take long for Cal Ripken to get his 3,000th hit, as he reaches the milestone on April 15th with a 7th inning single in Minnesota against the Twins. However the year is plagued with injury and frustration again as Ripken misses half of the season, and the Orioles finish with a 74-88 record.
2001: An otherwise forgettable 63-98 season is marked by the end of the Ripken era in Baltimore. After 20 seasons Cal Ripken Jr. decides to retire, and the season becomes a farewell tour for Cal. The farewell tour officially got started in the All-Star Game where Cal Ripken Jr. won the game’s MVP with a homer off Chan Ho Park. Ripken would have a habit of hitting homers in each of final series at a particular stadium. However, it was clear his best days were behind him as he struggled to hit .239. Prior to his final game on October 6th, Orioles, and baseball honored Ripken, as a new award was established in his honor awarding players who don’t miss a game with the Cal Ripken Jr. Award.
2002: In their first season without Cal Ripken Jr. the Orioles who were in the middle of a youth movement were playing well beyond expectations as they hovered around .500 most of the first 5 months holding a 63-63 record on August 23rd while starting pitcher Rodrigo Lopez with 14 wins and closer Jorge Julio with 31 saves were making serious runs at Rookie of the Year. However, suddenly and without warning the bottom would fall out. The Orioles would win just 1 of their next 19 games and 4 of their last 36 including a 12 game losing streak to close out the season with a 67-95 record to finish in furth place. Lopez would win just one game down the stretch while Julio did not post a save in any of the Orioles final four wins, costing either a shot at winning top rookie honors.
2003: The Orioles showed signs of improvement, as they played hard in every game with a league high 79 games decided by one or two runs. However playing in the same division as the New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox and Toronto Blue Jays the Orioles were quickly lost in the shuffle and on their way their way to a sixth straight season in fourth place. As they had in previous years the Orioles dealt away several players at the trade deadline getting themselves up for a dreadful final two months as they finished with a 71-91 record. Following the season the Orioles would fire Manager Mike Hargrove and would attempt to improve themselves through free agency signing Javier Lopez and Miguel Tejada, while bringing back former Orioles Rafael Palmeiro and Sidney Ponson who was traded to the San Francisco Giants at the trade deadline.
2004: In their first season under Manager Lee Mazzilli the Orioles offense was one of the strongest in the American League as they hit .281 as a team, as Miguel Tejada led the Majors with 150 RBI. However their pitching was a major weak spot particularly in the first half of the season as the Orioles suffered through an awful 8-19 June, falling out of the playoff race. With the hiring of Ray Miller as the team’s pitching coach the Orioles pitching was better in the second half posting a 3.01 ERA in September. However it would not help the Orioles finish above .500 as they finished in third place with a record of 78-84.
2005: As Spring Training was about to begin the Orioles added more punch to their already strong line up acquiring Sammy Sosa from the Chicago Cubs in trade for Jerry Harriston Jr. The trade would fizzle from the start as Sosa clearly past his prime, and perhaps hurt by the steroids ban only hit 14 home runs with 45 RBI and a terrible .221 average. Despite the lack of production from Sosa the Orioles got off to an excellent start as 2B Brian Roberts had a break out year hitting .358 with 11 homers through the first 2 months as the Orioles were in first place with a 31-20 record. Along the way Rafael Palmeiro received the recognition he deserved by collecting his 3,000th career hit to become just the fouth player in baseball history to have 3,000 hits and 500 home runs. While in the pen the Orioles were getting solid relief from B.J. Ryan who had a break out year with 36 saves. The Orioles continued to play well into June as they held a 42-28 record on June 21st. However, on the horizon laid storm clouds as things would fall apart quickly first Roberts suffered an injured elbow and was not quite the same the rest of the year, while the poor Orioles starting pitching began to catch up with them as they lost their grip on first place losing 12-of-17 games, heading into all star break. At the All-Star Game SS Miguel Tejada would capture MVP honors, and the Orioles came out strong winning their first two game after the break. However, those storm clouds rolled in and washed all the hope and optimism away as the Orioles went into a total free fall losing 16-of-their-next-18-games, along the way Rafael Palmeiro had his entire career forever tarnished as he became the first notable player to receive a steroids suspension. When three months earlier he seemed to had secured his Hall of Fame Plaque, now he’s found himself inducted into the Hall of Shame as fans everywhere turned against him, while he earned the scorn of teammates as while grasping for alibis seemed to implicate Tejada. With the team imploding the Orioles would fire Manager Lee Mazzilli and replace him with Sam Perlozo in August. Perlozo would not do much better as the Orioles who once stood atop a first Place perch sat in fourth place with a 74-88 record when the season was over. Making matters worse their breakout closer B.J. Ryan broke free and signed with the Toronto Blue Jays, while Shortstop Miguel Tejada sulked all winter and demanded a trade.
