Tag Archive | "Baltimore"

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Guilmet brings fresh arm to Orioles bullpen

Posted on 10 July 2014 by WNST Staff

PRESS RELEASE

The Orioles announced Thursday that they have recalled RHP PRESTON GUILMET from Triple-A Norfolk and optioned RHP BUD NORRIS to Double-A Bowie.

Guilmet, 26, has posted a 5.79 ERA (9.1IP, 6ER) in nine games with the Orioles this season, striking out 11 and walking two.

Norris, 29, has gone 7-6 with a 3.96 ERA (91.0IP, 40ER) in 15 starts for the Orioles this season.

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Orioles send Norris to Double-A Bowie for work over All-Star break

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Orioles send Norris to Double-A Bowie for work over All-Star break

Posted on 10 July 2014 by Luke Jones

BALTIMORE — Having a desire to not only add an extra arm for a taxed bullpen prior to the All-Star break but to get extra work for starting pitcher Bud Norris, the Orioles optioned the right-hander to Double-A Bowie.

Right-handed pitcher Preston Guilmet was recalled from Triple-A Norfolk to take Norris’ place prior to Thursday’s game against the Washington Nationals. Norris struggled in his return from the disabled list on Wednesday, allowing five earned runs in four innings in a 6-2 loss that was his shortest outing of the season.

The Orioles chose not to send Norris on a rehab assignment prior to activating him — he threw a simulated game in Boston last weekend — and he hadn’t pitched in 17 days since leaving his June 20 start with a groin strain that landed him on the DL. The original plan was for Norris to make two starts before the break until Tuesday’s game in Washington was postponed due to rain.

Manager Buck Showalter mentioned the possibility of Norris pitching in relief on Sunday before the transaction was made, but the 29-year-old was looking at a minimum of eight days between starts even if the Orioles had put him at the top of the rotation to begin the second half.

“That’s something we’d like to stay away from,” said Showalter about Norris having another long layoff. “He’s already had his All-Star break.”

Norris is expected to make a start for the Baysox early next week and would be eligible to return from his option assignment as early as June 20, the final day of the three-game set against the Oakland Athletics.

The Orioles have manipulated their roster over the All-Star break before, optioning Chris Tillman to the minors over the break in 2012 and summoning him when he was eligible in the second half.

Norris has been regarded by most as the club’s best starting pitcher in the first half, going 7-6 with a 3.96 ERA in 15 starts.

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Former Ravens center Birk named NFL director of football development

Posted on 10 July 2014 by WNST Staff

PRESS RELEASE

Former Minnesota Vikings and Baltimore Ravens center MATT BIRK has been named director of football development, the National Football League announced today.

Birk, a six-time Pro Bowl selection, was a standout center for the Vikings and Ravens from 1998-2012, concluding his career by helping Baltimore to a victory in Super Bowl XLVII. He spent the 2013 season working as an NFL-NFLPA appeals officer.

In his new role, Birk will assist in developing the game at all levels of the sport, from players to coaches to front office personnel. He will also assist in the administration of NFL game day operations.

Birk will guide the continued evolution of the Scouting Combine and Regional Combines as well as the annual all-star games for aspiring NFL players, such as the Senior Bowl and East-West Shrine Game.

“I’m very excited to begin this next chapter of my football career,” says Birk, who becomes the eighth former player to take a job at the NFL office, joining Merton Hanks, Dwight Hollier, Patrick Kerney, James Thrash, David Tyree, Troy Vincent and Charles Way. “It’s a real honor for me to be entrusted with developing the game in so many different ways.”

A native of St. Paul, Minnesota, Birk will play a leading role in the continuing evolution and emergence of the Career Development Symposium, oversee the Bill Walsh Minority Coaching Fellowship program and NFL-NCAA Future Football Coaches Academy initiative.

“Matt’s experience as a terrific NFL player, a model citizen in his community and a reputation as a forward-thinking leader make him ideally suited for this role,” said NFL Executive Vice President of Football Operations TROY VINCENT. “There is no doubt he will continue to make a positive impact on our game and be a trusted advocate for those who play and coach at every level.”

