On Wednesday night, Erik Bedard faced the Orioles for the first time since the ball club traded him away in 2008 for 5 players including the likes of Adam Jones, George Sherrill and Chris Tillman.
Bedard pitched 6&2/3 innings allowing only one run and striking out seven batters in route to his fourth win of the season. Despite the success he is having this year, and his performance against the Orioles, there is no reason for anyone to regret trading Bedard away.
Now 30, Bedard compiled a 40-34 record in five seasons with the Birds and recorded a club record 221 strikeouts in the 2007 season. There is no arguing that Bedard put up solid numbers for the Orioles, but trading him was the right move.
Many thought that Bedard could have been the face of the franchise, but his surly personality and desire to seemingly leave Baltimore made his relationship with the fans very rocky.
Bedard won 13 games in 2007, but would have won more had he not seemingly pulled himself after 90-100 pitches in many of his outings. The fact that Bedard has only thrown one complete game is evidence of this.
The main knock on Bedard was the fact that he had no heart and cared only about his individual statistics instead of the success of the Orioles. That kind of attitude does not fly in a blue collar town like Baltimore.
When Andy MacPhail traded him to the Mariners in the 2008 off-season, Erik Bedard made some inappropriate comments about Baltimore and the Orioles, sullying whatever relationship he might have had with the fans.
A year and a half after the Erik Bedard trade everything has come full circle for the Orioles. They have their center fielder of the future and the face of the franchise. They have a closer that was an All-Star last year and has some versatility to pitch in many spots in the bullpen. Most importantly, they have a 21 year old pitcher that is viewed by many to be the best pitching prospect in all of baseball and could one day shatter Bedard’s single season strike out record.
Bedard has a poor relationship with the media and his teammates in Seattle. Since his arrival the once proud Mariners franchise has become one of the worst teams in baseball.
While in Baltimore there is a sense of hope and optimism that has been sparked by the play and personality of Adam Jones.
Years from now when Adam Jones is a superstar and Chris Tillman is the 20- game winner that most believe he will become, Mariners fans will be talking about the Erik Bedard trade in the same way the Orioles still talk about the Glenn Davis trade.
Erik Bedard may have gotten his “revenge” Wednesday night, but the Orioles will have the last laugh.