To the rescue…again

July 23, 2008 | Drew Forrester

Another neat Orioles-related event that few people in town know about takes place tonight at OPACY.

And, as has become my custom this year, I’ll go ahead and do their marketing work for them by letting you in on all of the details.

Back in 1983 – yes, I know the folks at The Warehouse are surprised, but there really WAS baseball in Baltimore back then – the O’s captured the World Series with a 4-1 series win over the Phillies. 25 years have passed since that memorable Fall Classic and, of course, it’s the last World Series Champion (or game) we’ve seen here in Charm City.

One of the rightful criticisms the O’s have faced in recent years centers on their reluctance to embrace and/or promote the great heritage of the Baltimore Orioles. Why they’ve been hesitant to tie into that greatness is anyone’s guess, but it’s been part of their disconnect with the Baltimore baseball fan…acting as if the past isn’t important to anyone.

This year – for some weird reason – they’ve actually listened to people who have been in their ear telling them to get with the program and embrace their history. They celebrated their ’79 World Series team a month or so back (yeah, I know, it’s a strange concept to honor a losing team, but don’t complain…) and, in general, have been much more accepting of their history this season.

Tonight, they’ll honor the ’83 World Series team by bringing a bunch of the players from that roster into Baltimore to celebrate that title once again. I’m not going to go into all of the specifics of the event…I’m helpful to them, but not THAT helpful – especially when I’m doing this out of the goodness of my heart.

Let it be known, though, that tonight at the ballpark, the O’s are reconnecting with their past and honoring our last great baseball champion.

I was very fortunate – through ZERO help from the O’s, by the way – to have two members of that team on with me today during the Comcast Morning Show. Jim Dwyer and Manager Joe Altobelli hopped on with me for a few minutes to talk about ’83 and all of their fond memories. It was nice to visit with them.

Naturally, it would also be nice – and they’d be helping themselves too – if the O’s PR department would assist us (“the great unwashed” — aka, the non-rights-holders) with those kinds of interviews so that the night and the celebration could extend out to every O’s fan in the Baltimore area. That didn’t happen today…we organized the on-air appearance of Dwyer and Altobelli, much to the chagrin of the club’s head PR lackey, I’m told.

Excluded as we’ve been (funny…baseball has a way of “excluding” folks, don’t they?) over the past couple of years, it should once again be noted that WNST has risen above the fray of this petty “you can’t talk with any of our players” edict and we’ve actually gone out of our way to give the ballclub free promotional time just to help the fans know more about this great event tonight.

Make no mistake about it, particularly based on this week’s lousy attendance numbers: The O’s still need all the promotional help they can get. Great ideas and meaningful PR events – like the one tonight – don’t have the impact they should if no one knows about them.

Leave it to us to provide the help, even in the wake of unreturned phone calls, e-mails and text messages over the last 6 months.

Tonight’s celebration of the ’83 title team is a great idea. In fact, it’s a Grand Slam.

Think about how much help we could actually be to the team if they treated us right.

Scary thought, huh?