Birk, who will also serve as a liaison for the Football Operations department on the international development of the game and assist in further strengthening the NFL High School Player Development program, will be based at NFL headquarters in New York.

A graduate of Harvard University with a degree in economics, Birk was the recipient of the 2011 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year award for his excellence on and off the field, including his commitment to emphasizing the importance of education through his H.I.K.E. Foundation (hope, inspiration, knowledge and education).

Birk and his wife, Adrianna, are the parents of six children.

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Baltimore again among top rated viewing markets for Brazil/Germany match

Posted on 09 July 2014 by WNST Staff

Highest-Rated Non-U.S. World Cup Match Ever on ESPN/ESPN2

ESPN’s telecast of Tuesday’s Brazil vs. Germany FIFA World Cup semifinal match – a 7-1 German victory and Brazil’s first loss in a competitive home match in 63 games (since 1975) – ranks as the highest-rated and most-viewed World Cup semifinal match ever on any U.S. network, according to Nielsen. Brazil-Germany averaged a 4.2 US household rating and 6,643,000 viewers, based on fast nationals. ESPN’s television coverage peaked in the final half hour of the match (5:30–6 p.m. ET) with a 4.6 rating and 7.5 million viewers.

The previous best World Cup semifinal was a 3.4 rating (5,850,000 viewers) for Germany-Italy on ESPN during World Cup 2006 in Germany. Yesterday’s match also represents increases of 56 percent (2.7 rating) and 58 percent (4,204,000 viewers) over the comparable Uruguay-Netherlands semifinal four years ago in South Africa.

Excluding U.S. team matches, Brazil-Germany is the highest-rated World Cup match ever on ESPN/ESPN2, surpassing the 4.0 rating for Mexico-Netherlands (6,571,000 viewers) from the Round of 16 (June 29).

Top 10 markets for Brazil-Germany: New York (7.5), Hartford/New Haven (6.4), Washington, DC (5.8), San Francisco (5.8), Miami/Ft. Lauderdale (5.6), Boston (5.5), West Palm Beach (5.5), Los Angeles (5.0), Baltimore (4.9) and Richmond/Petersburg (4.8)

To date, the highest-rated markets on the ESPN networks are: Washington, DC (4.6), New York (4.3), San Francisco (4.1), Los Angeles (3.7), San Diego (3.7), Hartford/New Haven (3.6), Orlando (3.5), Miami/Ft. Lauderdale (3.5), Richmond/Petersburg (3.4) and West Palm Beach (3.3)

Significant TV Viewership Increases Over 2010 and 2006

Through 61 matches of the 2014 FIFA World Cup, ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC are averaging 4,233,000 viewers and a 2.6 US household rating per match. The 2014 audience marks increases of 43 percent (vs. 2,967,000 in 2010) and 107 percent (2,042,000 in 2006) in viewers, and 37 percent (vs. 1.9 in 2010) and 86 percent (1.4 in 2006) in ratings. (Note: Ratings and viewership numbers are based on the specific match windows, not including pre-match studio coverage.)

ESPN Digital establishes new highs for World Cup semifinal match

2.1 million unique viewers watched the Brazil vs. Germany semifinal on WatchESPN for a total of nearly 90 million minutes, the highest numbers ever for a non-U.S. team soccer match, providing a 10 percent lift to ESPN’s English-language television viewership.

ESPNFC.com had 9.8 million video starts, up more than 2,000 percent over the comparable day for World Cup 2010 and the best ever mark for that platform. Also, ESPN’s SportsCenter app had 3.6 million unique users, a 484 percent gain from the comparable day in 2010.

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Jones named to American League team for Home Run Derby

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Jones named to American League team for Home Run Derby

Posted on 08 July 2014 by Luke Jones

Two days after being named to his fourth All-Star team, Orioles center fielder Adam Jones has decided to take part in the 2014 Home Run Derby at Target Field in Minnesota.

Manager Buck Showalter told reporters prior to Tuesday’s game against the Washington Nationals that the 28-year-old asked for permission to take part in the exhibition. Teammate Nelson Cruz declined an invitation to participate in the derby despite leading the major leagues with 28 home runs entering Tuesday.

