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What do you remember most about the 'Why Not?' season?

Just got back from Detroit, where the Orioles left me on Thursday.

They went on to Canada, but I stayed in this country. Something about “past felonies” and “international incidents” that I really don’t want to detail here (just kidding, mom, just kidding).

Actually, I stayed the weekend in Detroit on my own free will. Seriously.

My brother and his family live in Central Michigan, and so my brother and my 18-year-old nephew met me in Detroit and we hung out for two days.

I went back to Comerica on Friday as a regular old Dan and watched the Tigers and Twins play. And this just in, Joe Mauer is good.

I might have misspelled the Twins catcher’s last name. I think I left out a V and a P in Joe M’s last name.

He’s got my vote, and not just because he was about six inches from going 5-for-5 in the game I saw Friday night.

We also went to the old State Theatre (the Fillmore Detroit now) on Saturday and saw Chickenfoot live. If you aren’t familiar with the band itself, you certainly are familiar with its musicians.

Chickenfoot features Sammy Hagar as the lead singer, Van Halen’s Michael Anthony on bass, guitar god Joe Satriani on lead and the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Chad Smith on drums.

Satriani’s guitar playing was worth the price of admission (and it wasn’t cheap) and Hagar, at age 62 believe it or not, can still scream with the best of them. He jumped, rolled and leaped – and never broke a hip the whole night.

Chickenfoot’s new CD is fine (a must-have if you miss Van Hagar), but their live show is the reason this group is together. Not normally my cup of tea now that I’m an old guy, but it was definitely something to check out.

Given the crowd – old rocker chicks and balding, paunchy dudes mixed in with some 20-somethings – it was definitely a flashback night.

And since the Orioles, kings of the flashback, are celebrating the 1989 “Why Not?” season Orioles throughout this year, I figured we’d continue the theme on a Monday.

I loved that 1989 team because I was in college in Pennsylvania and the year before had to endure the ignominy of the 0-21 Orioles. So that 1989 season was a reward for loyal Orioles fans (just imagine your reward when this club finally gets good).

Of all of those players that burst on the scene that year, I’d say my favorite was Pete Harnisch. The guy had “guts.” Damn that rusty nail.

Who was your favorite 1989 Oriole? And what was your most memorable moment from that season?

Daily Think Special: Who/what do you remember the most from the 1989 “Why Not?” season?


That's the season that cemented me as a lifelong O's fan. I was 10 years old.

A small list of images:
-Gregg Olsen's windup and curveball
-Mickey Tettleton's bizarre batting stance and gum/tobacco? in his cheek
-Dave Johnson, the truck driver from Middle River, coming in mid-season to light it up
-Dave Johnson pitching his heart out but still losing to the Blue Jays to end our season (and crying my ten year old eyes out)
-listening to every O's game on the radio in Ocean City because we didn't have HTS

That was the season that is the benchmark for hope every spring...because, well...Why Not?

I had just graduated high school in June 1989 and I was living in NH (but still an O's fan).

I got tickets to a game in July on the night of the game (fat chance that happening now) at Fenway Park. 9 rows behind home plate.

Jeff Ballard was pitching -- it was at one point 6-0 Red Sox-- we got to the game late and I missed the first inning where the sox got 3.

Fortunately, we came back and won the game and I got to tell all the Sox fans off. Man, I miss those days.

Anyway, the next to last game of the year (rusty nail game) I sat down to watch Dave Johnson make that gutsy performance..I was eating Pizza gold fish.

And in the bottom 8th, as I was eating goldfish i noticed something crunchy. There were ants in my goldfish crackers. I stopped eating and then Toronto got 2 runs.

The moral of the story: eat your goldfish in the Toronto bottom of the 8th, even if there are ants. Lesson learned!

