Tag Archive | "Chris Davis"

Davis, Jones, Hardy earn 2013 Silver Slugger Awards

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Davis, Jones, Hardy earn 2013 Silver Slugger Awards

Posted on 06 November 2013 by WNST Staff

PRESS RELEASE

Louisville Slugger tonight announced that 1B CHRIS DAVIS, SS J.J. HARDY and CF ADAM JONES have been awarded the Silver Slugger Award for their 2013 seasons. The three Silver Slugger Awards won by the Orioles are the most of any team in the major leagues in 2013 and are the most by the club since the award began in 1980.

Davis was awarded his first Silver Slugger Award after leading the major leagues with 53 home runs, 138 runs batted in and 96 extra-base hits (42 doubles, one triple and 53 homers). He finished in the top 10 in the AL in slugging percentage (2nd, .634), OPS (2nd, 1.004), runs (T-2nd, 103) and doubles (T-3rd, 42). Davis is the third Orioles first baseman to claim a Silver Slugger Award, joining EDDIE MURRAY (1983-’84) and RAFAEL PALMEIRO (1998).

“Receiving this award is very humbling, as there are some really great hitters that play first base in this league, so it means a lot to me,” said Davis. “Batting in the middle of the order, you want to pose a threat at all times, and I’m grateful that the opposing managers and coaches recognized not only the success that I had, but also the success of the team as well.”

Hardy was tabbed for his first Silver Slugger Award after leading AL shortstops in homers (25) and RBI (76), while finishing second in slugging percentage (.433) and OPS (.738) and fifth in average (.263). He is the third Orioles shortstop to win the Silver Slugger Award, joining CAL RIPKEN, JR. (eight awards, 1983-86, ’89, ’91, ’93-’94) and MIGUEL TEJADA (2004-’05).

“I am really honored to win this award because the coaches and manager’s vote means so much to you as a player,” said Hardy. “They see you quite a bit in the division, but for the guys you only play against a handful of times to notice not only you, but also two of your teammates, that is a good sign for the direction the Orioles are headed. And then to be mentioned in the same sentence as Cal and Miggy as an offensive player, that just leaves me speechless.”

Jones became the first Orioles outfielder to win a Silver Slugger Award as he led AL outfielders in homers (33) and RBI (108) and finished third in doubles (35) and slugging percentage (.493) and sixth in batting average (.285).

“It is a tremendous honor and with all of the great Orioles outfielders of the past, I’m surprised that I am the first to win one,” said Jones. “While it is a great individual honor for all three of us, the ultimate goal is to win games and bring a championship to Baltimore.”

The Orioles have now had 11 different Silver Slugger Award winners and 20 total winners, with DH AUBREY HUFF (2008) the last to receive the award. The 2013 trio joins Huff, Murray, Palmeiro, Ripken, Tejada, CA MICKEY TETTLETON (1989), 2B ROBERTO ALOMAR (1996) and 3B MELVIN MORA (2004) as Orioles recipients.

Silver Slugger Award winners were determined by a vote of Major League Baseball coaches and managers who select the players they felt were the best offensive producers at each position in their respective leagues. Selections were based on a combination of offensive statistics including batting average, on-base percentage, and slugging percentage, as well as the coaches’ and managers’ general impressions of a player’s overall offensive value. Managers and coaches were not allowed to vote for players on their own team.

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Miguel Cabrera beats out Chris Davis for AL Hank Aaron Award

Posted on 28 October 2013 by WNST Staff

Miguel Cabrera, Paul Goldschmidt win the 2013 Hank Aaron Award

Award recognizes most outstanding offensive performer in each league; Cabrera wins second consecutive American League Hank Aaron Award

 

Major League Baseball announced today that Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers and Paul Goldschmidt of the Arizona Diamondbacks have been selected as the winners of the 2013 Hank Aaron Award. This is Cabrera’s second consecutive season winning the Hank Aaron Award for the American League. Established in 1999 to honor the 25th Anniversary of Aaron breaking Babe Ruth’s all-time home run record, the Hank Aaron Award is officially sanctioned by Major League Baseball and recognizes the most outstanding offensive performer in each League.

