Despite a 6-1 loss to Boston on Sunday afternoon, the Orioles completed their best regular season since 1979 and gained a better idea of which team they’ll face in the American League Division Series beginning next Saturday.
As manager Brandon Hyde hoped following Thursday’s win over the Red Sox to clinch the AL East division title, Baltimore escaped the remainder of the weekend without any injuries and will now await the winner of the AL Wild Card Series between Tampa Bay and Texas that begins Tuesday. The Orioles finished 8-5 against the Rays in the regular season — which included the pivotal four-game split at Camden Yards in mid-September — and went 3-3 against the Rangers with that season series concluding in late May.
How the postseason roster and starting rotation will look remains to be seen, but staff ace Kyle Bradish pitched two innings and struck out five in what amounted to a final tuneup on Sunday ahead of a potential Game 1 assignment. The 27-year-old lowered his season ERA to 2.83 in 168 2/3 innings, which made him the first qualified Orioles pitcher with a sub-3.00 ERA since Hall of Famer Mike Mussina’s 2.54 mark in 241 innings in 1992.
Baltimore’s 101 wins were the most in the 32-season history of Oriole Park at Camden Yards and tied the 1971 Orioles for the fourth most in a season in franchise history.
The start time for Game 1 of the ALDS hasn’t been announced with many pointing out the scheduled Billy Joel and Stevie Nicks concert at M&T Bank Stadium next Saturday night and the potential mess that could create from traffic and parking standpoints.