Optimism abounds on the Baltimore/Washington Parkway as the Baltimore Orioles and Washington Nationals begin spring training. The Orioles and Nationals are good and both teams look forward to making a run for their respective league pennants.
The Orioles surprised everyone, including their fans, in 2012, by winning 93 games and making it to the American League playoffs for the first time since 1997. Baltimore defeated the defending AL champion Texas Rangers in the first ever league wildcard game and advanced to the divisional round. There, they played the rival New York Yankees tough before losing the best of five series, 3-2.
The Nationals were no less surprising as they won 98 games and the National League East pennant. Washington advanced to the league championship series and on the same day that the Orioles were eliminated dropped a decisive game five to the St. Louis Cardinals. In the span of seven hours, dreams of a Baltimore vs. Washington World Series were smashed.
This season, the Orioles and Nationals expect to make another run at the post season. Both teams are young and talented. The Orioles boast a budding superstar in outfielder Adam Jones while Washington has one as well in 202 1NLof the Year Bryce Harper. If Baltimore pitching phenom Dylan Bundy joins the team this season he may create the same excitement that Nationals ace Stephen Strasburg has since joining Washington in 2010. The Orioles are managed by veteran Buck Showalter while the Nationals have Davey Johnson on their side.
The Baltimore/Washington region has never had this much optimism from both teams going into a season. The Orioles have not been good for 15 years while Washington had gone 33 years without a team before the Nationals arrived in 2005. Now both organizations are talking about winning the pennant and playing in the World Series, maybe against one another.
The 2013 baseball season is expected to be an exciting one for Baltimore and Washington fans as both cities have something to look forward to for the first time in years.