Lots of errors to go around with regard to Brooks statue

October 24, 2011 | Drew Forrester

We at WNST should just walk around with red flags in our back pockets.

They’d be used for “community challenges”.

It seems we’re the only ones who use them, but I guess that’s what we’re here for…Lord knows very few others in town are willing to challenge anyone.

The latest case for red-flag use came this weekend when the Brooks Robinson statue was unveiled across the street from the baseball stadium, in front of Pickles, a popular pre-game destination for Yankees and Red Sox fans when their teams are in town.

By now I’m sure you know the basic details.  Baltimore businessman Henry Rosenberg was the mastermind of the idea and he oversaw the financing and the hiring of the sculptor and all that jazz.  Rosenberg told members of the media over the weekend that the Orioles “weren’t overly enthusiastic” about the idea.


Because it wasn’t THEIR idea.

We all know how that goes.

But then, something interesting happened.

Some people around town started reporting that it actually WAS the Orioles who put together the great ceremony on Saturday. That’s an easy mistake to make, frankly, since you would have to assume – if you were the person putting together the story for a local TV station or writing the headine at the newspaper – the Orioles WERE involved.  After all, it’s Brooks Robinson.  The Orioles wouldn’t miss out on a chance to honor him, right?  Especially after someone like Rosenberg – who was a longtime financial contributor to Orioles baseball in the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s as part of his duties with Crown Petroleum – went to such great lengths to get this project started and completed.

But the Orioles weren’t involved.

No one from the team was there.  No Buck Showalter.  No member of the Angelos family.  Not even Jim Palmer or longtime broadcaster and close friend Tom Davis.  That would have been a great time to hand out some old bobbleheads or t-shirts or any other kind of team related merchandise.  Just a “thanks for coming” from the club, basically.

But the whole “Orioles didn’t help out” story isn’t really what aggravated me.

What bothered me more than anything is that no one else in town seems to care they weren’t involved.  Stan Charles actually took a shot at them…I will recognize him for that.  But other than WNST and Stan Charles, no one seemed overly concerned with this colossal snub of the greatest 3rd baseman to ever play the game.

No one at The Sun blasted the Orioles for the lack of participation.

None of the TV folks jabbed them.

The folks over at 105.7 wouldn’t DARE crack the whip, for fear they might lose their “FM partner” status and not be allowed to have players on the air during the season.

There’s absolutely no chance WBAL will question them on it.  There’s a better chance of the Orioles making the playoffs next year then to have one of the folks at the flagship station go off on them for their lack of participation in the ceremony.

Jerry Coleman probably would have beat them up had he not been summarily dismissed at The Fan two weeks ago.

There’s no one around to call the Orioles out.  Just us, at WNST.

And that’s why they do what they do.

And — that’s why I’ll throw yet another challenge flag at these imposters in town who are afraid to challenge the Orioles and their management.

Until The Sun says, “Please tell us why you weren’t there today so we can write an article grilling you for it”, they’ll just continue to ignore their obligations.  Until the folks at WBAL and The Fan decide to man-up and challenge them, they’ll just do whatever they want.

The Sun did have a quote from an Orioles representative who chimed in about how much the club loves Brooks and they’ll never be able to repay him for all that he did and a bunch of other word-smithy stuff that made it appear as if the Orioles DID care about Saturday’s event.  I guess that’s why no one from team management was there.  And maybe that’s why Jim Palmer was on the golf course in Florida somewhere instead of speaking to the folks who gathered for the unveiling.  And Buck Showalter wasn’t there, either.  He manages the team, in case you no longer follow the club.

This lack of challenge is precisely what’s wrong with our entire country these days, let alone this situation in town involving the Orioles.  Our country is dilapidated right now because no one can challenge the system.  We’re just now – 15 years after big business started to ruin the nation – starting to challenge the status quo with grass roots efforts like Occupy Wall Street and other forms of protest and even those efforts are met with cries of “sit down and shut up, you don’t know what you’re talking about!”  If you’re a Democrat, you hate anything the Republicans stand for, even if it’s right.  And if you’re a Republican, you hate anything the Democrats stand for, even if it’s right.  I love when someone poses a legitimate question to our state government and you hear this:  “Maryland is a democratic state — you’re never going to change that.”  Right, because the Democrats are doing a real bang-up job in the “Free State”.

So everywhere we turn, people are afraid to challenge anyone.  If you challenge our government, you’re told, “Be thankful for what you have” even though, in nearly every single case, none of us “have anything” remotely close to what the politicians have.  They have better-everything than we do.  If you challenge our politicans, they respond with “you voted me in” (which is why I haven’t voted in 20 years…because I find them all to be charlatans).

And no one can challenge the Orioles.

Or, at the very least, they’re just afraid to challenge them.

It’s the worst kept secret in town.  The Orioles just do whatever they want and nearly everyone turns a blind eye.

FACT:  The Orioles were NOT involved in the Brooks Robinson statue ceremony on Saturday.

FACT:  That’s a damn shame.

FACT:  The statue was NOT erected at Camden Yards.  No, no, no.  There are four lanes of roads that separate the statue from the stadium property.  To say it was erected AT Camden Yards would be indicating that it sits on the property of the baseball stadium.  That’s a factual inaccuracy.  It’s NOT erected at Camden Yards because the Orioles didn’t approve of it being situated there.

FACT:  Very few people in town cared to question the Orioles on the whole thing.

OPINION:  That’s one of the reasons why the team and the organization is in the shape it’s in.

FACT AND OPINION:  We have some lame people in this town.