2006: The Orioles were unable to deal Miguel Tejada much to the star Shortstops chagrin as the Orioles were clearly a team rebuilding with youth. However, they did attempt to make some improvements with the acquisition of Kris Benson from the New York Mets for Jorge Julio and pitching prospect John Maine, while signing Kevin Millar of the Boston Red Sox. While Benson pitched well early posting a 9-5 record through the first two months he struggled the rest of the way and ended the season with a disappointing 11-12 record with a 4.82 ERA, while Millar batted a serviceable .272 with 15 home runs and 64 RBI. The unhappy Tejada was more then professional having a solid .330 average with 24 home runs and 100 RBI. However the Orioles were as bad as expected as they finished in fourth Place with a 72-90 record. However, there were some important bright spots as rookies like Nick Markakis who hit .291 with 16 home runs, and 62 RBI, and Adam Loewen who had a 6-6 record and showed some flashes of brilliance gave Orioles fans hope for better days ahead.
2007: The Orioles started the season down a man as Kris Benson was lost for the entire season, while Miguel Tejada continued to sulk on a Orioles team that going into the season was seen as having no chance against the World Class New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox. After posting a 27-27 record over the first two months, the Orioles plunged deeper in June, losing 13-of-15-games, including eight straight costing Manager Sam Perlozo his job on June 18th. Under replacement Dave Trembley the Orioles losing streak would hit nine, but the Orioles would soon turn things around, highlighted by a 15 strike out performance from Eric Bedard on July 7th as they posted a 12-5 record in the second half of July after the All-Star Break. With the Orioles playing more competitive baseball the team decided to give Trembley a contract extension on August 22nd, unfortunately that night in the first game of a twi-night double header against the Texas Rangers the Orioles would lose 30-3, in the biggest blowout in the history of the modern era. It would be the first loss of a nine game losing streak as the Orioles finished another season for the birds in fourth place with a record of 69-92.
2008: The Orioles began to focus on the future following their tenth straight losing season, as new General Manager Andy MacPhail traded their top pitcher Eric Bedard to the Seattle Mariners for outfielder Adam Jones, pitchers George Sherrill, Chris Tillman, Tony Butler and Kameron Mickolio, while shortstop Miguel Tejada was sent to the Houston Astros for outfielder Luke Scott, pitchers Matt Albers, Troy Patton, Dennis Sarfate and 3B Mike Costanzo. Despite the changes the Orioles spent most of the first half above or near .500. However, the Orioles struggled badly in the second half and sank to the bottom of the American League, posting an awful 5-20 record in September as they finished in last place for the first time in 20 years with a record of 68-93.
2009: The Orioles played strong baseball at the beginning of the season, taking four of their first five games against the New York Yankees and Tampa Bay Rays. However, it was a mere mirage as the Orioles would suffer a four game sweep at the hands of the Boston Red Sox on their first road trip, while being outscored 30-14. As May began the Orioles found themselves in last place again, as they continued to struggle against the rest of the American League East, especially the Boston Red Sox who the Orioles only beat twice in 18 games. The Orioles would end up spending all but two days the remainder of the season in last place as they ended up posting an awful 64-98 record. In such a bleak season it was hard to find a bright spot other than individual performances of two 23 year olds. Adam Jones, the Outfielder acquired in the Eric Bedard deal had a solid season, hitting 19 home runs, with 70 RBI, while Catcher Matt Wieters was called up in June and hit nine home runs, with 43 RBI with a solid .288 batting average.
