Orioles August report card

September 01, 2009 | Keith Melchior

The Orioles were reeling out of the All-Star break having won 9 of 25 games going into August. As Ravens training camp bega, the only things keeping fans somewhat interested in the team were names like Tillman and Matusz as people are curious to see the “arms” in action.

Brian Roberts- B+  …He can’t wait until October 1st. Still a very solid player and among league leaders in doubles and runs scored. He is one of the best in the league —-

Adam Jones- B+   …His average dropped aout 20 points in August. He was hurt and missed about a week. Still plays too shallow in CF at times. Lots of balls get over his head -

Nick Markakis – B+  …Probably the best right fielder the Orioles have had since Frank Robinson.—

Melvin Mora – C- Has shown he hasn’t lost his power, but only 6 home runs all season doesn’t get the job done —

Luke Scott – C … slump slump slump..He’s way out of position at 1st base.. Having 20 HR going into August is a bright spot.

Robert Andino - B.. Was a solid performer when he got the chance. With Izturis back and hitting, Andino plays 2 times a week in the Trembley platoon system—

Felix Pie- B  ..  His hard work paid off and he has finally shown he CAN hit and hit for power. His baserunning blunders have to stop though. I am pleased to give him a B this month –

Ty Wigginton- B+ .. He’s been playing 3rd and 1st base and playing pretty well—

Matt Wieters - B ..  He’s been reunited with most of his minor league mates. Doing a good job calling games. He hasn’t been the force many fans hoped he’d be —

Nolan Reimold - A-.. This guy flat out hustles every play. His power numbers have been way off since early July.  That’s how you lose playing time to Felix Pie.  —

Cesar Izturis – B .. Not a #2 hitter but there are no other options with the lack of a power hitter in the cleanup spot -

Various Pitchers;

Jeremy Guthrie- D ..  Still allowing too many home runs.

Koji Uehara - STILL MIA  .. -

Danys Baez - C- .. the new set up man…he sets up the opposition and gives them a chance to win-

Jason Berken -C- .. This kid has guts. He goes out there every 5th day and does his best. He won

Jim Johnson..  B+  .. Has done a good job as closer thus far. -

David Hernandez - C.. His big problem…he can’t consistently get past the 5th inning.

Brian Bass- B …Gives them much needed middle relief when the majority of the starters can’t get into the 6th inning.

Mark Hendrickson – A- .. Has given the team stellar efforts out of the pen. He should be the primary lefty middle man next season. Forget starting him unless in emergencies..

Brian Matusz - B .. He has to learn how to pitch at this level. He hasn’t been as unhittable as he was in the minors, but didn’t he skip the AAA level?

Chris Tillman – C ..  He gets into trouble by allowing the home runs. He needs  to continue learning like Matusz. It’s going to be up and down until the light bulb comes on for these 2 guys. 

Dave Trembley- D .. The Orioles are 24 below .500 and at 54-78,  they are playing .409 baseball going into September. That happens to be the 4th WORST record in the major leagues. Trembley’s record as Oriole manager is 162-223 for a paltry .420.  IF the Orioles decide to bring him back in 2010, they’d better keep him around the whole season. If he is going to go into 2010 with an axe hanging over his head should the team get off to a slow start, then they should at least give the man the respect he is due for being a loyal company man and cut the ties come October 5th.

Overall -  As we get into September, the rosters will expand to 40 and Trembley will probably shut down most of the rookie pitchers because they aren’t used to pitching so many innings. They DO have the entire winter to rest. Are they somehow miraculously going to be able to pitch 175 to 200 innings next season?  Hell, most of them have only averaged 5 innings per start anyway, so what’s the big deal?  I want to know what is going to change next season that will make this team better than it is now.

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