Orioles Magic, Old & New

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It was 1995. Cal was set to tie—and then break—Lou Gehrig’s consecutive games streak record. I worked for the Orioles as the Director of Publishing. It was a great year to be a member of the Orioles front office.

In about seven weeks, we put together Cal’s Commemorative Book, a publication created by our organization that celebrated Cal and his accomplishments that was sold on September 6, 1995. Besides my debut novel that was released in March, it’s the only other print publication I’m immensely proud to have been a part of, and it was an honor to serve as its editor.

On the evening of 2131, with banners on the warehouse and Camden Yards in the spotlight that night, I had the pleasure of escorting Cal’s mom and dad for the evening. I’ll never forget how their faces beamed with pride as I brought them from the suite to the dugout for the ceremonies.

Along the way, I saw Joe DiMaggio. My late grandmother was a tremendous fan of his. She would have been so happy that I caught a glimpse of him up close on the field.

Cal & me…autograph day.

I couldn’t attend Cal’s statue unveiling tonight at Camden Yards, despite the fact that I had seats behind the plate for the game; my kids had commitments and my husband had to attend a dinner for work. I watched the game on television and saw Camden Yards filled with orange shirts. There’s a new spirit to the place, just like there was during the 1996 and 1997 seasons when the Orioles made it to post-season play under the direction of then manager Davey Johnson.

The Orioles of new are an exciting team to watch. Buck Showalter, his coaches, and his energized team have kept us cheering this season. Although I’ve moved on in my career and enjoy every single minute I spend as an educator at a university, I’ll always feel a connection to that place. It is magical, especially to those of us who moved from Memorial Stadium and saw Camden Yards open in 1992 and felt its early glory days.

Sometimes it feels as if not a day has gone by.

I raise my glass to this team—this winning team that’s in the thick of a pennant race—this team that moved into first place yesterday—this team we fans are proud to call our own.

It’s wonderful to revel in this new Orioles magic.

8 Comments Add yours

  1. Anonymous says:

    We will revel ’til the Birds have played the last inning…GO ORIOLES!!!!

    1. Even though they lost last night, this team has some gusto! So much fun to be a fan and a part of the action. Thanks for your comment!

  2. jenniesisler says:

    My husband had just graduated college the previous spring when Cal broke the streak. It’s one of his most cherished memories. I’ve just about given up on my Braves and have totally thrown my hat into the Orioles ring, expecially now that they’re in a dead heat for first place. Who’d have thought that would happen? Let’s go O’s!

    1. It’s so great that you and your husband have fond memories of Cal’s streak. And we O’s fans need all the support we can get, so keep cheering!

      1. jenniesisler says:

        We will! We’re not Nationals turncoats like my in-laws;) Besides, living in MA it’s so much fun watching the Sox go down in a blaze of glory. Or maybe just a blaze.

  3. jenniesisler says:

    Reblogged this on Jen's Rambling Thoughts and commented:
    Reblogged in honor of my husband’s favorite team and the only AL team I support:) I’ll always be a Braves fan but the Orioles have captured my heart this year. Let’s go O’s!

  4. Seb says:

    A standing ovation for this! Our O’s are making us proud and Cal was just about the finest gentleman ever to play pro sport -what an ambassador for the game! We’re the Why Not O’s again!

  5. I agree! 1989 was the year I started full-time with the O’s…they Why Not? year. It was so great! I remember how everyone rallied around the team. We even had a pep rally at the old Festival Hall (now the Convention Center) and I met Mohammed Ali. Everything about it was thrilling. I’m sure folks are feeling the same way today…Why Not? Thanks for the comment and for following Steph’s Scribe, Seb!

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