Dan, The "Why Not" season was the year my kids and I (who were 13 and 15 at the time) went to as many home games as possible. For me, personally, my favorite Orioles were Mickey "Froot Loops" Tettleton and "Smokin' Joe" Orsulak.We went to Fan Fest, Oriole rallies at the Inner Harbor, card-signings at hobby shops, and waited for the players at the parking lot gate after every game.
Gregg Olson and Pete Harnisch were my daughter's favorite players.They actually took their time to meet her and were friendly to my kids. My son liked Randy Milligan and Bill Ripken. We were big fans of Steve Finley and Brady Anderson, too, for their outfield derring-do.
Best memories: My daughter baked Gregg chocolate chip cookies to honor him for breaking the rookie save record that year, and he even accepted them from her gracefully after the game. We also took a road trip to Boston and saw Dave Johnson make his major league debut at Fenway Park(just over 20 years ago. It was the second game of a double header..and he lost, but pitched well).
My most memorable game was the Mike Devereaux "fair or foul" home run game against the California Angels. Remember, their manager continued the argument before the next game even started and got tossed? By the way, I taped almost every game off Home Team Sports that season and still have every one of them in a file box, if you ever want to relive them, as well as two scrapbooks to commemorate the important games from the beginning to the end of that season.
I still have them, along with a baseball we took to every game that has almost the whole team's signatures on it. Do you remember players like Brian Holton, Phil Bradley, Jay Tibbs and Jeff Ballard?
Curt Schilling was a wild-eyed kid with a blonde rattail and an earring?
The 1989 season will live on in my family's memories forever, especially for being the year that my kids really got into baseball and we lived and died with each game as a family.
(By the way, the Glenn Davis trade officially killed my daughter's love for the Orioles and it was never the same for her after that.)

There were so many moments from that '89 season, Devo's barely clearing the fair pole homer against the Angels, Jeff Ballard striking out Don Mattingly three times in a game, the comeback win in Fewnway, and of course those season ending games in Toronto... but the moment that sticks with me to this day is Opening Day, Steve Finley laying it out there and making that catch against Boston, there were people predicting the O's would be no hit by Clemens and seeing him sacrifice his season for one catch said a lot about that team's pride. That season made me a fan for life.

Mike Devereaux's foul pole (maybe it hit it, maybe it didn't) home run to cap a wild game and beat the Angels on a hot July Saturday night is my favorite memory. O's scored 8 times in the last three innings to win 11-9. Even Larry Sheets got a key hit.

Fire Trembley

Steve Finley, opening day, Memorial Stadium, center field, separating his shoulder robbing the Red Sox of an early home run.

He immediately became my favorite player.

The highlight video! I was in 6th grade and wore that VHS tape out. The whole production was so corny ... opening scene in grocery store ... Mickey Who? Mickey You! ... the seizure inducing replays in the Running Down a Dream sequence ... and didn't Tettleton hit Fruit Loops boxes over the fence?

But man was it great! What a year, and what a heartbreaker in Toronto.

Pete Harnisch, walking from SkyDome to the team hotel after the Friday night game in the season's final series, and stepping on a nail. In Toronto, one of the cleanest big cities on the planet, this cat finds a nail to step on the night before his biggest start. UFB.

There was also Joe Carter laying down a squeeze bunt in the 9th to win a 1-0 game early in the season, a Sunday afternoon game in Cleveland. Bob Milacki had like a 3-hitter going.

But there were much happier memories, too. Gregg Olson breaking off those yakkers. Ol' Froot Loops Tettleton launching moonshots. Phil Bradley nearly cracking a smile (once). And all those kid outfielders -- Finley, Devereaux, Orsulak, Anderson. Randy Milligan coming out of nowhere. Tito Bell heading for nowhere. What a crazy ride.

Lots of great memories.

- Gregg Olson vs. the A's. More impressive knowing now that they may have been on the juice.

- Fruit Loops

- Cal Ripken's opening day homer.

- Mike Deveraux's home run vs. the Angels around the foul pole. If I recall correctly, Doug Rader the skipper for the Angels was tossed prior to the next game for that one.

- Jeff Ballard wins 18.

- Mickey Weston and Big Ben's debuts.

have to be dave johnson, a local
guy stepping up to pitch some
big ball games for the orioles
during that season......