Jones is tied for 12th in the American League with his 16 homers and is currently on pace to finish the 2014 season with 29, which would be four shy of his career high a season ago. He was selected to this year’s All-Star Game along with Cruz and injured catcher Matt Wieters.

The Orioles will be sending a representative to the power-hitting competition for the second straight year after Chris Davis participated at Citi Field in New York last season. Over the years, critics have pointed to the derby’s negative impact on hitters as Davis hit only 16 home runs in the second half last year after entering the Midsummer Classic with 37 homers in his first 95 games of the 2013 season.

Jones will try to become the third Orioles hitter to win the Home Run Derby after Cal Ripken won in 1991 and Miguel Tejada was victorious in 2004. Other Baltimore players to take part in the competition include Eddie Murray, Brady Anderson, B.J. Surhoff, and Rafael Palmeiro.

The 2014 Home Run Derby will take place on Monday night. The American League squad will be comprised of captain Jose Bautista, Yoenis Cespedes, Brian Dozier, and Jones, and another player to be named on Thursday. The National League team includes captain Troy Tulowitzki, Yasiel Puig, Giancarlo Stanton, and Todd Frazier. One more player will be named to each side on Thursday.

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DePaula designated by Birds to make room for returning Norris

Posted on 08 July 2014 by WNST Staff

Orioles reinstate RHP Bud Norris from the 15-day disabled list; RHP Julio DePaula designated for assignment 

The Orioles today announced that they have reinstated RHP BUD NORRIS from the 15-day DL and designated RHP JULIO DePAULA for assignment.

Norris, 29, was placed on the disabled list, retroactive to June 22, with a right groin strain. He has gone 7-5 with a 3.62 ERA (87.0IP, 35ER) in 14 starts for the Orioles this season.

DePaula, 31, had his contract selected yesterday and did not pitch in last night’s game. He has not allowed a run in three appearances with Double-A Bowie (6.1IP, 3H, 3BB, 8K) after being signed by the Orioles organization on June 27 from the independent York Revolution.

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D&L Window Tinting Morning Reaction Orioles 9-Game Scorecard (Games 81-89)

Posted on 08 July 2014 by Luke Jones

During the 2014 season, Drew Forrester and Luke Jones of The D&L Window Tinting Morning Reaction will provide the “9-Game Scorecard” for the Orioles, evaluating the club in nine-game increments in a number of categories and looking ahead to how Baltimore will fare over the next nine games on the schedule.

To hear the full explanation of the most recent “Orioles 9-Game Scorecard” during Tuesday’s show, click HERE.

1. Should the Orioles have been better or worse than their 7-2 mark?
Drew: Worse
Luke: Better

2. Most Valuable Player/Least Valuable Player
Drew: MVP – Nelson Cruz; LVP – Chris Davis
Luke: MVP – Adam Jones; LVP – Brian Matusz

3. Biggest surprise
Drew: The Orioles going 4-1 during the Manny Machado suspension
Luke: The struggling Chris Davis falling below the Mendoza line

4. Best thing about the nine-game stretch
Drew: The Orioles bats coming alive during the end of the last homestand
Luke: Winning the series finale in Boston despite squandering a 6-1 lead

5. Nine games from now…
Drew: The Orioles will be ahead by five games in the American League East
Luke: A limited platoon surfaces with Chris Davis losing some at-bats to Steve Pearce and Delmon Young

6. Record in the next nine games (three with Washington, three with the New York Yankees, three at Oakland)
Drew: 9-0
Luke: 6-3

7. Stock rising/falling over the next nine games
Drew: Rising – Miguel Gonzalez; Falling – Ubaldo Jimenez
Luke: Rising – Manny Machado; Falling – Steve Pearce

8. Grading Buck Showalter in games 81-89
Drew: A
Luke: B+

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Ravens announce open practice with 49ers August 8 at stadium

Posted on 08 July 2014 by WNST Staff

RAVENS AND 49ERS TO PRACTICE AT M&T BANK STADIUM

The Baltimore Ravens will practice against the San Francisco 49ers at M&T Bank Stadium on Friday, Aug. 8, one day after the teams compete in their first preseason game. The practice, which is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m., is free and open to the public.