Fans voted for the award on MLB.com, and for the fourth straight year, a special panel of Hall of Fame players led by Hank Aaron joined fans in voting for the award. The Hall of Fame panel led by Aaron includes some of the greatest offensive players of all-time – Roberto Alomar, Johnny Bench, Tony Gwynn, Paul Molitor, Eddie Murray and Robin Yount. These Hall of Famers – who combined for 17,629 hits, 8,278 RBI and 1,723 home runs – were personally selected by Hank Aaron to lend their expertise to help select the best offensive performer in each League.

“I want to extend my congratulations to Miguel Cabrera and Paul Goldschmidt on being selected as the winners of the 2013 Hank Aaron Award, an award named after one of the greatest players in the history of baseball,” Baseball Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig said. “Miguel completed another stellar season this year, including winning his third batting title. Paul was an offensive force on the Diamondbacks and in the National League.”

“It is a privilege to have the award that recognizes the most outstanding offensive performer in each League named after me,” said Hank Aaron. “I want to congratulate Miguel and Paul on their outstanding seasons and extend my thanks to the Hall of Famers and fans who selected the winners.”

Cabrera followed up his Triple Crown-winning season of 2012 with his third consecutive American League batting title after hitting .348 in 2013. The eight-time All-Star, who was the starting third baseman for the A.L. at the Midsummer Classic, became the first Tigers player to lead the A.L. in hitting in three consecutive seasons since Hall of Famer Ty Cobb accomplished the feat (1917-19). The 30-year-old slugger matched his career best with 44 home runs (also 2012) and collected 137 RBI, marking his sixth straight season of 100-or-more RBI for Detroit and joining Harry Heilmann (1923-29) as the only players in franchise history to do so. The Venezuela native led the A.L. with a .442 on-base percentage, a .636 slugging percentage and a .397 average with runners in scoring position while tying for first with 37 go-ahead RBI. He also ranked among league leaders in homers (2nd), RBI (2nd), total bases (2nd, 353), runs scored (T-2nd, 103), hits (T-2nd, 193), walks (3rd, 90) and multi-hit games (9th, 52). The 2012 A.L. MVP has eclipsed the 100-RBI mark in each of his full Major League seasons and he has hit at least .320 in eight of his last 10 seasons.

Goldschmidt, who was selected to his first All-Star Game in 2013, hit .302 with 36 doubles, 36 home runs, 125 RBI, 99 walks and 103 runs scored in his second full season with the Diamondbacks. The 26-year-old led the National League in slugging percentage (.551), extra-base hits (75), RBI and total bases (332), and tied for first in homers. He also ranked third in walks, tied for third in runs scored, fourth with a .401 on-base percentage and tied for 10th in doubles. Among all Major Leaguers, the right-handed-hitting slugger tied for first in go-ahead RBI (37), go-ahead home runs (20), walk-off homers (3), and home runs after the eighth inning (7), while tying for most game-winning RBI (19) and RBI with runners in scoring position (84). The Texas State University product joined Hall of Famers Mel Ott (1929 and 1932) and Eddie Mathews as the only three N.L. players to post a .300 average, 35 home runs, 100 RBI, 100 runs scored and 99 walks during their 25-year-old season or earlier (ages as of June 30 of that season). In addition, Paul is the 19th player since 1977 to lead the N.L. or tie for the lead in home runs and RBI in a single season. Goldschmidt, who was drafted by the D-backs in the eighth round of the 2009 Draft, became the ninth player in the last 37 years to lead the N.L. or tie for the lead in homers and RBI while hitting at least .300, joining Matt Kemp (2011), Albert Pujols (2010), Ryan Howard (2006), Andres Galarraga (1996), Dante Bichette (1995), Barry Bonds (1993), Hall of Famer Mike Schmidt (1981) and George Foster (1977).