Mickey and Fruit Loops. Ballard, Milacki and the bullpen all had their career that year. But most of all Frank Robinson did an awesome job with no name players and got everything they had to give out of their talent levels. Funny thing is they traded Eddie in the off season they played so well, then broke them up a year later, and sandwiched 1989 with another bad trade.

I have a ton of memories from that great year, my favorite as a fan in baseball.

- The opening day win over the Red Sox, which included a 3-run, game-tying HR by Cal and a great catch (resulting in injury) by Steve Finley, when some Boston sportswriter had predicted a Clemens no-hitter was great.

- Kevin Hickey coming out of a softball league to be our lefty stopper.

- Mike Devereaux winning 2 games in a row against the Angels with questionable fairball hits, the first a foul pole HR to cap a 10-9 comeback.

- Phil Bradley hitting a HR on the first pitch in the final chance game in the last series against Toronto, but then the O's failing to score and then Olson allowing the tying run on a wild pitch.

- Keith Moreland being a total flop as our late-season acquisition.

What do I remember? Not a lot, considering I was in my mother's womb at the time.

See, at least the old timers have the 'good old days' to look back on. Aside from Cal breaking the consecutive games record, my lasting memories of being an O's fan are Jeffrey Maier, Clay Bucholtz, and 30-3.

The younger generation of O's fan literally know nothing but losing. Hell, there are kids in middle school right now that weren't alive last time the O's had a winning season.

My favorite "Why Not" memory was definitely the Devo walk-off HR against Angels!

While my favorite Oriole is and always will be Cal, apart from him no one guy stands out as my favorite player from that team, but the short list would be Olson, Tettleton and "Moose" (Randy Milligan).

Someone needs to check the exact number of games, I think it was 32, but the O's were exactly 1 game behind Toronto in July and August. Every time the O's won, Toronto won. Every time Toronto lost, the O's lost. For 32 games, exacly 1 game back.

Check it out.

My favorite season ever, as a 13-year-old. So many favorite players, but I think Joe Orsulak (batting cleanup in one game) and Dave Johnson (pitching his guts out) personified the team.

So many favorite memories:

-- Finley's opening day catch; Ripken's opening-day HR off Clemens; Worthington's game-winning opening-day hit

-- Devo's "was it fair or foul HR" vs. Angels in extra innings

-- Olson fanning McGwire, Parker and Henderson in Oakland to cement himself as closer

-- Phil Bradley's leadoff HR to open the series finale in Toronto (even though it was a Jewish holiday and I wasn't supposed to watch, I snuck a peak and saw it)

-- Months of thrilling, fantastic baseball that I followed either on TV or listening to Jon Miller and Joe Angel. Or better yet, turning down the TV audio and listening to Miller and Angel game after game during that incredible season that still resonates with any die-hard O's fan, even one as jaded as me after 12 straight losing seasons.

mike devereux making an over the wall catch on bat day in may. After that watching gregg olsons over the couch breaking ball after breaking ball.

I liked our trusty center fielder Mike Devereaux, our solid utility guys Dave Segui and Craig Worthington, and our lead-off man Phil Bradley. I remember thinking Olsen was overrated and he DID blow a few games for them that year, most notably his wild pitch in the 8th inning that brought Lloyd Moseby in with the tying run in the opener of that final series with the Jays....O's were clinging to a 1-0 lead, the only run was Bradley's lead-off homer, first pitch of the game...(was Jamie Moyer the guy who started that game?) Then the next day was the "rusty nail" game when Dave Johnson had to start suddenly, but he pitched the game of his life and had the O's up with a 3-1 lead late in the game when they BLEW IT AGAIN! Such a traumatic weekend...I'll never forget that '89 team.

-Steve Finley sets tone for season on opening day, crashing into wall to make a catch.

- Bob Milacki, "Dr. Detroit" simply owned the Tigers.

- Yankees win one when Phil Bradley loses routine fly ball in the fog.

- Billy Ripken's Fleer baseball card with the obscenity on the bat.

