This afternoon the Baltimore Orioles are going to play the biggest baseball game in the history of western civilization. Well…for this year, anyways! Far from it, although the Birds will head to Lakeland, FL to open up Florida Grapefruit League play against Detroit.
However it almost feels like the unofficial start to the unofficial start. I say that because it’s unclear how many of the Orioles’ regular players will be making the trip to Lakeland. Odds are the veterans will be few and far between. However needless to say, the Orioles will appear in their uniforms on the field in a game. Not only that, but there’ll be a box score with their names, real umpires, and people in the stands who paid admission.
The real key to today’s game is for the Birds to test their depth. That’s how a lot of teams and managers view these road games, especially early in the spring slate of games. If someone looks good today and continues that trend throughout the spring, he might find himself coming north with the team, or ending up just a phone call awa in Norfolk.
At the end of the day, once today’s game is over it’ll be forgotten – in the grand scheme. But when players get to Ed Smith Stadium today and see their names on the travel roster, it’ll be important to them. Hopefully that goes without saying.
For what it’s worth, Tyler Wilson will get the start this afternoon for the O’s. He’ll be oppposed by Detroit’s Michael Fulmer. Game time is set for just after 1 PM. Play ball!