It's about time. That's how Baltimore Orioles fan Ann Moats described her favorite baseball team's comeback season, and area fans agree.
With the third-best record in the American League, the Orioles are finally on the verge of making the playoffs after a 15-year absence.
"They got even better with each game this season, and you could see the progression," said Moats, 44, of York Township.
Jay Livelsberger knew since the second half of the Orioles' 2011 season that this year would be a great one.
"Buck Showalter's doing a good job," said Livelsberger. "It hasn't been just one player; it's somebody different each game. So it's been a group effort."
Livelsberger, 24, of Jacobus, has been an Orioles fan for his whole life, and his parents have baby pictures of him wearing Orioles onesies. He played baseball when he attended Dallastown Area High School.
"After 15 years of not very interesting baseball, this is great," he said. "Especially with all of the extra innings wins and bringing in all of the young guys."
On Saturday night against the Red Sox, the Orioles won their 16th straight extra-inning game.
Renewed interest: It's terrific, said Chris Manning, 80, of Towson.
"I usually just look at their scores the next day and maybe watch an inning or two," Manning said. "But now I watch a good part of their games.
"I feel good for the people who have been Orioles fans for so long that they finally get to see them do so well," he said.
"Every game they find a new way to win, and I hope they go all the way," said Manning. "But if not, they still had a good year."
Charles Huckenberry, 29, of Lower Windsor Township, said he's an Orioles fan but he didn't make it to any games this year.
His 7-year-old son Jayden wanted to go to a Phillies game instead, because that's the team he got into when the Orioles were in their losing streak.
"It feels really good because it's been a while since they've done this well," Huckenberry said.
"I keep thinking they're going to fail just because that's what they have always done for the past 15 years," he said.
Sales boost: Sales of Orioles memorabilia have gone up at JJ Cards N Toys at the York Galleria, said manager Chelsie Hare.
"We have a lot of bandwagoners," said Hare, who is a lifelong Orioles fan.
Hare and her husband had season tickets to the Orioles until they had kids, but sports are still on television 24-7 at their house.
People coming into the store this year frequently remark about how they can't believe how well the Orioles have done, Hare said.
She said that Baltimore fans are also faced with a dilemma they have not had for 15 years keep watching baseball or switch to football?
"Normally it's OK to stop watching the Orioles by the time football starts because they're doing horrible," Hare said. "But not this year.
"Everyone is just hoping they can keep it up," she said.
-- Reach Chelsea Shank at 505-5432 or email@example.com