Past winners of the award include: Miguel Cabrera and Buster Posey (2012), Jose Bautista and Matt Kemp (2011), Bautista and Joey Votto (2010); Derek Jeter and Albert Pujols (2009); Aramis Ramirez and Kevin Youkilis (2008); Alex Rodriguez and Prince Fielder (2007); Jeter and Ryan Howard (2006); David Ortiz and Andruw Jones (2005); Manny Ramirez and Barry Bonds (2004); Rodriguez and Pujols (2003); Rodriguez and Bonds (2001-02); Carlos Delgado and Todd Helton.

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Davis named 2013 Most Valuable Oriole

Posted on 29 September 2013 by WNST Staff

Chris Davis named 2013 Most Valuable Oriole 

The Orioles today announced that CHRIS DAVIS has been voted winner of the 2013 Louis M. Hatter Most Valuable Oriole Award by members of the local media who cover the team on a regular basis. He will be recognized for his accomplishments in an on-field ceremony prior to today’s season finale against the Boston Red Sox.

Davis has compiled one of the greatest offensive seasons in major league history. Entering today’s finale, he had a club-record and MLB-leading 53 home runs and 96 extra-base hits on the season. His 138 RBI were most in the majors and fourth-most in Orioles history and his 370 total bases were a new club record. He also ranked in the top three in the American League in slugging percentage (2nd, .634); on-base plus slugging percentage (2nd, 1.003); runs (T-2nd, 103) and doubles (T-3rd, 42). Davis is only the third player in MLB history to hit at least 50 home runs and 40 doubles in a season, joining BABE RUTH (1921) and ALBERT BELLE (1995).

Davis was the top vote-getter in Major League Baseball in All-Star Game voting with over 8.2 million votes, earning his first selection to the Midsummer Classic as the AL starting first baseman. He tied the American League record (REGGIE JACKSON, 1969) with 37 home runs before the All-Star break and became the first player in major league history with 25 doubles and 30 home runs before July 1.

Davis was named American League Player of the Month for April by MLB after batting .348/.442/.728 with eight doubles, nine home runs and 28 RBI in 27 games that month. He also earned two AL Player of the Week selections (April 1-7 and May 27-June 2). He had an MLB-record 16 RBI in his first four games of the season and also homered in each of the year’s first four games, only the fourth player in MLB history to accomplish the feat.

In addition to his accomplishments on the field, Davis was active in the community, making appearances at local Christian Youth Athletics events and donating $100 for each home run he hit to Luke’s Wings, a non-profit military organization dedicated to the support of current and former service members who have been wounded in battle. He also donated $5,000 to bring underprivileged children to Orioles games through the OriolesREACH Gameday Experience Program.

The Most Valuable Oriole Award is named in honor of the late Lou Hatter, a former sportswriter for the Baltimore Sun who covered the Orioles for 27 years. Balloting for the Most Valuable Oriole Award is conducted with voting on a 5-3-1 basis. ADAM JONES also received a first place vote. Jones finished second and MANNY MACHADO finished third. CHRIS TILLMAN also received votes.

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Big week for charity, giveaways, Ravens shows, bus trips and Hooters girls at WNST!

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Big week for charity, giveaways, Ravens shows, bus trips and Hooters girls at WNST!

Posted on 27 August 2013 by WNST Staff

It’s a jam packed week here at WNST, with more chances for you to hang out, mingle, win prizes and meet players than perhaps we’ve ever slammed into a single week before.

THURSDAY NIGHT:

Glenn Clark from “The Reality Check” continues his “Grab a Bud” happy hour series at Hooters in Towson courtesy of Budweiser. Glenn will be rooting the Orioles on against the Red Sox, showing some major support for Towson against UConn and keeping tabs on the Ravens as they visit the Rams. If you stop by Hooters, not only will there be Hooters girls, but you can take advantage of some of their brand new menu additions, including “The Southwestern.”

