Exsqueeze me?!

May 19, 2010 | John West

Sometimes, when I watch Oriole games, I hear the craziest things.  Usually, its just nonsense or chatter about how close they are to turning the corner.  However, I heard something the other day that turned my head all the way around.

Gary Thorne, who I happen to think is anywhere from pretty good to very good, said the following. (I will try to remember it word for word, and I may not, but the intent will be clear.)  Gary Thorne said, “This Oriole infield may look a lot different in June than it does now.  With Brian Roberts coming back, he will take his usual position at 2nd base.  Ty Wiggington will have to move; probably to 1st base.  With how well Josh Bell is playing now in Norfolk, he could move up to the club and play 3rd.  Miggy could move back to shortstop and replace the weak bat of Caesar Isturez.  So the infield could be Wigginton, Roberts, Tejada and Bell”

Where to begin?  I would like to start with- this season is over. Wins and losses don’t matter and I want all decisions to be based on helping the club out in the future.  If I were a contending team, I would want Miggy and Wigginton.  Especially Wigginton and especially an NL club.  Ty has the chance to be the most sought after player at the trade deadline with his numbers this year, final year of a contract, and his ability to play multiple positions.  If I were in the hunt for a playoff spot, Ty would be the first guy I would want to add.  Miggy would make a decent upgrade for a team who needs a DH or 3rd baseman for the playoff stretch.  Trade them BOTH.  Our top priority cannot be to try to play competitive baseball this season.  Lets face it, that was our priority the entire off-season, in words at least, and look at what that got us…The WORST team in baseball.  Lets take the few good parts, with 1 year left on their contracts, and trade them.

I have seen Miggy play 3rd base all year.  He is a decent 3rd baseman.  Not great, not horrible.  Decent.  With his bat, he isn’t anywhere near the league’s best bat at 3rd, but he is better than Melvin was last year.  I do know he doesn’t look like he can play SS anymore.  I am talking about a potential disaster at SS, defensively.  Let’s avoid this disaster, which could also lead to injury, therefore eliminating his trade value.

I have no problem with Ty Wigginton moving to first base.  I have a problem rushing back Brian Roberts and his hurt back.  I don’t know if or when he will be available to play this year, but whatever the date is, wait another 2 weeks.  This years team has proven that having a high quality lead off hitter is CRITICAL to a teams success.  We need Brian Roberts 100% healthy in March, 2011, not 75% percent healthy in June 2010.  Why don’t I give the Orioles the benefit of the doubt?  They haven’t earned it, with a simple review of how the Brian Roberts injuries have been handled in the last 4 months.  Patience is the wisest choice here.  I am fearful that a rush to get Brian back, so that we can win 67 games this year and not 61 games is freakin’ ridiculous.

I don’t know if Josh Bell is ready to play big league 3rd base.  I think one of the things that should be answered is whether or not he is a switch hitter.  His numbers from the right side of the plate against lefties is something close to a .050 average.  Maybe that ought to be looked at before he faces the likes of a MLB Pitcher.

I don’t mind the home team announcer trying to be upbeat about the home team.  But have just a little bit more respect for me…. PLEASE!