- Frank Robinson going with a 4-man rotation.

- The Otter, Fruit Loops, Moose and, of course, The Iron Man.

-The excitement in Jon Miller's voice throughout the season.

Most memorable moment: probably Opening Day because (1) I was there and (2) I think it set the tone for the season. I vividly remember Steve Finley crashing into the RF wall to take away a HR, or at least an XBH, away from a BoSox hitter. Also Rip taking the Rocket deep. And Craig Worthington's walkoff hit in the 11th. It was just one game, but after 0-21 the year before, you just had the feeling it was going to be a special year.

It's not so much specific games or players for me as much as just the sheer improbability of it all. Following immediately after the epic disaster of the '88 season with that historic start, to turn around and almost complete a worst to first reversal was so unexpected and brought a summer's worth of good feelings.

The player I remember most was Gregg Olson. Essentially a rookie closer with a good fastball but a devastating curve that had a break so big as to be almost unhittable. Unfortunately I remember that one against the Jays that was also uncatchable. Who knows how it might have turned out had that one not gotten away. But without the Otter we'd have never gotten that far in the first place so you can't be mad at him.

Best memory? Probably a night game at Oakland on April 26, 1989. Gregg Olson had come on in the eighth inning to protect a 2-1 lead and recorded a 3-up, 3-down inning.

In the ninth, he had to face Dave Parker, Dave Henderson and Mark McGwire. Olson brushed back Parker with a fastball, and Parker, who was a pretty intimidating fellow, made a move as if he might charge the mound. Olson, who was less than a year removed from Auburn, didn't hesitate. He came down off the mound and glared at Parker as if to say, "You want a piece of me?" Parker backed off. Olson struck out the side: Parker swinging, Henderson swinging and McGwire looking at three called strikes (thank you for refreshing my memory on a few details).

That, I think, is when I started to sense something special was happening.

1. Steve Finley's opening day catch and jamming his shoulder.
2. Greg Olson closing games out
3. Mickey Tettleton rejuvenating his career and his wife attributing it to his breakfast cereal.
4. Randy Milligan
5. Pete Stanicek
6. George Will's editorial after the last game of the season about Jamie Quirk taking responsibility for Olson's pitching getting past him in the deciding game.
7. Ben McDonald pitching in the final game of the season.
8. Dave Johnson

Best memory? It probably was a night game in Oakland on April 26, 1989. This was at a time when Oakland clearly was the best team in the American League. Gregg Olson had come on in the eighth inning to protect a 2-1 lead, and recorded a 3-up, 3-down inning.

In the ninth inning, Olson faced Dave Parker, Dave Henderson and Mark McGwire. Olson brushed back Parker with a fastball, and Parker, who was a pretty intimidating guy, made a move as if he might charge the mound. Olson, less than a year from Auburn, didn't hesitate. He walked down off the mound toward home plate and glared at Parker as if to say, "You want a piece of me?" Parker backed down. Olson struck out the side: Parker and Henderson swinging and McGwire looking (thank you for refreshing my mind on some details).

I think that's when I realized something special might be happening with that team.

DEVO was my fav.

Best memory: I managed a church league softball team that year. My players wrote to Frank Robinson and he sent me an autographed photo of himself

(It's kind of sad that some of our best memories of Os baseball over the past 20 years come from a team that didn't vene make the playoffs.)

Favorite player: I guess you could say this about a lot of guys, but if Gregg Olsen hadn't hurt his arm, he might have been the greatest closer ever.

My favorite Oriole from that time was Gregg Olson. My favorite memory, though, was from my own home. A friend came over to watch one of the games (O's in Toronto if I recall, in the final deciding series), and my 4 year old son was with us. In a clutch situation, Cal Ripken struck out, and my friend grumbled, "Ripken, you bum!" My son turned around with a shocked expression on his face and said, "He's not a bum - he's my hero!" That innocent faith and admiration is something I'll always cherish.

best memory -- after holding first place all season, the orioles are about to lose first place in august against the red sox. they fall behind 6-0. randy milligan hits a 3-run homer off rob murphy in the 7th to tie it. orioles go on to win 9-8.

most painful orioles memory of all time -- gregg olson's wild pitch with two outs in the 8th in the opener of the last series against toronto. ties the game and they go on to win in extra innings.