2010: Hoping to improve their pitching staff, the Orioles acquired Kevin Millwood from the Texas Rangers in the off-season. Millwood started on opening day as the Orioles were beaten by the Tampa Bay Rays 4-3. While Millwood did not get the loss, his acquisition would not help the Orioles, as he was among the worst pitchers in baseball posting a record of 4-16, with a paltry 5.10 ERA. The Orioles month of April was in line with Millwood’s bad numbers, as they posted a 5-18 record. May would bring more losses as they repeated their 18 losses from April, while winning ten games. Deeply entrenched in last place, and in the midst of a ten game losing streak, the Orioles would fire Manager Dave Trembley on June 3rd, as they held a 15-39 record. Third Base Coach Juan Samuel would take over as the interim manager. Under Samuel the Orioles continued to play bad baseball as they posted records of 9-17 and 8-19 in June and July. On August 3rd the Orioles would begin a new era as Buck Showalter took over as Manager, while Samuel would become a scout. Showalter began making little changes right away removing a photo of Camden Yards near the team’s clubhouse because the scoreboard showed the Orioles trailing. An experienced winner, Showalter tried to instill more discipline to a team that had long languished at the bottom of the American League East. While, there would be no saving the Orioles season, and no escaping last place, the Orioles ended the season playing solid baseball over the final two months. Before Showalter the Orioles held a 32-73 record and were well on their way to 100 losses. After he became the manager of the Orioles, the birds were the best team in the American League over the final two months with a record of 34-23 as they ended the year with a 66-96 record.
2011: Coming off their strong finish with Buck Showalter at the helm, hope returned to Baltimore, as Showalter started his first full season as Manager of the Orioles. The Orioles would continued their momentum, as they swept the Tamp Bay Rays on the road, getting strong starting pitching from Jeremy Guthrie, Jeremy Arcado, and Zachary Britton. In their home opener, the Orioles continued their strong play as Jake Arrietta got the win as they beat the Detroit Tigers 5-1. After winning six of their first seven games, the Orioles hit a bump in the road, losing eight straight games. Part of the reason for the Orioles slump was games against the New York Yankees who beat the O’s in all four April meetings as the birds finished the first month with a record of 12-13. The Yankees would beat the Orioles twice more in May, as the Orioles up and down play continued as they struggled against winning teams, including two more losses to the Yankees. The Orioles would continue to strive towards .500 as they held a 30-31 record on June 10th. Over the next month the Orioles would go into a nose dive that all but ended any hope of a winning season, as they again found themselves in last place at the All Star Break with a record of 36-52. As July came to an end the Orioles finally ended their lost streak against the Yankees, winning 4-2 on July 29th at the Bronx. However, the Yankees ended up taking the next three games as the O’s ended July with a record of 42-63. The Orioles would eventually find themselves holding a 47-77 record as they went into another meaningless last six weeks of the season. However, as August ended the birds made a little run winning six straight on the way to ending the month at 54-80. While the Orioles looked uncompetitive against the Yankees, they gave the Boston Red Sox a tough time all season. If not for a four game sweep at Fenway Park just before the break the O’s may have won the season series. As the season entered its final week, the Orioles would see the Red Sox plenty, meaning they would play a role in deciding who would play in September. The Sox were on a sudden September skid that took them from a neck and neck battle with the Yankees to battling the Rays just for the Wild Card. During a four game series at Fenway, the Orioles frustrated the Red Sox, by taking three games, as the Rays who once trailed by nine and half game were right on the Sox tails. The Orioles would finish the season with the Red Sox in a three game series at Camden Yards. With a 6-3 win in the opener the Orioles helped the Rays earn a tie for the Wild Card. The Sox would bounce back to win the second game 8-7, as the two teams went into the final game tied. The Rays who were hosting the Yankees would fall behind 7-0 early, as the Red Sox held an early 2-0 lead. The O’s would later tie the game, but Boston would take a 3-2 lead to the ninth inning where they were a perfect 77-0 leading after eight inning. However, the Orioles would not quit as Chris Davis led off with a double. Nolan Reimold than followed with a ground rule double that scored Davis with the tying run, he was followed by Robert Andino who laced a single to left that would send Reimond with the winning run. The Orioles 4-3 win combined with the Rays 8-7 comeback win over the Yankees would eliminate the Red Sox. Though again finishing in last place with a 69-93 record the Orioles at least for one day felt like champs as they played the perfect role of spoiler to end the season with a feel good win.