(Due to the Orioles’ game at Camden Yards that evening, there will be no player autograph session following the Ravens-49ers’ practice.)

The Baltimore-San Francisco practice is one of three free and open stadium events the Ravens will hold during their 2014 training camp. The Ravens will also practice at M&T Bank Stadium on Monday, July 28, a session highlighted by post-practice player autographs for children and a fireworks/laser show. The Ravens will then practice at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis on Monday, Aug. 4.

The Ravens and 49ers will hold four joint practices (Aug. 8-11) after their preseason contest (Aug. 7, 7:30 p.m.kickoff). The three sessions following the Friday M&T Bank Stadium practice will take place at the Under Armour Performance Center in Owings Mills.

 

STADIUM TRAINING CAMP FAMILY PRACTICES

Event: Fireworks Night at M&T Bank Stadium (Baltimore, MD) – Free and Open to the Public

When: Monday, July 28

Practice Start Time: 7 p.m.

Gates Open: 5:30 p.m.

Parking: Stadium lots open at 4 p.m. and are available for cold tailgating. The parking fee is $10.

Details: Highlighted by a post-practice player autograph session for children and a fireworks/laser show, theFireworks Night practice will also feature entertainment that includes Baltimore’s Marching Ravens, cheerleaders, official mascot Poe and live mascots Rise and Conquer. The Ravens Team Store and concession stands will also be open.

 

 

Event: Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium Practice (Annapolis, MD) – Free and Open to the Public

When: Monday, Aug. 4

Practice Start Time: 7 p.m.

Gates Open: 5:30 p.m.

Parking: Lots open at 4 p.m. and are available for cold tailgating.

  • ·     $10 for cars and $25 for buses
  • ·     Parking may be purchased via www.navysports.com
  • ·     If Navy lots become full, nearby off-site locations are available with stadium shuttles.

Details: Baltimore’s Marching Ravens, cheerleaders, official mascot Poe and live mascots Rise and Conquer will be in attendance. The Ravens Team Store will be on site, and concession stands will be open. Prior to practice, the Ravens will host a RISE youth football clinic on the field featuring area players and teams.

 

Event: Ravens-49ers Practice at M&T Bank Stadium (Baltimore, MD) – Free and Open to the Public

When: Friday, Aug. 8

Practice Start Time: 1 p.m.

Gates Open: 12 p.m.

Parking: Stadium lots open at 11 a.m. The parking fee is $10.

Details: The practice will feature entertainment that includes the Baltimore Marching Ravens Pep Band, cheerleaders, official mascot Poe and live mascots Rise and Conquer. The Ravens Team Store and concession stands will also be open.

 

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Orioles promote Double-A pitcher DePaula, option Gausman to Norfolk

Posted on 07 July 2014 by Luke Jones

The Orioles needed bullpen help after Sunday’s 12-inning win in Boston and selected the contract of Double-A Bowie pitcher Julio DePaula prior to their series opener against the Washington Nationals.

The 31-year-old right-hander was signed from the independent York Revolution last month and has pitched 6 1/3 scoreless innings with the Baysox. His only previous experience in the majors came in 2007 when he posted an 8.55 ERA in 16 appearances with the Minnesota Twins.

As expected, right-handed pitcher Kevin Gausman was optioned to Triple-A Norfolk to make room on the 25-man roster. The Orioles will need to activate starting pitcher Bud Norris from the disabled list on Tuesday, meaning DePaula’s stay in the majors could be brief.

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Gausman’s rotation spot must be solidified after All-Star break

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Gausman’s rotation spot must be solidified after All-Star break

Posted on 07 July 2014 by Luke Jones

If the Orioles really wanted to have a sense of humor, they’d offer a Kevin Gausman yo-yo giveaway night at Camden Yards in the second half of the season.

Monday brought the expected news of the 23-year-old right-hander being optioned yet again to Triple-A Norfolk to make room for former York Revolution relief pitcher Julio DePaula, who provided manager Buck Showalter with an extra arm in the bullpen after Sunday’s 12-inning win in Boston. The 31-year-old DePaula figures to only be with the Orioles for one game with Bud Norris set to be activated from the disabled list for Tuesday’s start against the Washington Nationals.