The WNST.net staff got a taste of this beauty last week. It’s glorious. Everyone who attends Thursday night will be registered to win tickets to see Nick Offerman (Ron Swanson from NBC’s “Parks and Recreation”, who made a hilarious appearance on “The Reality Check” last week that’s worth listening to if you missed it) Sept. 4 or Kenny Loggins Sept. 15 at The Modell Performing Arts Center at The Lyric. Glenn will be giving away tickets on site, so anyone who stops by between 7pm and 8pm will be registered. There will be other great giveaways as well, and rumor has it there are girls at Hooters. Just a rumor.

FRIDAY NIGHT:

As the Grand Prix of Baltimore gets underway downtown (we encourage you to get your tickets now!), WNST has two incredible events lined up. First, we’ll kick off our 2013 Ravens player show series with Super Bowl XLVII champion left tackle Bryant McKinnie at Adams Jeep in Aberdeen. The show gets underway at 7pm. We’ve had a ton of fun with the man known as “Mt. McKinnie” over the years. Sometimes he even gets into song.

If you want pictures and autographs with Bryant Friday night, make sure you go right now to get your ticket. The autograph ticket will cost you just a $15 donation to Living Classrooms Foundation. (ALL proceeds go to the Living Classrooms Foundation.) Get your tickets now, there are a ton of rowdy Ravens fans in Harford County that will be out in full force.

Later Friday night, Glenn Clark and Nestor Aparicio will wander down Route 40 to Exscape Nightclub for a huge orange celebration. Between 8:30 and 10:30, we’ll be rooting on the Birds as they battle the Yankees with a FREE taco bar and $5 Orange Crush Machados. As if that wasn’t enough, every single person who stops by to see us between 8:30 and 10:30 will walk away with a very awesome “Crush Davis” t-shirt courtesy of The Zone Superstore. See a look at the back of the shirt below. Another rumor? There are also girls at Exscape Night Club.

SATURDAY:

Our tradition of taking Baltimore Orioles fans on the road continues, as our Orange Roadtrip to The Bronx to see the Birds battle the Yanks departs White Marsh at 7am. It’s a tremendous chance for you to root on the O’s in an ALDS rematch against a team they’re fighting with again this year for a postseason spot. The trip is just $119 per person and includes the ride up and back, ticket, beer/soda/breakfast/snacks. With an afternoon start, the bus should return at a very reasonable time.

Here’s trip down memory lane to our first ever trip to the new Yankee Stadium…

Keep all of this in mind as you prepare for your Labor Day weekend. It’s going to be a ton of fun throughout Charm City (and beyond) for the WNST crew. Look forward to seeing you around!

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ARoid HOF Plaque

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A-Roid is Special

Posted on 18 August 2013 by Tom Federline

Alex Rodriguez is special in his own mind and to the thousands of nieve Yankee fans that still support him. He is so special, he has been allowed to put his inevitable suspension on hold. He is so special, he is still playing baseball and he is still getting paid. He is so special, MLB is not even going to hear his case until November/December of this year, (after post season). Why is that? The 12 other suspended players accepted their defeat, accepted their guilt. You caught us, suspend us without pay (we don’t need all that ridculous cash anyway), and BTW thank you for enforcing this now. That way we can have a vacation and then return for the playoffs. Review all of the above, as it presents more evidence that professional sports “Is Fixed”.

A-roid, could you just do us all a favor and “Don’t Come Around Here No More” – (Tom Petty). You make me sick. If you never show your face again in Baltimore or at Camden Yards – our city and our experience at the stadium is better for it. Just go away. Don’t even stop by and pick up Brady for one last butt PED injection. You have tarnished the game of baseball. In this Steroid Era (1990-Present), you and the other 70% fellow needle sticking butt buddies, have managed to place doubt whenever excellence is being achieved, i.e. currently the Orioles own Chris Davis.