2012: The Orioles began the 20th Anniversary season without high expectations as they had not had a winning season since 1997. Hoping for a change of luck, the Orioles went back to the smiling bird on their hats that they wore during their glory days. However, during the off-season the Orioles had made a number of small deals that would greatly improve their pitching staff. They would acquire Matt Lindstrom and Jason Hammel from the Colorado Rockies for Jeremy Guthrie, while Wei-Yin Chen was signed from the Japanese League. The Orioles got the season started on a positive note, as they swept the Minnesota Twins at Camden Yards. However, against the Yankees the O’s had their same old struggles, losing the next three games, including two games in extra innings. After a solid 6-4 road trip against the Toronto Blue Jays, Chicago White Sox and Los Angeles Angels, the Orioles began to show the signs that this season was going to be different as they swept the Blue Jays at Camden Yards, to finish April with a solid 14-9 record. The good news continued in May as the Orioles won the last two games of a three game series against the Yankees in the Bronx and went on to sweep the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park and found themselves sitting in first place for the rest of the month. Over the next two months the Orioles would just barely keep their heads above water as they combined to go 26-27 in June and July, as they fell ten games behind the first place Yankees. Despite their struggles, the Orioles would show an amazing ability to win the close game and games that went to extra innings. This was partly due to a strong bullpen led by Jim Johnson, who set a team record with 51 saves, which was best in the American League, earning Johnson the Reliefman Award and his first All-Star Game appearance. A strong pen was needed as Chen was the only starter to win more than ten games. Joining Johnson at the All-Star Game was Catcher Matt Wieters who had 23 home runs with 83 RBI and Adam Jones who had 32 homers and 85 RBI. Those expecting the Orioles to fold in the dog days of August would be in for a rude awaking, as the birds not only solidified their spot in the pennant race, they all but secured a winning record thanks to an 18-9 record. Helping to spark the Orioles August rejuvenation were two additions, one a veteran off the scrap heap the other a rookie prospect who should be in Baltimore for years to come. The veteran was Nate McLouth, who was released by the Pittsburgh Pirates and joined the Orioles in August and played a key role after Nick Markakis went on the Disabled List for a second time in September after fracturing his thumb. In 55 games with the birds McLouth got several key hits with seven home runs and 18 RBI. Meanwhile Machado made his Major League Debut at the age of 20 on August 9th and had two home runs in his second game, hitting seven homers with 26 RBI in 56 games. As August came to an end the Orioles took two games in a big three game series against the Yankees in the Bronx with Mark Reynolds having two multi home run games. The Orioles would battle the Yankees the rest of the season, staying within a game of first place. Helping to power the Orioles down the stretch was Chris Davis who had homers in six straight games, and led the birds for the season with 33 home runs and 85 RBI. While the Orioles would not win the division they would grab one of the American League’s two Wild Card spots with a record of 93-69. The Orioles, path to the Wild Card was aided by an amazing 29-9 record in one run games, while they won 16 straight games in extra innings after losing their first two against the Yankees in the first week of the season.
2012 Postseason: For the first time MLB had two Wild Card teams make the playoffs in each league, with a one game winner take all Wild Card game to start the playoffs. The Orioles would be in the game on the road against the Texas Rangers. The Orioles had lost the season series to the Rangers 5-2. However, Texas came into the game in a tailspin, and the Orioles would take full advantage winning the game 5-1, as Joe Saunders who was 0-6 with a 9.38 ERA in six career starts in Texas got the win. In the ALCS the Orioles would face the Yankees, losing the first game 7-2 after Jim Johnson allowed five runs in the ninth inning after coming into a tied game. The Orioles bounced back to win 3-2 in Game 2, as Wei-Yin Chen pitched around trouble all game, with Johnson rebounding for a 1-2-3 ninth to get the save. However, in Game 3 Jim Johnson would falter again allowing a pinch hit home run to Raul Ibanez to tie the game 2-2, after a masterful start by Miguel Gonzalez and home runs by rookies Ryan Flaherty and Manny Machado. The Yankees would win the game 3-2 in 12 innings, as Ibanez came up and hit a second home run off Brian Matusz. Game 4 would be another pitcher’s duel as starters Joe Saunders and Phil Hughes each allowed just one run as the game went into extra innings again. This time it would the Orioles who won the game 2-1 on a 13th inning double by J.J. Hardy. The series would go to a decisive fifth game, when Jason Hammel delivered a quality start but came up short as CC Sabathia went the distance in a 3-1 win for the Yankees. The Orioles best chance to win the game came in the eighth inning when the bases were loaded and Nate McLouth long drive down the right field line just went foul, missing the foul pole by inches. McLouth would end up striking out, as Sabathia ended the inning without further damage on a groundout from J.J. Hardy.
