As 2013 winds to an end, a look back at the most popular sports stories of the year (determined by your clicks!) is in order. Baltimore has had a pretty busy sports year: the Orioles were competitive in 2013 but didn’t take the step up from ’12 that many expected, many Ravens flew the coop for retirement or other destinations…and oh yeah, they won the Super Bowl.
So, here’s the list. Take a look back at the Baltimore sports fan’s year in sports:
1. Ravens Win The Super Bowl: Ravens Are Super Bowl Champs! Take Close Win Over The 49ers 34-31
This will end up on many local fans’ top 20 lifetime sports lists, but it in fact did happen this year. As the Ravens currently battle for a playoff spot in this year’s campaign, nobody in Baltimore is forgetting the miraculous playoff run that earned Joe Flacco $120 million & sent Ray Lewis into retirement a two-time champion. It started as a blowout turned into a blackout & ended on a goal-line stand that had two brothers shaking hands at mid-field, one going home a winner.
And here’s the Super Bowl photo gallery from the game: Ravens Win Super Bowl XLVII
2. Baltimore Fans Celebrate In The Streets: Rowdy Fans Pack The Streets After Ravens Win The Super Bowl
So it got a little “rowdy”, but it was fun for most as fans packed the streets from Federal Hill to Fells Point & in the surrounding counties to celebrate the Ravens’ championship.
3. Ray Lewis’ Past Revisited: 5 Common Misconceptions About Ray Lewis’ Murder Trial
With Ray’s impeding retirement & back in the national spotlight for another Super Bowl run it was inevitable that his past would be rehashed…again. Detroit blogger Eric Thomas shared this post that garnered lots of different opinions.
4. Harbaugh Brothers Take A Break: John Harbaugh: I Have Not Spoken To My Brother Since The Super Bowl
Sour grapes? Avoiding awkward family get togethers? Or just busy guys? Hard to say, but John’s comments on the Letterman show that he hadn’t talked to his brother since the big game generated a ton of interest.
5. Rolando McClain: Retired Raven Rolando McClain Says He Had Dark Thoughts & ‘Felt Like Aaron Hernandez’
Troubled Raven off-season acquisition (currently on the Ravens’ reserve-retired list), Rolando McClain talked about his issues & said he felt that he could have gone down the same road as Patriot TE Aaron Hernandez.
6. Ray Lewis: Conspiracy Theorist? Former Ravens Linebacker Suggests Super Bowl Blackout Was By Design
Was it a joke? Maybe he was voicing what a certain segment of Ravens fans really felt, but Ray’s comments about the Super Bowl blackout generated a ton of interest.
7. 105.7 The Fan’s Scott Garceau: Harbaugh Should Be Fired
A little tongue-in-cheek analysis & an interesting take on John Harbaugh’s future heading into the Super Bowl from the 105.7 The Fan afternoon host struck some fans as curious…or worse…& they let him know it on social media. Nobody keeps their job forever, right?
8. The Parade: Incredible Turnout & Spirit For Ravens Victory Parade
About 200,000 Ravens fans turned up in downtown Baltimore to celebrate with & congratulate their Super Bowl winning team.
Relive it here in this photo gallery: Ravens Fans Cheer On Super Bowl Champion Ravens In Parade
9. Steelers Coach Mike Tomlin Gets In On The Game: New Video Angle Shows Mike Tomlin Incident, League Considers Punishment
Little did he know that his “stanky leg” act of re-routing a probable kick return TD for Jacoby Jones would cost him 100K & a million Internet memes…and the Steelers lost anyway.
10. Mark Viviano Gets Married: Sports Director Mark Viviano Marries WJZ Exec. Producer Megan Walburn
When WJZ-TV’s Sports Director Mark Viviano got married he chose to share some of his personal life in this photo gallery. Congrats, Mark!
11. Ugly Incident At Camden Yards: Yankees Fan In Critical Condition After Assault At Camden Yards
It could happen anywhere, but it didn’t. It happened here in Baltimore. It’s a dirty mark on a proud sports town.
12. Seven Nation Army: How ‘Seven Nation Army’ Became The Ravens Pump-Up Song…And The 4 Songs They Almost Played Instead
You can hear it at every sporting event in Baltimore, but how did the White Stripes song become the unofficial “Pump Up” song of the Ravens & Baltimore fans? The story is here along with other songs that almost made the cut.
13. Baltimore Grand Prix Canceled Road Block! Grand Prix Will Not Be Back In Baltimore For 2014 & 2015
Some are thrilled & some are disappointed, but the Grand Prix will not be held in Baltimore in 2014 & 2015 and perhaps never again.
14. Boldin Traded: Anquan Boldin Traded To 49ers
Maybe nothing shocked Ravens fans more than the trade of WR Anquan Boldin to the ’49ers for a 6th round pick. A high cap number sent him to San Fran where he is having a fantastic year. In Oz we trust, but this one hurt.
15. Ed Reed Live: Ed Reed Talks AFC Championship, Ray Lewis & Super Bowl LIVE!
The day after the AFC Championship victory over the Patriots that sent the Ravens to the Super Bowl, future Super Bowl winner (and future Texan & Jet & Hall Of Famer) Ed Reed called into to talk to 105.7 The FAN host Glenn Younes about the game, talking to Tom Brady & Ray’s impeding retirement.
16. Prego: Raven Torrey Smith Has World’s Cutest Pregnancy Announcement
Maybe the cutest pregnancy announcement in the history of social media!
17. Twitter Fallout: Arrieta Fires Back
105.7 The FAN host Jeremy Conn stood up for (then) Orioles Pitcher Jake Arrieta after a harmless Tweet created a firestorm on Twitter. (Arrieta was later traded to the Chicago Cubs.)
18. Flacco’s “Loving It”: Joe Flacco Orders McNuggets Meal Hours After Becoming Highest-Paid NFL Player
Baltimore loves its “lunch pail” regular guy football players, and nothing says that more than your Super Bowl MVP QB stopping off to get an Extra Value Meal on his way to cash a $120 million check!
19. Sweet Pea Saga: Baltimore Raven Jacoby Jones Hurt On Party Bus
Jacoby is still scoring TDs, Bryant McKinnie is with the Dolphins & we may never know where Sweet Pea is but this story generated a ton of national interest.
20. An Athlete, An Inspiration: Former Ravens Player O.J. Brigance Finds Purpose Off The Field From ALS Diagnosis
A Baltimore champion with the Ravens & the Stallions, O.J. Brigance is an inspiration to players & fans alike.
Have a happy & safe New Year!