Chris Davis has offered is two cents on any allegations directed at him by addressing talk about chasing the single season Home Run record. Not verbatum – but here’s the jist – “The only record I’m concerned about is Roger Maris’ 61. The others don’t count.” Those are my sentiments and more than likely the sentiments of all true baseball fans. Hopefully Davis is not pulling a Rafeal Palmeiro. Hopefully he is legit. Hopefully Albert Pujols is legit. Hopefully Bryce Harper and Mike Trout are legit. What are your thoughts? Here’s mine – thanks to Bud Selig, the players union and MLB – they are all guilty. And if they have not tested positive, they are the ones with the good agents, they are the ones paying off the right people at the testing labs. I don’t know what happened with A-roid and his 28 million a year. Maybe Biogenesis got to greedy with A-roids’ name on the list and the buy-off price got to high. That’s why the other 12 had to surrender.

It’s just not right. It’s all fixed, plus one. Meaning – it’s “all fixed” with performance enhancing drugs simply adding salt into baseballs wound. A-Roid is special and pretty and rich. Kinda makes you a little envious of A-roid. It makes me so envious – it makes me gag. Which I almost did, last Sunday. I can tell you one thing, I’m glad I did not have a heavy object in my hand or I would have been out buying a new television this past week.

Last Sunday afternoon – I turned on the PGA golf tournament. Within minutes my stomach started to rumble and become mildly upset. For ten miuntes all I heard were the “commentators” continuously swoon over Tiger Woods and Phil Mikelson. Whose rounds by the way, were long completed and they were on their way home. The golf “groupies” couldn’t accept the fact that competitive golf could still be played without Tigger ” Mr.4-iron” and Phil “how do you like my fake smile?” I digress. Bottom line – golf is off, what else is on? I turned the station to find Detroit vs. the Yankees. Oh joy, Justin Verlander (another potential juicer) vs. A-roid. I was asking for pain at this point.

Here comes A-Roid and his first at bat…. Home Run. RUKM? My stomach has now begun to rumble. There were some boos in the crowd………. prior to his at-bat. All of which, turned to cheers and a standin ovation after the homerun. RUKM? Just wasn’t right, man. More reasons not to respect Yankee fans. At this point I buckled over, while shouting a few choice “unmentionalbles” at the television. And for those who know me – it was quite “juicy”. At this point, I was hoping that was the worst of it. Oh no, MLB and Fox Sports wasn’t convinced I was sick enough. Next they put up a stat – “A-Roid is 1 RBI away from tying Stan Musial.” That was it – dry heaving and piercing pains in the back of my head almost did me in. A-roid and Stan Musial in the same sentence. You just gagged like I did, didn’t you? Just how wrong is that? My take – the Steroid Era boys get their own record book and Wall of Shame.

Enough already. Let’s get positive. Orioles – whoops – that’s a tough one. They are not hitting in the clutch and how about this newsflash? Jimmy JJ Johnson – no more 9th inning! Bench him for 50 games and no pay. Guess what happens? He gets a vacation, he gets to ponder the use of “juicy juice” and he’s back for playoffs. Orioles in the PLAYOFFS? Not at this pace. Not with thier current attitude. They have experienced their second low-point of the season. And no extended high point to off-set the lows. It’s not all Jimmy JJ’s fault. They all are guilty, including Buck-Buck. Where is your “closer by committee”, Buck-Buck? What’s with the all the LOB in scoring position, Buck-Buck? O’s are not going to the Promised Land with current state of affairs.

Summary – no more juicy juice talk please. O’s have an outside shot at making a run. Let’s have fun. Just go away A-ROID and take your other suspected/questionable PED teammate buddies with you: Teixeira, Sabathia, Jeter (oh yeah throw him in there too), Granderson, etc. etc. Yankees go home. Let’s just make it O’s, Red Sux and some team that plays inside in Florida. Fan in need of Orange Kool-aid.

D.I.Y.

Fedman

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Showalter leaving door open for ninth-inning options besides Johnson

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Showalter leaving door open for ninth-inning options besides Johnson

Posted on 16 August 2013 by Luke Jones

(This blog brought to you by Atlantic Remodeling. Visit www.atlanticremodeling.com to learn about their Red Cent Guarantee!)

BALTIMORE — With the Orioles returning home following a deflating three-game sweep at the hands of the Arizona Diamondbacks, the question on everyone’s mind was who would take the ball in the ninth inning for manager Buck Showalter.