Yes, Gausman has options and the Orioles needed an extra arm in the bullpen, making him a logical choice to be sent to the minors to create an open spot on the 25-man roster. With next week’s All-Star break looming, the argument could be made that the 2012 first-round pick could only miss one start before returning in the second half of the season.

But is the constant yo-yoing of the young pitcher between Baltimore and the minors what’s best for him and the Orioles? Shuffling the deck with the likes of T.J. McFarland, Brad Brach, and Evan Meek is one thing — executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette has manipulated his roster as much as anyone over the last three years — but continuing to mess with the rhythm of your top pitching prospect wouldn’t appear to be the best way to maximize your investment.

Showalter often quips that you can’t mess up the good ones no matter how much you try, but starting pitchers are also creatures of habit. Gausman has only gotten used to a routine of unpredictability and travel over the last month as he’s been optioned twice, was called up to serve as the 26th man for a doubleheader on June 27, and has pitched for the Orioles, Triple-A Norfolk, and short-season Single-A Aberdeen over that stretch.

The Orioles say there is another reason why they’ve handled the young pitcher in the manner they have this season, but even that excuse will no longer be valid after the All-Star break.

“I think every time he goes out [to pitch], it’s good for him,” Showalter said after Sunday’s 7-6 win over the Red Sox. “We’re managing his innings so — at some point — he’s good enough and we’re good enough to pitch the rest of the season. There’s a method to what we’re doing here. We’re trying to make sure a guy like him is available the whole year.”

In 2013, Gausman pitched 129 2/3 innings split between the Orioles and the minor leagues, putting him in line to throw somewhere in the neighborhood of at least 150 to 160 innings this season. He’s pitched 78 2/3 innings so far in 2014, leaving him on track to easily be able to handle a full workload as a starter in the second half.

But the excuses appear to be running out as even Hall of Fame pitcher and MASN analyst Jim Palmer recently took the organization to task over how Gausman has been handled despite pitching to a 2.45 ERA in his five starts since June 7. Showalter made a point during the club’s last homestand that he didn’t want to send Gausman to the hill on abbreviated rest, but the right-hander has twice been recalled to make starts on three days’ rest this season, albeit following what were abbreviated outings each time.

The Orioles gave Gausman infrequent work out of the bullpen for a large stretch of his rookie season instead of allowing him to work every fifth day on his secondary pitches at Norfolk.

Showalter may quip that you can’t prevent the best prospects from reaching their full potential, but the Orioles have put on a clinic in trying to do just that with Gausman over the last calendar year.

The young pitcher’s upside — and performance over the last month — has made his inclusion in the rotation a no-brainer despite the lingering headache of what to do to make room for him. Yes, the Orioles have the ability to move him on and off the roster as needed, but that doesn’t mean they should continue doing it if they want to see him thrive in the majors — and help them advance to the playoffs for the second time in three years.

The Orioles can’t keep Gausman out of the rotation because of a $50 million investment in Ubaldo Jimenez or loyalty to Miguel Gonzalez or Wei-Yin Chen. They need to make it work in allowing their best arm to pitch in the major leagues, regardless of what that means for the rest of the rotation.

Gausman has taken the high road whenever asked about being bounced back and forth between the big club and the minor leagues, but he’s also a human being with emotions who has to be wondering what more he needs to do to stay in the majors. The right-hander could have the impact of a trade-deadline acquisition if the Orioles simply give him a chance to flourish on a regular schedule.

“That’s really not up to me,” Gausman told reporters after Sunday’s outing. “I just try to pitch well when I can and when I get the opportunity to, but I have options and they’re going to use them if they feel like they need it. If we need a bullpen guy, that’s what it’s going to be.”

Next week’s All-Star break provides a final excuse for the Orioles to send Gausman back to Norfolk for one last start or two, but it will be time to solidify his place in the rotation after that — assuming he continues to perform at a level deserving of one.

And it will no longer be good enough to simply say they needed his roster spot if the Orioles truly want Gausman to be a critical part of a second-half run to the postseason.

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