I was stationed aboard a Navy frigate in San Diego at the time and had endured the 0-21 start while patrolling the Persian Gulf the year before.

I was a big fan of Randy Milligan and Jeff Ballard. These two guys came out of nowhere to help the Orioles contend. A big highlight for me was when the Orioles beat Oakland on a nationally televised NBC Game of the Week (remember those). I also remember the look on Dave Johnson's face sitting in the dugout while the bullpen blew a late game lead allowing the Blue Jays to clinch the division on the next to the last day of the season.

The 89 team is still my favorite Os team.

I feel sorry for Ryan K and the younger fans. My first Orioles memories are the 1966 season. Then you have the three straight WS appearances. 1977 was very much like 1989. Great rivalry with the Yanks and Brewers through the early 80s, culminating with 1983 WS. To think that some fans have only seen the decade of losing is sad.

1989 is so long ago, I hardly remember the details. Thanks to folks here for reminding me.

I didn't even know the O's were trying to celebrate the '89 season this year.....

Well, my memories of that wonderful season:

1.) The introduction of the new uniforms (no more cartoon bird :-( ) which weren't so bad, but I missed the cartoon bird and still do....

2.) Ripken's HR off of Clemens on Opening Day. I didn't think that that would ever happen, so what a nice suprise that was...

3.) Ballard and Milligan's career years

4.) Fruit Loops Tettleton and the Otter coming out of nowhere to be great players for a few years.

5.) And the unbelievable sadness of that final weekend in Toronto. I do kind of remember the O's being exactly one game back for a good month as one previous poster mentioned.

Bonus Memory: I was 13 that year and I remember my dad switched jobs that September. They held a goodbye party for him at his job downtown and one of his coworkers actually had gotten a hold of some O's playoff tickets that had already been printed and distributed to season ticket holders in case the O's won that weekend. I had never seen playoff tix at that point (and haven't since then either), so that was something really neat to see even if they never wound up being used and were worthless after that weekend in 1989.

Anothe Bonus Memory: I also remember the Billy Ripken F*** Face baseball card. I also remember the black box, the white out, the corrected version, and the extended pinstripe versions that were all released to cover up the obscenity.

Hang in there Ryan'll get ateam that makes theplayoffs one of these days....sonn hopefully. Heck, after what happened in the '88 season (0-21) the '89 season was awesome. Who/what was not to like. I'll always rememebr the Otter, Gregg Olson. His curveball was nasty. Then you had all the regular schmoes around the Iron Man. Moose Milligan, Finley, B. Ripken, Tettleton, Devo, Ballard & Harnisch. This was a classic Oriole's team...the sum was greater than the parts. Frank Robby at the helm wasn't too shabby either although it would have been nice to have Sr. back in the 3b box.

A couple that haven't been mentioned yet:
-Future Oriole Brad Komminsk tumbling over the wall at Memorial Stadium in a desperate attempt to rob Cal Ripken of homerun number 20. He dropped the ball when he hit the ground.
-3 relievers (Holton, Thurmond, & Schmidt) plus a 3-run 10th inning jack by Craig Worthington off Jack Morris to down the Tigers.
So many good memories. I was at the game in the fog and even though we lost, it was probably the best game I've ever attended.

Well, I'm the ad guy who wrote the line and the song, so the season was especially incredible for me. My most memorable moment was the meeting with then-club president Larry Luchino, during which we presented and sold the line, "Why Not?". Bob Aylward, who was then the Director of Marketing, cautioned me that Luchino didn't see the value of theme lines or rallying cries. So, I decided to lie to Larry and tell him that I saw a fan in the stands with a Why Not? sign. The ploy worked. Since the line was supposedly written by a fan and not the ad agency, it suddenly became authentic in Larry's eyes. He then allowed us to create a logo and a few banners. And the press did the rest.