Having blown his last three save opportunities to run his total to a league-worst nine for the season, closer Jim Johnson told reporters in the Orioles clubhouse that he remains confident and that Showalter continues to express confidence in him. And while it’s true that the Baltimore manager maintained Friday that Johnson was still the best option on the team, he also provided himself wiggle room to make a change if he feels it to be necessary.

“I think we have a lot of options and he’s one of them,” Showalter said. “We’re lucky to have all those options. Different guys have failure. I know the finality of it and I know the questions should and need to be asked and it’s frustrating for Jimmy and me. I’m frustrated for him. There’s some things we haven’t done in other innings, too, but I understand the finality of that inning.”

Johnson still leads the majors with 39 saves, but the embattled right-hander is just 9-for-16 in one-run saves as many have pointed to the Orioles’ horrendous 56-9 mark when leading after eight innings and an underwhelming 14-21 record in one-run games after going a remarkable 29-9 in contests decided by one run last year. Those ugly realities have led most to the conclusion that the Orioles need to make a change at the closer spot — at least temporarily.

Showalter has repeatedly expressed his confidence in Johnson this year — including when the 30-year-old reliever blew four of five save chances in late May — but that loyalty is now appearing to contradict the ultimate goal of winning enough games to qualify for postseason play. If Showalter is planning a change, it comes as no surprise that he isn’t broadcasting that for both competitive reasons and respect for the 2012 All-Star closer.

Some have suggested even just giving Johnson a mental and physical respite for a number of days to see if that straightens him out for the stretch run, but the club has already tried to do that at a couple points this season, according to Showalter. If the next save opportunity comes Friday or later this weekend or even next week, the Orioles aren’t tipping their hand whether it will once again be Johnson or somebody else trotting to the hill in the ninth inning.

“If we decide to do that, there’s not going to be some big announcement,” Showalter said. “It will be something I’ve talked to people about and you’ll probably know about it when the gate opens. There are a lot of things that have to be done for us to get 27 outs before they score more runs than we do.”

Even Showalter’s biggest supporters have questioned the sanity of continuing to use Johnson in the ninth inning, a reality not lost on the manager as the Orioles start an important nine-game homestand to take them to the final days of August.

He’s very aware that the Orioles have lost some games that they shouldn’t have won, but Showalter’s intense loyalty to his players that is typically viewed as his greatest strength looks much more like a weakness at this point.

“I’m a fan, too. I get frustrated. We’re all fans of the Orioles,” Showalter said. “I’m a fan of the Orioles and I want us to win. If there are adjustments that need to be made along the way, I understand the sense of urgency with 42 games [left]. But I also know we’re still in a position to do what we set out to do this season and we won’t give in.”

No timetable for Adair’s return to club

As the organization did in announced Rick Adair’s personal leave of absence on Friday morning, Showalter remained respectful of his privacy and would not divulge any details about the circumstances with which the pitching coach is dealing.

Bullpen coach Bill Castro will assume the duties of pitching coach while former Orioles left-hander and minor-league instructor Scott McGregor will serve as the interim bullpen coach. Castro has major league experience as a pitching coach after previously serving in that capacity with the Milwaukee Brewers as recently as 2009.

Many reacted to the news by immediately speculating that this was a polite way to dismiss Adair, but the Orioles have been emphatic that the reason for the leave of absence isn’t related to his job performance. We could eventually learn there is more to this story, but it’s also important to remember coaches and players are also human beings with everyday trials just like anyone else.

“We all have some things in our lives we need to take care of that are more important than this, believe it or not,” Showalter said. “We’re just fortunate to be in an organization that is willing to do those things, and we’re fortunate to have people like Billy and Scott that can make it seamless. It has nothing to do with the job Rick is doing. Rick’s been doing a good job. Just some challenges we all have that we need to take some time and take care of.”

