Boston Red Sox Fans Shouldn't Panic, Baltimore Orioles Fans Should Be Realistic

Rich StoweAnalyst IIIApril 7, 2011

Red Sox Nation - stop worrying
Red Sox Nation - stop worrying

It's very early in the season and panic is already settling in for the fans of a certain team and the fans of another team are overly excited. 

I'm mainly talking about the fans of the Boston Red Sox and the Baltimore Orioles.

One team hasn't won a game yet, while the other has only lost once.  The season is one week old today and they've only played five games out of 162.

Yes, starting out with zero wins in the first five games historically isn't a good thing (only two teams have ever made the playoffs with such a start).  However, if you look closer at the standings, you'll see the Red Sox are only four games behind the Orioles with 157 games left to play! 

Raise your hand if you think the Red Sox won't be able to make up those four games at some point in the season, especially when they still have to play the Orioles 18 times this season.

The reverse is true for the Orioles as well.  Starting out the season with four wins in five games is great, but Orioles fans have to remember: It's only April.  You don't win your division or make the playoffs in April—it's what you do over the entire season that matters.  One losing streak of four games and they could drop to the bottom of the division.

Baseball is a game of streaks.  One bad week by either a player or a team can easily be rectified by a great streak over a week or two.

The greatest thing about baseball is that the season is just long enough that, over time, good teams will eventually win, bad teams will eventually lose and at the end of September a team's record will usually equal the talent they have.

Does anyone really think that the Red Sox, with all the talent they have, will remain at the bottom of the AL East? 

Right now, the Orioles are playing very well and may be the surprise team in baseball this season, but does anyone think they'll be able to maintain this pace over six months while holding off the Sox and Yankees

It could happen, but if I was a betting man and had to put money on either the Orioles going wire-to-wire as the leaders of the AL East or picking either the Yanks or Sox to overtake them, I would put all the money I could on the Yanks/Sox, and I wouldn't even hesitate.

So fans of all teams and players should just relax when we're only one week into the season.  If this was August/September and all of sudden your favorite team started losing badly or winning a lot, that would be the time to react, because that's when those kind of hot or cold streaks can affect playoff possibilities.

Just look back at the Rockies' history and you'll see that their playoff appearances haven't come from success or failure in April, they've come from how they've played in September. 

So everyone—fans and media included—needs to just chill and see how your team is doing throughout the season and realize five games out of 162 is just a very small sample and is not the end-all-be-all for the season.