One of the greatest seasons ever. Got my drivers license that July and made a habit of driving to Memorial Stadium from Northern Virginia with anyone who wanted to come in my 1976 Chevy Chevette. Why is the organization not honoring this team?? It would be an awesome night to bring these guys back.

The greatest memories:

- Down 6-0 to Boston at Fenway, Frank Robinson calls in Kevin Hickey from the bullpen to sit in the dugout. "This place is a morgue," Robinson told Hickey, and instructed him to get the dugout excited. The Orioles came back and won 8-6.

- Finley's catch and Cal's bomb opening day.

- Fair or foul? Doug Radar getting tossed at home plate the next day before the game even started while exchanging lineup cards with the umps, arguing the fair or foul call from the night before.

- Phil Bradley going yard of Stottlemyer on the first pitch Friday night in the final series in Toronto.

- That incredible, gutty performance Saturday afternoon in Toronto by Dave Johnson, who pitched the game of his life even though we lost the game and division title that day. I remember Bob Costas on NBC Game of the Week and Johnson tearing up in the dugout when the cameras were on him in the ninth inning.

- That April save in Oakland where Gregg Olson was born as a closer.

- Ballard and Milacki.

- Ben McDonald hype

- fruit loops

- And finally, the Why Not video on VHS. A fine Orioles production with Jon Miller narrating.

Was 13 yrs old at the time and wondered how anyone could hit Gregg Olson's curveball.

The most the O's and Toronto won/lost on the same day down the stretch that year was 5 games in a row, not 32 as previously claimed. Sure seemed like every day, though.

Truck Driver Dave Johnson has to be the highlight of the year. But, there are sooo many good memories from that year. I can remember Greg Olsen's curve ball going at Jose Canseco's head, and Jose bailing out of the box like a scarred rabbit...Only to have the ball snap and come down across the plate for a strike. Jose just standing there shaking his head looking like an idiot.

I was also 13 that year and remember going to three games versus the Rangers. Nolan Ryan was the starting pitcher in two of those outings (it was his first year back in the AL since 1979) and was the losing pitcher in both games. I returned to Memorial Stadium the day after Ryan's second loss and watched Mike Devereaux hit a 10th inning homer that hit the foul pole (It was only a couple of weeks after his controversial foul pole homer against the Angels).

Because I was so young back then, I enjoyed everyones memories and the names like Harnisch & Finley opened up a part of my memory that I had forgotten about. Back then my friends and I used to play with baseball cards, making nylon fields and used small aluminum foil as the baseball. I'm sure I've destroyed several tops & fleer cards worth some money today.

I only remember the 88 season because we started 0-21, but the 89 season is when I became a believer and a lifetime fan. Ripken was the star but my favorite players were Devereaux (coolest name I ever saw )& Tettleton (mouth full of something) and that curve Olsen threw amazed me. I feel bad because I feel like I've been longing for a winning team, but I see some have waited longer than I. As bad as our record is now, this is the first time in awhile that I see a plan to get us back to winning.

I was on my honeymoon in Hawaii in late September in 1989. I had to find a newspaper or a television all the time to see what was happening. Fortunately, my wife understood, God bless her.

Damn that rusty nail nothing! That rusty nail was fate intervening to allow the Orioles to win the pennant! It allowed I believe it was Dave Johnson to start instead of Harnisch. It didn't allow however for Frank Robinson intervening with what fate was trying to accomplish and losing the game by pulling a winning Johnson and bringing in Greg Olson to lose blow two games in a row!

I'm surprised so many people remember opening day and Steve Finley's catch. I was there and not only did it set the tone for the season, but even at that moment, it gave a great sense of positive energy and hope. He really did set the tone with that catch.

Watching Frank Robinson remove a pitcher in the middle of an at bat ,after he gave up a long foul ball that had home run distance'

A name not yet mentioned, Jay Tibbs, who was acquired from Pittsburgh, I believe was 4-0 in July. Another unsung hero.