Showalter held a team meeting Friday afternoon to inform them of the shuffling along the coaching ranks and to address any rumors that might hear about Adair’s absence. Castro met with Orioles pitchers individually prior to the series opener against Colorado.

Gausman dealing with arm soreness

After top pitching prospect Dylan Bundy underwent Tommy John surgery earlier in the season, the last thing Orioles fans wanted to hear Friday was that 2012 first-round pick Kevin Gausman was skipped in the Triple-A Norfolk rotation with some soreness in his right arm.

Showalter made it clear that this isn’t considered to be anything serious, but the club also presented a similar prognosis when Bundy first complained of forearm discomfort. Of course, pitchers frequently deal with sore or tired arms and it doesn’t mean Gausman is facing any type of long-term issue at this time, but it will be something the Orioles will monitor for the time being.

“He feels good. He’s not happy about not pitching, but just had a little soreness,” Showalter said. “[It will] probably be the last time he ever tells us about it. That’s usually how it goes. They don’t seem alarmed about it. There was some give and take about whether they were even going to do it.”

The good news is that Showalter acknowledged the extra rest would benefit Gausman in terms of his workload and referred to the likely scenario of Gausman helping out the major league club in September and beyond.

Gausman last pitched on Aug. 8 when he allowed two earned runs in five innings of work for the Tides.

Changing it up

For the second time over the last week, Showalter flipped first baseman Chris Davis and right fielder Nick Markakis in the batting order as Davis was hitting third and Markakis fifth in Friday’s lineup against the Colorado Rockies.

Showalter admitted there were a variety of reasons for making the change, ranging from a desire to get Davis more at-bats to simply wanting to shake things up in hopes of jump-starting the offense. With both Davis and Markakis swinging from the left side, the change keeps the lineup in order in terms of making it difficult for a bullpen to match up in the late innings as Showalter frequently alternates right-handers and left-handers.

“Nick doesn’t care if he hits ninth, first, second, third, twelfth. He would probably have a problem with hitting twelfth,” Showalter quipped. “It’s just something we feel like is a good approach for today. We’ll see where it takes us.”

While Davis is in the midst of an MVP-caliber year, Markakis’ .282 batting average, .335 on-base percentage, and .372 slugging percentage are all career lows, making an easy argument against the right fielder remaining in the No. 3 slot in the lineup. It will also be interesting to see what it means for Davis with Adam Jones hitting directly behind him in the order compared to either Matt Wieters or J.J. Hardy as we’ve seen for most of the season.

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Bovada gives Chris Davis 5/1 odds to win AL MVP

Posted on 06 August 2013 by WNST Staff

Courtesy of Bovada, (www.Bovada.lv, Twitter: @BovadaLV).

 

SPECIALS – Will Alex Rodriguez play for the Yankees in the 2015 Regular Season?       

Yes                  EVEN   (1/1)

No                    -140      (5/7)

 

SPECIALS – Will Alex Rodriguez have his 211 game suspension reduced upon appeal?     

Yes                   -200     (1/2)

No                    +150     (3/2)

 

Odds to win the 2013 AL MVP   

Miguel Cabrera (DET)                1/5

Chris Davis (BAL)                      5/1

Mike Trout (LAA)                        5/1

 

Odds to win the 2013 NL MVP   

Andrew McCutchen (PIT)            5/7

Joey Votto (CIN)                       3/2

Paul Goldschmidt (ARI)             5/1

Carlos Gomez (MIL)                   15/1

 

Odds to win the 2013 AL Cy Young        

Max Scherzer (DET)                   4/7

Felix Hernandez (SEA)               2/1

Yu Darvish (TEX)                       9/1

Bartolo Colon (OAK)                  15/1

Justin Masterson (CLE)              20/1

Matt Moore (TB)                        25/1

Hiwashi Iwakuma (SEA)             25/1

Hiroki Kuroda (NYY)                  33/1

Joe Nathan (TEX)                      33/1

Mariano Rivera (NYY)                33/1

 

