The Red Sox-Yankees rivalry has stood for over one hundred years at this point, and the Red Sox-Rays rivalry has been clearing benches for a little over ten years. But the Red Sox-Orioles rivalry is fairly new to the AL East.
The Baltimore Orioles were the basement dwellers of the AL East for what feels like forever. Now that they’ve showed up in a big way, it feels as though they’re out to get the Sox in particular. These past two nights were a testament to that.
Last night, both teams were on their A-game through 13 innings, but ultimately the Orioles came out on top thanks to Chris Davis, who has proved to be a pest to the Sox lately. Tonight, the O’s got up early, and the first-place Sox could only manage three hits. The Orioles won 22 of the last 31 games against the Sox, and Sox fans can’t even talk about what they did in 2011.
So what is it about the O’s? For starters, it’s an even matchup. You have the star center fielders Jacoby Ellsbury and Adam Jones, the young third basemen Will Middlebrooks and Manny Machado, and the out-of-left-field outfielders Daniel Nava and Chris Davis. Both teams have a lot of fight in them. And most importantly, both are AL East contenders.
Watching what happens between the Sox and the Orioles for the rest of this season should be interesting. With the young, fresh Orioles, and the chemistry of the Sox, both teams look playoff bound. But of course, only one can win the division. Still, at this point, it’s very possible that one of them will take the division while the other takes the wild card spot. Hopefully by then, the Sox can overcome whatever it is about the Orioles that causes them so much trouble.