Today in Owings Mills, we’re reminded why the Ravens are beloved in this town and why the Orioles are trusted as much as a fox guarding a hen house.
The Orioles not only don’t have a pre-season or post-season “open” gathering like the one the Ravens are having, the Orioles wouldn’t even think about opening themselves to that kind of scrutiny and overview. In fact, just me writing this today and reminding everyone of how afraid they are of the media will go in my “file” over there and serve as another point on my record with them.
Don’t think they behave like that? Wait until the press credentials get distributed in March and see who doesn’t get one.
For those of you who don’t think it’s a big deal that the Orioles don’t allow for open media give-and-take — “Ahhh, there they go again at ‘NST, taking a leak on the Orioles” — just ask yourself to answer this question honestly:
“Shouldn’t the Orioles allow the Baltimore media to ask them questions about the decisions they make in running the organization that is funded nearly entirely by the community itself?”
If you’re a neanderthal who doesn’t understand the concept of accountability, you’ll come up with some flimsy excuse to support the notion that “the Orioles are a private business, they can do whatever they want.”
If you understand how the real world works — and, more importantly, the role of a sports team in the community — you’ll simply say, “You’re damn right the media should be allowed to ask the Orioles questions…on MY behalf.”
It’s the natural checks-and-balances that comes with making a profit off of the community. Steve Bisciotti gets it. The Ravens understand it. That’s why John Harbaugh faces the media three times a week during the season. That’s why Ozzie sits down today to review their season with everyone and that’s why he’ll do the same thing prior to the draft in May and give folks the chance to ask their questions. Bisciotti certainly doesn’t NEED to do this today. He could playing golf at his place in Florida this afternoon. But he also understands it comes with the territory of owning the team.
The Ravens have always been accountable.
The only way the Orioles would embrace accountability would be if it hit .232, was coming off a shoulder injury, and would sign for $600,000 a season.
One more time for emphasis, remember this fact: Dan Duquette hasn’t once had an open press conference – in a room – where all of the media members in Baltimore can gather to ask him questions about the baseball organization he runs. Not once.
That, by the way, may not be Duquette’s fault, in the same way it’s not Showalter’s fault he doesn’t have open sit-downs with the media.
The Orioles higher-ups are afraid to let the media question them, and they simply pass that fear on to the folks who work in the Warehouse.
The Ravens, though, aren’t afraid.
Always have been.
Always will be.
If only the baseball team had the same guts.