2013: Coming off their first winning season and first playoff appearance in 15 years, the Orioles hoped to build off the momentum and take another step forward. One thing which gave them hope was Manny Machado who impressed after being called up in the final two months of the playoff chase. Machado just 20 years old was already a fan favorite and key part of the O’s future. Early on it was Chris Davis who was sparking the Orioles offense, setting a record with 16 RBI in his first four games, as the birds won three of their first four games as they had a solid 16-11 record in April. Davis also became the fourth player in MLB history with homers in his first four games to start the season. It would be a breakout season for Chris Davis who already had a career high 34 home runs by the All-Star Break. Davis would go on to finish the season with 53 long balls setting a new franchise record, as he led the majors in home runs, and RBI with 138 as he finished third in MVP voting. While Davis was hitting homers, Manny Machado was developing into one of baseball’s premier gap hitters with a league high 51 doubles and 14 homers while batting .283. For most of the first three months, the Orioles were in the thick of the pennant race as they finished June with a record of 47-36. However, the Orioles would struggle in July as the Orioles lack of a reliable starting pitching began to take a toll. Chris Tillman would be the Orioles most reliable pitcher posting a record of 16-7, while Miguel Gonzalez finished 11-8 with an ERA of 3.78. However, no other pitcher won more than seven games. Jim Johnson had another big year, saving 50 games, but lost eight games out of the bullpen. The Orioles never took flight in the second half as they faded down the stretch and finished tied for the New York Yankees for third place with a record of 85-77. As the season came to an end the Orioles got even worse news as Manny Machado suffered a freak knee injury when he reached first base on a single during a September 23rd game on the road against the Tampa Bay Rays. Machado would undergo reconstructive knee surgery to prevent future dislocations of the knee.
2014: Much to fans chagrin the Baltimore Orioles had a quiet off-season. It was well known they were seeking a bat as Manny Machado was going to miss the start of the season. Fortune would smile upon the Orioles as their patience paid off when they signed Nelson Cruz to a one year contract at the start of Spring Training. Coming off a steroids suspension Cruz, had lingered unsigned despite being one of the premier All-Star sluggers in the American League. Cruz got off to a fast start, hitting 20 home runs with 51 RBI in the season’s first two months. Catcher Matt Weiters also got off to a fast start, hitting .338 with four homers and 15 RBI in April. However, Weiters would suffer a season ending elbow injury in May, when he was forced to undergo Tommy John surgery for a torn Ulnar Collateral Ligament. To replace Matt Weiters, the Orioles would acquire Nick Hundley from the San Diego Padres on May 24th. Manny Machado returned in May and was a little rusty, but began to regain his swing in June, hitting his first career Grand Slam. For the first two months the Orioles hovered near .500, but as June began they began to string together wins and started moving up in the standings. Steve Pearce who was released in April and re-signed a few days later was a big contributor in the Orioles June surge hitting .361 with .361 with five home runs and 13 RBI. The Orioles continued to play strong baseball in July as they moved into first place by splitting a double header against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park on July 5th. They would remain on top of the American League East for the rest of the season. The Orioles would post a record of 17-8 in July and finish with a game and half lead over the Toronto Blue Jays. Caleb Joseph was just of the Orioles powering the lineup as he homered in five straight games in August. J.J. Hardy also had a big August, with five homers and 18 RBI, while Chris Davis who struggled early found his grove with seven long balls, all while Nelson Cruz remained atop the AL Leader board, ending the season with 40 home runs. The Orioles would post a record of 19-9 in August expanding their division lead to nine games. Not all news was good news in August, as Manny Machado re-injured his knee on an awkward swing and needed season ending surgery. Late in August the Orioles got another boost to their lineup when they acquired Alejandro De Aza from the Chicago White Sox. In his five games with Baltimore De Aza hit two home runs, and batted .400. The Orioles would cruise to their first division title in 17 years, posting a record of 96-66, earning Buck Showalter Manager of the Year. However, as the season came to an end they would lose the services of Chris Davis, after he was hit with a 25 game suspension for using amphetamines. A suspension that carried into the postseason.