O man, the "Why Not" Birds!
So many great memories from that summer, I was a junior at St. Mary's College in Southern Maryland, but was spending the summer working as many do, in Ocean City, ah the beach, the girls, the music...oh wait, this is supposed to be about dem O's, right, right. Randy Milligan hitting timely bombs, Mickey Tettleton doing the same or missing the ball completely. Mickey didn't get cheated. Chris Hoiles n that young staff. Big Ben Alligator Wrestling McDonald! Jeff Ballard, a dazzling lefty who reminded us of Flanny. Bob Milacki and of course Harnisch, then Dave Johnson in the 2nd half! What a gutsy gamer! Someone mentioned Fins and Brady sideburns patrolling the outfield pre-power days for both of them, flanking Mike Devereraux, uh, not yet, '89 was primarily Mike D n center, Phil Bradley in left and Orsulack in right! Brady hadn't learned to hit yet so he saw alot of pine down the stretch. Not Jolting Joe Orsulack, or Phil Bradley who seemingly always had such clutch hits. Can't forget sluggers Larry Sheets and Jim Traber either. A season in the sun for both. Then, poof they were gone! Greg Olson, that's low hanging memory fruit guys! of course with that riding fastball and devastating, knee buckling 12-6 curve! but what about unsung Mark Williamson getting us to Olson? Greatly overlooked. But I guess the most everlasting feeling from '89 for me was one of redemption from the year before for our beloved O's and thinking I could do anything I set my hear too. I was from Harford County and had played summer ball w Billy. So watching he and Cal literally close down the middle so deftly, w so much precision, well, it led to my best 2 yrs of college statistically and the knowledge I still carry today. That w alot of hard work, love of what you do, and passion, well, Why Not go ahead and do anything!

You guys hit on a lot of them. I remember just how fantastic HTS was - that awesome camera angle from behind the plate made homers look majestic. The sense of humor - LoLo, the kidding of Tom Davis, the little highlight vignettes they made (Mickey Tettleton homers with the ball replaced with a Fruit Loop box and "Don't Mess with Bill"), etc. I remember after townball games I played in (I lived in York at the time) watching the games with teammates. Great season, on the 10th anniversary of another great but bittersweet season.

I hung a banner from the right field stands that said "GIMME SOME SLAK" on a Saturday NBC game...and he didn't even play! (They were facing a lefty)

They had 4 great centerfielders (Besides Devo and FInley, they also had a young Brady Anderson and drum roll...stan Jefferson)

Dave Schmidt opened the year in the rotation and was HORRIBLE which paved the way for him to move to the bullpen and for guys like Harnisch, Johnson, and Tibbs to step up.

Randy Milligan NOT getting enough playing time...they were stealing his ABS with Larry Sheets and Jim Traber.

We were a well above average defensive team, Worthington had solid range, Billy Ripken was Gold Glove worthy, and even though Keith Moreland was a bust, how about the timely hitting of Tim Hullett Packard?

Enough said.

thanks for the post!

The only moment I remember from real time was a day game against the A's I think when Billy Ripken made that diving bare-handed catch/throw to first all in one motion on a chpper from behind the mound. I'm pretty sure it was my first baseball game I ever went to, as I was almost 5 yrs old at the time. Of course that moment and many others already mentioned were immortalized with many viewings of the "Why Not?" highlight video.

Speaking of which, is it available for purchase anywhere? I'd love to own it or at least see it one more time.

I was only 10, but I can remember everything about the '88 and '89 seasons. As bad as '88 was, was as good as '89 was. I remember the one game playoff with Toronto in '89. My family was having a party, and I was inside watching that game, and nearly was brought to tears when Joe Carter hit the game ending homer.
But to this day, If I were to make my favorite Orioles team... I would name nearly all the players on teh '89 team.

My favorite (and second) O's season living in Baltimore. The entire season is recapped at our website for your reading pleasure:

The funny thing is despite all of the great memories being pointed out (and great TV and radio, something now sorely missed), the thing I remember the most was the front office getting greedy and trading three key players for Glenn Davis.

