After attending the amazing and memorable Brooks Robinson statue unveiling in front of Pickles Pub on Saturday afternoon my emotions left me two choices – either speak out about the painfully obvious and disgraceful lack of participation by Peter G. Angelos and the Baltimore Orioles or do what the rest of these phonies in the local bought-off media have done: turn a blind eye to the biggest and smelliest orange elephant in the middle of downtown Baltimore and refuse to ask the tough questions.
So today is a day when I again unleash my raging fury regarding this sham on Baltimoreans everywhere perpetrated by the smallest of small men of our time in Maryland – Peter G. Angelos.
There were roughly a thousand hearty Orioles fans and Brooks admirers at the feet of that gorgeous statue this weekend for a man who literally lifted the first shovel in erecting the modern era of professional sports in Baltimore. Brooks Robinson is a walking living legend and civic treasure and one whose inherent goodness and decency has been wasted over the past 20 years by this awful, mean-spirited and petty ownership group and the Angelos ownership reign of terror that has turned its back on this community.
That’s not my feeling. That was the feeling of virtually every participant in Saturday’s festivities who were all asking the same glaring, obvious questions:
1. Why wasn’t this done a long time ago?
2. Why isn’t that statue on the Camden Yards property where the Baltimore Orioles actually play baseball? (Although, I must admit, the notion of Brooks Robinson greeting every person who comes into Baltimore and drives past that stadium on Russell Street is pretty cool. You can make an argument that Angelos’ anti-Brooks stance actually makes the monument even more visible and relevant.)
3. Why hasn’t Brooks Robinson been involved with the Orioles during the September of his days and his life in baseball?
4. Why didn’t the Orioles build a statue for Brooks Robinson long ago?
5. Where was Peter Angelos or any representative or player from the Baltimore Orioles on Saturday? (No Angelos, no Showalter, no players, no orange…the stadium was locked shut and Orioles representatives reportedly were telling fans to call Pickles Pub for more information because they didn’t have any information about the proceedings.)
Let me ask one more serious question and I want you to answer this in your own mind:
Has there EVER been a more beloved Baltimore sports figure than Brooks Robinson?
You can argue for Johnny Unitas — and maybe Cal Ripken or Art Donovan — but Brooks was by far the most personable, likeable and accessible superstar of our lifetime. He also spent an extra two decades coming to life on my living room television with baseball in my life every night, all summer long. His relationship with Crown Central Petroleum was indeed a crowning achievement for both he and Henry Rosenberg, who made sure this statue was built for a man who is so richly deserving of every morsel of the immense praise and outpouring of love he was given by the Orioles diehards on Saturday.
Maybe some of these other gutless (or in some cases, witless and/or from out-of-town) journalists think it’s uncouth to take shots at Angelos after such a glorious fall day for a statue unveiling of the greatest living sports legend in our community but I think the timing is perfect.
These are the occasions when Angelos memorably shows that he’s classless, clueless and petty when it comes to the treatment of his fellow human beings on the planet.
Of all of the sins of Peter Angelos that has led to the decimation of the reputation of the Orioles in our community – and the list is so long that it’s not even worth itemizing or detailing any more – nothing says “I’m an gigantic, collosal a**hole” more than turning your back on someone like Brooks Robinson in the deep autumn of his life as civic treasure.
To publicly ignore Brooks Robinson or to disrespect him is akin to fighting with Mother Teresa, the Dalai Lama or Santa Claus.
It’s unthinkable. It’s unconscionable. And it’s wrong.
But I’ll be the only one pointing out the obvious this week in regard to Brooks, the Orioles and Angelos. And you can tell me what you think in the comments below…that’s why we’re here at WNST.net.
Oh, there was plenty of childlike joy on Saturday of the memories of World Series’ past and plenty of you will say this blog somehow “takes away from a great day for Brooks” but that’s not the point. All of the “great day” parts of the statue unveiling and its eternal charm and beauty at the foot of Russell Street as folks drive into Baltimore and past Camden Yards will long outlive both Brooks Robinson and this dark, ugly era of Orioles baseball that Peter Angelos has profiteered from over the past two decades.
If you want to know how Saturday looked and felt, I covered all of that in this blog and honestly most of you weren’t there for the statue unveiling.
But I think today is a perfect day to examine what’s gone on here with the once-proud Baltimore Orioles and where their place will be in the hearts of this city in the future, especially once Angelos is done raping the community of its spirit for baseball and sports in the summertime downtown.
I don’t really know what Brooks is thinking these days but I know he was left all but broken down, overwhelmed and speechless at the end of the confetti, unveiling and the heartfelt words of his admirers on Saturday.
His health is not good. That much we know. We all pray for No. 5 but his innate happiness and joyful emotions on Saturday seemed to be overflowing and he looked the part of a man who fully realizes that he’s captured and retained the heart of this city for all of his lifetime.
Time will NOT dim the glory of HIS deeds, that’s for sure….
But I know Brooks Robinson deserved better than this from his lifetime of