As long as fans keep filling the stadiums, MLB will keep mandating the Nationals and Orioles to play each other each season. And as long as TV networks need catch phrases to promote their programs, we will keep getting terms like “Beltway Series.”
But I don’t have to like it.
The Beltway doesn’t run between Washington D.C. and Baltimore. In fact, you don’t even need to touch the Beltway to get to Baltimore. You can stay on 295 the entire way. So calling it the Beltway Series or the Battle of the Beltway is just illogical.
Battle of the Beltways isn’t much better. Yes, Washington and Baltimore both have beltways, but beltways aren’t unique to those cities. Plenty of cities have beltways. Richmond has a beltway.
Nor are the beltways defining features of the two cities. Washington D.C. and Baltimore are both diverse cities with deep and rich history. Furthermore, the two cities have great baseball history. To reduce the cities, and their baseball heritage, to a road is practically an insult.
I don’t think the Nationals and Orioles need to play each other every season. But if they do, MLB, FOX, and MASN should think of something more clever.
- Orioles and Nationals by the numbers (halfstreetheartattack.com)
- The Orioles-Nationals Attendance Numbers (halfstreetheartattack.com)
- Manny Machado vs. Bryce Harper (halfstreetheartattack.com)