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Franchise Best/Worse: Baltimore Orioles


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Over the course of the next month, we'll venture through the history of each of the 30 Major League Baseball franchises, discussing some of the best and worst moments, players, teams, etc. It's more of a fun snapshot for discussion purposes than a be-all, end-all declaration. We continue today with the Baltimore Orioles.

The Orioles as we know them came to be in 1954, when the St. Louis Browns moved to Baltimore. Here are our totally subjective selections of the bests and worsts in franchise history. If you disagree -- and I'm sure you will! -- tell us about it in the comments.

Best team: 1970

The Orioles were a powerhouse in the late 1960s and entire 1970s, and they were at their best from 1969-71, when they won three straight pennants and had three straight seasons of 100-plus victories. The 1969 squad went 109-53 with a plus-262 run differential, but they lost the World Series to the Mets in five games.

So, we'll go with the 1970 team as the best in franchise history instead. They went 108-54 with a plus-218 run differential and did win the World Series, beating the Big Red Machine in five games. The 1970 Orioles had three Hall of Fame players (Frank Robinson, Brooks Robinson, Jim Palmer), a Hall of Fame manager (Earl Weaver), the AL MVP (Boog Powell), one 20-game winner (Palmer) and two 24-game winners (Mike Cuellar, Dave McNally). They started the season 5-0 and ended it with an 11-game winning streak, including three walk-off wins in the final four games.

The O's thoroughly thrashed the Twins in the ALCS -- they outscored them 27-10 in the three-game series -- before beating the Reds in the Fall Classic. Between the end of the regular season and the postseason, they won 17 straight games. And they went 115-55 in 1970 overall. Total domination.....

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