Streaking into the break

We've reached the All-Star break without the Orioles folding or going 2-86. I had serious concerns back in April about both possibilities.

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A four-game sweep in Texas has invigorated some fans whose loyalty was being severely tested, who were scrambling for reasons to maintain interest (tracking the prospects, the managerial search, the race against the '62 Mets and '88 Orioles).

The first four-game road sweep since 1995 has left the Orioles with a 29-59 record, still the worst in baseball, but not by much.

Don't look now, but the Pirates are gaining on them.

Pittsburgh has dropped six in a row, leaving its record at 30-58.

That's a dysfunctional fam-a-lee.

Cleveland and Arizona have 34 victories, Seattle 35, Houston 36. The Orioles' four-game winning streak is currently tied with Philadelphia for the second-longest behind the White Sox, who have reeled off eight in a row.

This is a good thing...right? You weren't rooting for the Orioles to finish with the first pick in next June's first-year player draft. You didn't want them winning the Anthony Rendon sweepstakes.

Right?

Rendon is the Rice University third baseman who hit .394 with 26 homers, 85 RBIs, a .530 on-base percentage and .801 slugging percentage. The third baseman who struck out 22 times, committed only four errors and won the Dick Howser Trophy, which is the equivalent of the Heisman.

Yeah, that guy.

Is anyone conflicted? Is anyone feeling a little guilty for wanting that first overall pick, and for wondering whether the Orioles are better off owning the worst record than, say, the second- or third-worst record?

I'm just curious.

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