For Orioles fans, the feeling of optimism at the All-Star Break is an unfamiliar one.
For all too long, it seems that by the time mid-season rolled around the Orioles were in dead last with no sign of hope.
This year though, that's not the case. Despite a rough stretch where the Orioles lost 13 of their last 19 games, Baltimore still sits in second place in the AL East with a 45-40 record. And for the first time in a while, people are talking about buying players instead of selling as the trade deadline approaches.
On Friday, The Baltimore Sun reported that the Orioles are “going hard” after Brewers pitcher and 2008 American League Cy Young winner Zack Grienke.
Pasadena Patch blogger and local Orioles expert Wally Booth weighed in with his opinions on who he thinks the Orioles should go after in his .
“I just do not want to give up too much for Greinke if we cannot sign him to an extension,” Booth wrote. “I would personally like to see the O's go after [Matt] Garza and [Alfonso] Soriano from the Cubs. I think that is a more realistic deal and could also help the O's for the next couple seasons. Soriano and Garza could return to the American League East."
As a baseball fan, as well as a passionate Orioles fan, I would love to see them go after Grienke. Now I must confess, I have been a huge Grienke fan for years, even before he won the Cy Young. He was on the cover Sports Illustrated when I was a sophomore in college and I still have the issue.
I even have a T-shirt jersey with his name on the back from when he played for the Royals.
Who follows the Royals? Me.
I was obsessed. I went to see him pitch at Camden Yards twice. So you can imagine my excitement when I heard the Orioles were pursuing one of my favorites.
Whether the Orioles get Greinke or not is yet to be seen. Booth is right that they would have to give up a lot for him. Is it worth it? I’m not sure. But I’d be sitting in the front row of his first start wearing a Royals T-shirt if he came to Baltimore.
No matter if it is Greinke, or Garza or someone else, it is exciting that the Orioles are making moves for someone big, instead of getting rid of all the player who didn’t pan out.
One thing is certain: The Orioles need to get an ace, because I don’t think Orioles fans are ready to surrender the optimism for this season just yet. Whether they make the playoffs or not will be seen with time but an ace on the mound, full of hope and potential, couldn’t hurt.
So I will keep hoping for Grienke, after all, this season is full of hope—a misplaced feeling I’m sure Orioles fans could get used to having back.
What do you think are the Orioles chances for the second half of the season? Do you think they should go after Greinke? Tell us in the comments.