U.S. Senator Mikulski Congratulates the Baltimore Orioles on the Senate Floor
U.S. Senator Barbara A. Mikulski (D-Md.) today spoke out on the Senate floor to congratulate the Baltimore Orioles on clinching the American League (AL) East Division title this week. The Baltimore Orioles defeated the Toronto Blue Jays 8-2 on Tuesday at Oriole Park at Camden Yards to secure their title. The Orioles last won the division title in 1997.
Senator Mikulski’s full remarks on the Senate floor, follow:
“Today I rise to congratulate the Baltimore Orioles, who have won American League (AL) East Division title! I’m wearing their colors today on the floor of the United States Senate, and I hope to wear them later this season at Camden Yards. My home team not only represents the tough enduring spirit of Baltimore, but of the entire state. This team never quits and it always plays hard. Sure, we tip our hats to the rest of the AL East – the Yankees, the Red Sox, the Rays and the Blue Jays. But this is our year!
“The Orioles are celebrating their 60th anniversary in Baltimore. The O’s, as we affectionately call them, arrived in 1954. I was a high school girl. I remember the excitement of the team coming, our first major league team. We had played AAA up until then. There was a big parade down Charles Street. Charm City was charmed by this new wonderful baseball team.
“There have been many O-Mazing events that have occurred since then, along with fantastic and legendary players. Brooks Robinson, Frank Robinson, Jim Palmer, Eddie Murray and ‘Ironman’ Cal Ripken, Jr.
“We remember our coaches like Earl Weaver who got the fans excited. And of course we remember Cal Ripken, Sr. who taught us the Oriole way.
“This year we have a team that is once again energizing and on its way to the playoffs. Anyone who has watched the Orioles this season at Camden Yards knows this was a true team effort. This AL East title was made possible by clutch hits and home runs, spectacular catches and gutsy pitching. When the all-star players weren’t on the field, workhorse veterans and promising young rookies stepped up night after night.
“Yes, there’s Oriole Magic. We have our manager, Buck Showalter. If you look at Mr. Showalter, he doesn’t crack a smile, but he teaches his players to crack a bat. His attention to the big picture and smallest detail is the way this team functions.
“And now we may be on our way to something called the ‘Battle of the Beltways.’ It is conceivable that we will be playing the Washington Nationals who have just won the National League East title. And we tip our hat to our friends in the District of Columbia. We’re as excited for them as we are about ourselves, and we can’t wait to meet.
“Three cheers for the Baltimore Orioles who have earned this fantastic title! And we won’t stop! We won’t stop until we have a pennant flying high off of our stadium!
“I want to congratulate the entire Orioles’ organization, from the managers to the front office people and the owner of the team, Peter Angelos, who really rescued our team many years ago from being sold out of town. Peter Angelos stepped up to the plate and saved it, keeping the team in Baltimore and has kept it on the go. And now this fantastic team under great leadership, wonderful players and the best fans in both leagues are looking forward to the playoffs.
“And you know what we’re looking forward to? It’s not only the game, but it’s the spirit of community that’s in Baltimore. Our City Hall in the evening is lit up in orange. As you travel the city, people are wearing the colors and laughing and giving each other high fives. If you came over to great institutions throughout Baltimore like Johns Hopkins, whether you’re an orderly or a facilities manager or a Nobel Prize winner, everybody is wearing the orange.
“Black, white, Hispanic, Latino, men and women. We’re all there. And you know why? Because it is all about baseball. It’s about a team. It’s about America. It’s about the land of the free and the home of the brave.”