2014 Postseason: In the ALDS against the Detroit Tigers, the Orioles got off to a quick start as Nelson Cruz slammed a two run homer off Max Scherzer. After the Tigers battle back to even the score, Nick Markakis drove home a run to give the Orioles a 3-2 lead after two innings. J.J. Hardy would add a home run in the seventh inning, before the Orioles broke the game open with eight runs in the eighth inning for a 12-3 win. The eighth inning would also be magical for the Orioles in Game 2, as they rallied from a 6-3 deficit to win the game 7-6 thanks to Delmon Young’s bases clearing double. As the series shifted to Detroit, Bud Norris got a big start from Bud Norris who outdueled David Price for eight innings. Nelson Cruz provided the offense with a two run home run in the sixth inning. The Tigers finally broke through with back-to-back doubles from Victor Martinez and J.D. Martinez to start the ninth. However, Zach Britton settled down striking out Bryan Holaday. After Nick Castellanos was intentionally walked, Britton got Herman Perez to hit into a series ending double play as the Orioles completed the ALDS sweep with a 2-1 win. The Orioles would advance to the ALCS for the first time in 1997, as Buck Showalter finally won a postseasons series. Facing the Kansas City Royals in the ALCS, the Orioles got off to a shaky start, allowing four runs in the third inning. The O’s would battle back to tie the score Alejandro De Aza Baltimore chop in the sixth inning. The Royals however, would win the game in ten innings 8-6 as Darren O’Day surrendered homers to Alex Gordon and Mike Moustakas. O’Day would also take the loss in Game 2, as he surrendered a go ahead double to Alcides Escobar in the ninth inning as the Royals won the game 4-2. As the series shifted to Kansas City, the Orioles continued to be frustrated by Lorenzo Cain, who continued a series of spectacular catches robbing several extra base hits, as the Royals won 2-1 to take a 3-0 series lead. The Royals would go on to complete the sweep with another 2-1 win as the Royals bullpen continued to shut down the Orioles lineup.
2015: After reaching the ALCS and winning the Eastern Division for the first time in 18 years the Baltimore Orioles suffered heavy losses on the free agency market, as Alexi Andrew Miller, Kelly Johnson, Nelson Cruz, Joe Saunders, Nick Markakis, and Nick Hundley signed elsewhere. The biggest loss was no doubt Nelson Cruz who given a one-year contract led the American League in home runs in 2014. Despite the loss of Cruz, the Orioles were not lacking for power as Chris Davis led the majors in home runs with 47, with 117 RBI. It was the second time in three seasons that Davis led the American League in home runs becoming the first player on the Orioles to have to 40-home run seasons. The Orioles also got a big power season from Manny Machado who was fully healthy and played in every game, hitting 35 home runs with 86 RBI and a .286 average. As the Orioles threaded water in April posting a record of 10-10, riots made national headlines in Baltimore after Freddy Gray died from injuries suffered after being taken into police custody. Games against the Chicago White Sox on April 27th and 28th were postponed as the city underwent a curfew. The series finale would be played, but the game would not be open to the public, making in the first game in Major League history to be played in front of no fans. The O’s would beat the White Sox 8-2 in an empty Camden Yards that took on a surreal feeling as the shutter of cameras were audible to anyone watching the game on television. After struggling through most of May, the Orioles had their finniest month in June, winning 18 games as they entered July in a flat footed tie with the New York Yankees. Pitching throughout the season was inconsistent for the Orioles, as Wei-Yin Chen was their most reliable starter posting a record of 11-8, with an ERA of 3.34. The rest of the rotation hovered near .500, with Bud Norris being the biggest disappointment posting a 2-9 record with a gaudy ERA of 7.06 before being released at the end of July. Unable to make a big trade at the deadline, the Orioles threaded water the final two months, finishing right at .500 with a record of 81-81, good enough for third place in the American League Eastern Division.
