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The Hangover, the Aftermath: Where Does Everything Go?

I can’t say I intended to take a Loss Column hiatus after the conclusion of the Orioles‘ season. It more or less just happened. I think that, subconsciously, I needed some time to sit with the madness and bliss that was Orioles 2012.

I know for sure that I had no designs on a wrap-up post. I thought about it for maybe a minute before deeming the exercise pointless. As is the case with my overall approach, I cede ground like that to folks who do it better. Nothing I could have said would offer any value beyond the combination of what you already know anyway and what other blogs were/are saying.

So I just kind of took a few weeks off. No strategy, just a break.

This season was a catharsis for me as it was, I suspect, for many of you. We waited so long, and through so many tough years, that it felt otherworldly. Joyous but also hard to process. Real, but…unreal. That sounds odd but I think you know what I mean.

It’s over now. We’re firmly into the start of the Hot Stove season (hello, ridiculous trade) and I think we’ve had sufficient time to let 2012 be 2012. It’s in the books, and the books are closed.

Now what?

First and foremost (and in keeping with the season) I think we need to take a moment to say thanks. To the Orioles, to Buck Showalter, to Adam Jones et al, and most of all to the Baseball Gods. They gave us something special and we must resolve to always remember it. The biggest mistake we could make would be letting this season become retroactively tainted by anything that came before it or anything that might come next. 2012 in Birdland was amazing. Let’s carry that.

The next thing we need to do is start getting stoked about 2013, which means Hot Stove from now until February-ish. I’m fascinated by the questions of how Dan Duquette will approach both tweaking the Major League roster and whether or not he will be able to duplicate the last offseason’s successes. It’s safe to say we’ll view this Hot Stove with a very different lens from the one we used last year. It’s exciting.

As for The Loss Column, the next few months around here will be a mixed bag. I plan to write on roughly the same two-or-so-posts-per-week schedule that I settled into during the season but I don’t know exactly what I’ll be writing about. Some Ravens for sure but I don’t plan to necessarily cover them game-by-game. Some other sports will no doubt sneak in. I also plan to revive my plan to do more lifestyle/culture posts. Now seems a good time.

So, I hope you stick around. I really don’t have any idea of how many folks read this site these days — especially in the offseason — but, if you’re there, let’s have some fun.

And, thanks.

6 comments to The Hangover, the Aftermath: Where Does Everything Go?

  • danfan

    I still can’t believe Dan Duquette didn’t get The Sporting News’ 2012 MLB Executive of the Year. He should have won hands down and I’ve got 10 reasons why. Check it out here (http://bit.ly/T4VaPP)then be sure to vote for Dan for MLB’s 2012 Gibby for Executive of the Year at http://atmlb.com/ZXU49I! Go, Dan!

  • Miles

    It’s taken me a while to get over the way this season ended. I’m ready to re-live it a bit. But it was hard when it was over.

    Don’t get me wrong. I’m hugely appreciative of the ride. Massively, wildly appreciative. It was like 1989, except instead of being seven years old and quietly listening to Jon Miller and Joe Angel surreptitiously in bed because, you know, I was seven. I dragged my wife, my friends, pretty much anyone I could find to every game I could get to. I wound up going to 26 regular-season games this year and both home post-season games. It was my baseball binge, fifteen years of pent-up baseball aggression being released as almost everything that Buck and The Duke did worked.

    We got to watch Adam Jones blossom into a star, and see evidence that as much as Peter Angelos is a greedy old man who will probably wind up sitting next to his sworn rival John Paterakis somewhere in the third layer of a toasty part of the afterlife, he will still break out the checkbook when he (or the people he trusts) thinks the time is right.

    We saw Chris Tillman finally realize his potential. We saw Nick Markakis turn into a leadoff hitter. Jim Johnson had one of the finest seasons a closer has ever recorded. We saw Miguel Gonzalez honor the memory of Nick Adenhart as he turned into a stone-cold road warrior. We Chris Davis strike out an all-star and Silver Slugger in the 17th inning. Jason Hammel become the pitcher Tampa thought they were drafting. Wei-Yin Chen outpitch fellow NPB ex-pat Yu Darvish for most of the summer. The debuts of Manny Machado and Dylan Bundy.

    And, for the first time since the 90s, reason for straight-up hope. Not orange-tinted optimism for the next opening day. Machado’s already here. Bundy’s almost ready. Avery, Hoes, Schoop and Gausmann are right around the corner.

    Real hope.

    Yet, I can’t shake the way it ended.

    Damn Yankees.

    In 1988, when my mom took me to my first Orioles game, I told her I wanted to make a sign. She suggested (in honor of the truly awful season the Orioles were languishing through) “Anybody But The Yankees”.

    Now, this was the late ’80s, and no one mistook the Yankees for contenders, and I thought it was a curious suggestion.

    Starting in 1996, I would understand.

    So, here, we have the finest Oriole season, the most unexpected Oriole season in a generation, and for weeks it’s spoiled for me by the way it ended.

    Damn Yankees.

    The bitterness lingers, but I’m able to appreciate it more and look back with fondness without cringing about Raul f**king Ibanez.

    (cringe)

    Oh, well, there it was. But I digress.

    Damn, that was fun. Right up until the very end. After years of saying “let’s just get to .500,” we’ll enter next season thinking the year’s a disappointment if we don’t win the division or make it to the ALCS.

    My goodness, what a leap.

    Go O’s!

  • Big Ben's Motorcycle

    good post miles. no ravens/steelers thread? to what has this world come?

  • dan the man

    Great little synopsis of the craziest Orioles season ever. Nice one, Miles.

    We saw Chris Tillman finally realize his potential. We saw Nick Markakis turn into a leadoff hitter. Jim Johnson had one of the finest seasons a closer has ever recorded. We saw Miguel Gonzalez honor the memory of Nick Adenhart as he turned into a stone-cold road warrior. We Chris Davis strike out an all-star and Silver Slugger in the 17th inning. Jason Hammel become the pitcher Tampa thought they were drafting. Wei-Yin Chen outpitch fellow NPB ex-pat Yu Darvish for most of the summer. The debuts of Manny Machado and Dylan Bundy.

    It had to be the Yankees, of course, but when we think back about the 2012 season, it won’t be about what didn’t happen. It’ll always be about all the amazing things that did happen when no one saw it coming.

    Duquette Part Deux will be interesting. Was it all dumb luck? Is he kind of a genius? He sure seemed to make all of the other GMs kind of butt-hurt considering he didn’t get a damn single vote.

  • Big Ben's Motorcycle

    i like the andino trade. kinda want to see what flaherty can do with more at bats (assuming anything the o’s get out of roberts is a bonus).

  • dan the man

    So that Ray Rice run was maybe the most ridiculous conversion on 4th down that I’ve seen.