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The Caw: A Love Affair Between Ravens And Orioles

Posted Sep 30, 2012

Ed Reed, Anquan Boldin, Art Jones and John Harbaugh are supporting the Orioles’ pennant race.

Seldom do I see Ed Reed not wearing his Orioles hat these days.

So when he did interviews with an Under Armour black floppy hat the other day, I asked Reed what happened to his O’s gear. He knew exactly where it was.

“My O’s hat is on my island, on top of my football, in my kitchen right now,” he said with a laugh.

Reed’s been rocking the black and orange for a while, but the excitement of the Orioles playoff push has seeped into every corner of the Ravens locker room.

There’s a definite birdie love affair developing as the Orioles are pushing for the playoffs and Ravens are in the hunt for another trip of their own. And personally, it has been pretty awesome to watch the relationship blossom this summer and fall.

“The Ravens are big fans of the Orioles,” Head Coach John Harbaugh said Friday. “We’re cheering them on in this pennant race.”

Reed, who has been to the playoffs six times, offered some advice to the Orioles in their late-season run with those pesky (I could have chosen many other words) New York Yankees.

“They’re playing great ball right now,” Reed said. “It’s about turning up and still winning games and getting prepared to be the best seed you can be. Just keep on winning; you’ve got a bunch of support from the city. The city loves it.”

Anquan Boldin showed his support too, rocking an Orioles hat for the NBC crew that appeared when he was introduced on Sunday Night Football against New England.

Ravens defensive end Art Jones has become good pals with Orioles shutdown closer Jim Johnson. The two went to the same high school, Union Endicott, in Rochester, N.Y. Johnson had graduated by the time Jones got there, but they shared many of the same teachers.

Jones’ old flag football coach was Johnson’s baseball coach, and he suggested that the two Baltimore pro sports figures should connect because they have similar, outgoing personalities.

So Jones and Johnson started texting and Johnson invited the Ravens defensive lineman to an Orioles game this summer. They met up afterwards and have stayed in touch. Johnson was at M&T Bank Stadium for the season opener against Cincinnati.

“He’s a great guy and we just hit it off,” Jones said. “I went to a few of his games and he’s come to our game. We’re definitely going to connect and I’m going to try to help with his charity event.”

The Orioles have been showing their support for the purple and black too. Johnson was joined by Adam Jones, J.J. Hardy, Matt Weiters, Mark Reynolds and more O’s at the Monday Night Football season opener.

Jones, who frequently tweets about the Ravens, was back out on Thursday night, joined by Manager Buck Showalter and former Orioles Cal Ripken Jr. and Brady Anderson. They got a huge ovation from fans when shown on the video boards.

“That was big. I saw Buck up there. I think the world of that team. Love Buck, I call him Coach. … I think he does a great job. They play fundamentally sound baseball,” Harbaugh said.

“This is a special team. How many close games have they won this year? I think they set a record, right? One-run games, extra-inning games, finding a way to win? It’s something that we can look at as a team, too, and say, ‘That’s what we did a little bit last night. You find a way to win games.’ They are welcome anytime. They can come out to practice anytime. They are a little busy right now, they need to focus on what they are doing.”

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