Buck up O's fans, some franchises have had it much worse - BaltimoreBaseball.com

Dan Connolly

Buck up O’s fans, some franchises have had it much worse

Whenever I was upset about something as a kid, my mother would explain to me that there were many children less fortunate than I was. That no matter what I was upset about, others had it worse.

Frankly, that rationale ticked me off.

I didn’t really care about those other children. I was more concerned about what I didn’t have or why I couldn’t do something. Hey, I was a kid.

Well, I’m my mother’s son. So I’m here to give you a similar reminder, Orioles fans. There are some cities and fan bases worse off than you.

The 2016 playoffs are a reminder of that. The Orioles made this year’s postseason – for one game. And then they were done after that frustrating loss in Toronto.

Yes, they have made the postseason three out of the past five seasons; the first time the franchise has accomplished that since making the playoffs five times in six years from 1969 to 1974 (when they had to win the division every year to advance to the postseason).

But, yes, the Orioles’ streak for not getting to the World Series – or winning it – has stretched to 33 years.

Thirty-three years — that’s a long time. That’s a title drought that is married and has two kids, a mortgage and a SUV payment.

So I’m sure when the Orioles bowed out of the postseason in early October, the here-we-go-again, woe-is-the-Orioles mindset took over for many.


Now here I come with that bitter taste of reality on a proverbial spoon.

There are nine franchises that have gone longer than the Orioles without winning a World Series. That includes your frenemies in Pittsburgh.

The last time the Pirates have been in – or won – an October Classic?

You guessed it. Back when they were a family – in 1979, when they beat the Orioles in seven games. Call it, “The Curse of Sister Sledge.”

Of those nine franchises I mentioned, six – assuming you include the Montreal Expos/Washington Nationals as one – have been around since before the Orioles’ last title in 1983 and have never — as in ever — won a World Series. That sad-sack group: The Texas Rangers, Houston Astros, Milwaukee Brewers, San Diego Padres, Seattle Mariners and Nats/Expos.

Two additional franchises, the Colorado Rockies and Tampa Bay Rays, have never won a World Series. But they came into existence in the 1990s and made it to a World Series in the 2000s.

The other two franchises that have been in existence longer than the Orioles’ drought and haven’t captured a championship since then are now in a good position to make a little history: The Chicago Cubs, who haven’t won it all since 1908 and haven’t made it to the World Series since 1945; and the Cleveland Indians, who stopped the Orioles from reaching the World Series in 1997, but haven’t been World Champs since 1948.

The Orioles are one of five franchises that haven’t won a World Series since the 1980s. The others: The Detroit Tigers (1984), the New York Mets (1986), the Los Angeles Dodgers (1988) and the Oakland A’s (1989). Besides the Orioles, the Dodgers are the only other one in that group to have not made another World Series since winning a title ring.

In fact, of the teams that have made at least one World Series appearance, only the Cubs, Brewers and Pirates have stayed away from the October Classic longer than the Orioles.

The Toronto Blue Jays, by the way, haven’t been to a World Series since Joe Carter touched them all in 1993 – 23 years ago. So the Blue Jays’ drought has a student loan payment and a beat-up old car.

Maybe that makes you feel a little better. Or a lot worse.

I’m really not sure what my intention – or my mother’s back in the day – was in providing you this perspective.

But, hey, now you know about the less fortunate.



  1. Boog Robinson Robinson

    October 14, 2016 at 8:02 am

    I guess this logic makes the O’s the King of the Losers. I feel so much better now.

  2. Bancells Moustache

    October 14, 2016 at 9:22 am

    Yes, there are teams that have had longer droughts, no doubt. The frustrating thing is that for the first part of my life, the Baltimore Orioles were one of the most successful and best run organizations in all of professional sports. Orioles fans walked into Fenway and the Bronx with their heads held high. Then they hit a rough patch and it seems like those days were erased in the minds of much of the fanbase and the organization itself. For the past 5 years, as the Orioles quietly became one of the best teams in MLB, O’s fans continued to keep this false image of the lovable loser, just happy to be here, ragtag organization as their default setting. Whenever criticism was leveled at Showalter, the responses were usually “hey, we were terrible before he got here”. That’s the standard in Baltimore, at least now we don’t suck? This is made all the more strange when you consider that, when Autumn comes and O’s fans swap out their orange jerseys for purple ones, they are demanding championships. Yet every year, even as the team has amassed more wins in the past half-decade and is pretty much the designated assignment for whoever the Home Run King is that year, some guy from ESPN waves a spreadsheet and some acronyms in our face and we are supposed to think these guys are losers. It’s ridiculous.
    Now it seems the tide is finally turning. People are finally starting to ask why there is no confetti on Pratt St. That’s why I think it is a GOOD thing that Birdland is lamenting what might have been. It’s time to drop the talk of ‘meaningful September games’ and Wild Card slots and start demanding the hardware. You are fans of one of the flagship franchises of Major League Baseball. Act like it.

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      October 14, 2016 at 1:08 pm

      Dang Right!!! Don’t stop him now, he’s on a roll!

      Who’s with us? What? Over? Did you say ‘over’? Nothing is over until we decide it is! Was it over when the …

      • Bancells Moustache

        October 14, 2016 at 3:11 pm

        Okay, looks like we’re on our own Boog… Damn… Well, it’s off to Capitals blogs for me…

    • Dan Connolly

      October 15, 2016 at 10:03 am

      I was just letting the roll, roll.

  3. DutchDinger

    October 15, 2016 at 4:43 pm

    The Sister Sledge – Ugh!

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