Baltimore will close 2011 by hosting another divisional foe in the Boston Red Sox, and the rest of the 162-game schedule for next season -- released on Tuesday by Major League Baseball -- presents numerous intriguing matchups as the O's look to build on their end-of-season success in their first full year with manager Buck Showalter at the helm.
Following that initial three-game set, the O's will come back to Baltimore to host the Tigers for April 4's home opener and will also welcome Showalter's former team, the Texas Rangers, into town. The O's travel to the Bronx later in the month to face the Yankees and will be tested early and often by the usual slate of AL East opponents.
Next season's Interleague Play will bring three National League clubs to Camden Yards, with the O's welcoming the Cincinnati Reds on June 24-26 and the St. Louis Cardinals immediately after. The Washington Nationals return for the yearly Battle of the Beltways showdown (May 20-22) with the O's traveling to D.C. to complete the set June 17-19.
The Orioles' National League stops also include trips to Pittsburgh's PNC Park (June 20-22) and the Braves' Turner Field (July 1-3) in what will be Atlanta's first season without legendary manager Bobby Cox.
The West Coast kicks off a tough 10-game road trip in mid-August, when the O's make trips to play Oakland (Aug. 15-17) and Anaheim, before heading north to see the Twins in their second season at Target Field.
Other key dates include a 4th of July game in Arlington to play the Rangers, and a four-game set in Boston's Fenway Park heading into the All-Star break. The O's close out the season with a flurry of AL East opponents in September, completing their 81-game home slate in Baltimore by welcoming the Red Sox on Sept. 26-28.
Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Twitter @britt_ghiroli. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less