I was against the trade not because I knew Davis would be a bust. I was against it even if he had hit 120 HRs in three years.

The Orioles just weren't THAT good despite the last weekend thing in Toronto. Sure, after 1988 (actually after August 5, 1986) anything looked good ... but the truth was the O's didn't even win 90 games that year.

They simply couldn't afford a 3-for-1 trade. All three players were key players. It just became compounded with all three exceeding expectations and Davis doing nothing.

The funny thing is how Eli Jacobs was convinced by the front office to make the trade. Jacobs may not have been the best owner in O's history, but at least he was willing to listen and let his baseball people perform their roles.

I turned 11 that summer, and what a summer it was! After the misery of the 88 season, the team largely cleaned house and brought in all the guys we now know and love. Most folks have mentioned my favorite memories from that season (the Fruit Loops revelation, Greg Olson, Steve Finley's early season injury, shouting for "Devo" and "Moose" at games), but there's one that I remember from my childhood that has only been alluded to so far. I loved watching the Orioles win that year, but I also loved watching HTS and Mel Proctor and Jon Lowenstein call the games. Jon had such great stories about his years with the O's and such colorful commentary that you couldn't help having a good time watching, even if the O's were losing. And nothing beats Mel Proctor's call when the birds would park one over the fence. Nobody did it better than the two of them or had better chemistry. I still have an Orioles cap I got around that time that I wear to games and I love it when the occassional fan recoginizes the HTS logo on the side. It's my little salute to Mel and Jon.

I remember going to a game that summer against Oakland and remarking how huge those A's (Canseco, McGuire, D. Henderson) looked even next to the Orioles. Now we know why. But the Birds hung with them. That said, the season was a bit of a wonderful fluke. The 1990 team was bad and the Davis deal wasn't until 1991 (which seemed even worse). A rotation of Ballard/ Milacki/Johnson/Harnisch plus Tibbs, Schmidt etc was not one for the ages. It's amazing they got as far as they did. But it was a great ride.

That Saturday afternoon game in Toronto was probably the first complete baseball game I’d ever seen on television. I’ve never been able to root for the Blue Jays since that series. I didn’t like Lee Mazzilli because he got on late in the game and was subbed for with a pinch runner, that runner scored what turned out to be the winning run. We should have never hired him to be a manager!!! I believe Larry Sheets struck out in the 9th and the game ended. I grew up a little that day, it taught me that wanting something, not matter how bad, is not enough to get it. At the same time I learned that no matter how deep in a hole you think you are, it is never a reason not to try! That season and that series still stand as one of the defining moments of my life and I was only 12! Each spring I think about that team and how alive the area was with baseball. I feel sad for people that didn’t participate in it, I’ve never seen anything quite like it. Just look at the response this board has got. The Orioles would be justified in making 2009 a year of remembering that year. Best Orioles team that I’d ever seen. I don’t know if anyone could ever figure out exactly where it came from, but at the end of the day they won their games. Each spring when people say that the O’s are hopeless I somehow remind myself that they could win, I mean, Why Not?

I remember:

The "Why Not" song on 98 Rock, 1 year after Bob Rivers stayed on the air for a week straight after the 0-21 start.

I remember Frank Robinson pulling pitchers entirely too early in that final series against the Blue Jays.

I remember the game against the A's when Olsen fanned 3 straight in the 9th, to include Mark McGwire and Dave Parker.

During a This Week In Baseball segment, there was a question for MLB players if they knew the starting pitching rotation for the Birds. Mookie Wilson's reply was so funny. "NO!! I couldn't do it..couldn't even do it if I tried"

Why the heck did Bill Ripken give Dave Johnson a frisbee after a win? Johnson then proceeded to stuff it down the back of his pants. Anyone remember that?

Oh..also with the '89 Why Not highlights tape: The Jim Carrey lookalike shaking the banner that said, "Comeback Kids"

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