2016: After missing the playoffs the Baltimore Orioles looked to rebound, one player that gave them an early boost was Mark Trumbo, who was acquired in a trade with the Seattle Mariners. Trumbo got off to a fast start as he batted .400, with five home runs, and had 11 RBI in his first ten games. The Orioles would start just as fast, winning their first seven games as they spent all of April in first place, finishing the month with a record of 14-9. May would not come as easy for the O’s as they struggled most of the month, posting a record of 14-13, but June would see the birds surge again, as they went 19-9 and reclaimed first in the American League East. Driving the Orioles surge was a powerful lineup, that set the record for the most home runs in the month of June with 56. The Orioles were in first place at the All-Star Break, holding a record of 51-36 as five players Brad Brach, Zach Britton, Manny Machado, Mark Trumbo and Matt Wieters were selected to represent the American League in San Diego. Despite struggling through much of July and August, the Orioles were a three-way battle with the Boston Red Sox and Toronto Blue Jays for first in the American League. Once again, the Orioles made history in August, tying a MLB record for 55 home runs, becoming the first team ever to hit 55 home runs in two different months in the same season. The Orioles would finish strong, though it was not enough to catch the Red Sox, they would finish with a record of 89-73 to earn one of two Wild Card spots in the American League. Mark Trumbo would finish the season with 47 home runs most in all of baseball. It marked the fourth straight season that a member of the Orioles led the American League in home runs, tying a record, making it more impressive is that three different Orioles accomplished the feat. Besides his 47 homers, Trumbo had 108 RBI. In addition to Mark Trumbo’s power, the Orioles got big seasons from Chris Davis who had 38 homers and 84 RBI, while Manny Machado had 37 homers and 96 RBI. On the mound, Chris Tillman led the way with a 16-6 record, with a 3.77 ERA, while out of the pen Zach Britton was nearly untouchable saving a league leading 47 games, with an ERA of 0.54 on the way to winning the Mariano Rivera Award as the top reliever in the American League.
2016 Wild Card Game: The Baltimore Orioles would face the division rival Toronto Blue Jays, who also finished with a record of 89-73. The game would be played at Rogers Centre as the Blue Jays won the season series 10-9. Chris Tillman got the start, but did not make it through the fifth inning, as the game was tied 2-2 at the end of five innings. Neither team would be able to score over the next four innings, as the game went into extra innings. After neither team was able to score in the tenth, Brian Duensing retired his only batter in the 11th. Buck Showalter sensing a marathon brought on Ubaldo Jimenez, who in a word was terrible as he gave up hits on three of his five pitches, the last being a three-run walk off home run by Edwin Encarnacion that gave Toronto a 5-2 win.
2017: After a heartbreaking loss in the Wild Card Game, the Baltimore Orioles looked for a rebound. Things looked good for the Birds early in the season, as they won seven of their first nine and spent most of April in first place, on the way to posting a record of 15-8. The next two months would see the Orioles start to slip in the American League East as the posted identical record of 12-16 in May and June. Baltimore’s struggles continued into July as they dropped below .500 and went into the All-Star Break with a record of 42-46. The Orioles made a minor run at the Wild Card, with a strong August as they got back over .500 with a late seven-game winning streak. However, before fans could get too excited, the Orioles suffered through a terrible September, winning just seven games as they slid all the way down the Eastern Division standings and finished in last place with a record of 75-87. The Orioles got a breakout season from Jonathan Schoop who hit .293 with 32 home runs and 105 RBI. Manny Machado had a team-high 33 home runs, with 95 RBI, while Adam Jones and Chris Davis each had 26 longballs, while Trey Mancini hit 24. Pitching though was a problem for the Orioles, as Dylan Bundy proved to be the only reliable starter with a record of 13-9 with a 4.24. The Orioles rotation suffered without Chris Tillman who struggled all season with a shoulder injury and posted a record of 1-7 with an ugly ERA of 7.84.