This is what you want if you are an Orioles fan. Or a Boston Red Sox fan. Or a baseball fan in general.
Starting Monday night, the Orioles play host to the American League East-leading Red Sox for four games at Camden Yards.
If the Orioles sweep, they are by themselves atop the division. If they get swept, they’re buried in the division hunt and likely gasping for air in the Wild Card race. A split, and the Orioles at least win the season series and the tiebreaking advantage, but their climb to the division title becomes more unlikely.
It’s high drama. It’s playoff baseball. It’s fun, people. For the players, for the writers, for the fans.
To put this series into perspective and give us a look at who the Red Sox are heading into Monday, ESPN.com’s Red Sox beat writer Scott Lauber joins us on the “Around The Beat” podcast.
Lauber, who is in his seventh season covering the Red Sox (he previously worked for the Boston Herald), talked to us a few minutes before first pitch Sunday night at Fenway Park, where the Red Sox were trying to sweep the New York Yankees.
He provides his insight into the renaissance of Hanley Ramirez, the swan song of David Ortiz, the challenge for David Price and the MVP qualifications of Mookie Betts.
For you Orioles’ fans that believe Manny Machado is not being talked about enough for AL MVP, well, Lauber is with you. He thinks the Orioles third baseman (and emergency shortstop) should be right in the middle of the conversation with Betts and a few others.
Lauber also shares his thoughts on Orioles’ pitchers Dylan Bundy and Kevin Gausman and what effect they can have on the outcome of this pennant race.
Each week I’ve suggested you check out this podcast. I might have to resort to pleading this week. Because it’s for your own good, baseball fans. This is what it’s all about: A detailed look into Orioles-Red Sox as they face off in September.