Odds to win the 2013 NL Cy Young        

Clayton Kershaw (LAD)              2/3

Adam Wainwright (STL)              4/1

Matt Harvey (NYM)                    7/1

Patrick Corbin (ARI)                   10/1

Craig Kimbrel (ATL)                   10/1

Francisco Liriano (PIT)               12/1

Jordan Zimmerman (WAS)         20/1

Jeff Locke (PIT)                        20/1

Madison Bumgarner (SF)           25/1

Mike Minor (ATL)                       33/1

 

Odds to Win the 2013 AL Rookie of the Year       

Wil Myers                                  1/3

Any Other Player                       2/1

 

Odds to Win the 2013 NL Rookie of the Year       

Yasiel Puig (LAD)                      4/7

Jose Fernandez (MIA)                3/1

Shelby Miller (STL)                    3/1

Julio Teheran (ATL)                    12/1

Hyun-Jin Ryu (LAD)                   20/1

 

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Handing out Orioles awards at the All-Star break

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Handing out Orioles awards at the All-Star break

Posted on 16 July 2013 by Luke Jones

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Standing at 53-43 and sending five representatives to Tuesday’s All-Star Game at Citi Field in New York, the Orioles had quite the memorable first 3 1/2 months of the season filled with plenty of highs and also some lows.

Before manager Buck Showalter and the Orioles get back to business in Texas on Friday, I’ve composed my list of All-Star break awards. Some are more serious than others, but there was plenty to remember over the first 96 games of the 2013 season.

Most Valuable Player: Chris Davis
Skinny: Manny Machado deserves more consideration here than most will give him if you take his remarkable defense into account, but the Orioles first baseman is on pace to break franchise records for RBIs, slugging percentage, OPS, extra-base hits, and total bases as well as surpass the American League home run record of 61 set by Roger Maris in 1961. Who else could it really be?

Best Starting Pitcher: Miguel Gonzalez
Skinny: Chris Tillman received the All-Star nod, but Gonzalez has been the Orioles’ best starter, especially since posting a 2.88 earned run average in his last 10 starts upon returning from a May stint on the 15-day disabled list. The 29-year-old posted seven straight quality starts heading into the All-Star break and his 3.48 ERA is the best in the starting rotation.

Best Relief Pitcher: Tommy Hunter
Skinny: Darren O’Day earned consideration here, but Hunter’s ability to pitch more than one inning has saved the bullpen numerous times. With Luis Ayala traded early in the season and Pedro Strop unable to bounce back from his late-season struggles from a year ago, the Orioles would have been in major trouble with their bullpen without Hunter’s 2.41 ERA and 52 1/3 innings of work.

Biggest Surprise: Manny Machado
Skinny: With Davis taking aim at the record books, it’s difficult not to give him the nod here, but I would have predicted Davis to be more likely for a breakout season than Machado, who just celebrated his 21st birthday less than two weeks ago. We now see the third baseman as a doubles machine with a shot at the single-season record, but many thought Showalter had gotten too much Florida sun when he put the unproven Machado in the No. 2 lineup spot at the start of the season.

Biggest Disappointment: Jason Hammel
Skinny: The Opening Day starter was counted on to be the de facto ace and has instead looked like the weak link in the current starting rotation. His 5.24 ERA is worse than his career mark, but most of his other numbers align closely with his career statistics prior to his arrival in Baltimore last season.

Most Overrated Performer: Nick Markakis
Skinny: The Orioles right fielder was close to being voted into the All-Star Game, but he is on pace for career lows in batting average and OPS and has become more of a singles hitter in recent years except for his 2012 injury-plagued campaign. Markakis is still a good player, but the clamoring for his inclusion in the Midsummer Classic was more about his popularity and less about his production. Many will argue that catcher Matt Wieters deserves this distinction, but few tried to say he was deserving of All-Star honors with his poor offensive output this season.

Most Underrated Performer: Nate McLouth
Skinny: Even McLouth’s biggest supporters had to wonder if the second-half success he enjoyed last season was a fluke, but the left fielder continues to be a spark plug at the top of the order and on the base paths with a team-leading 24 stolen bases. He doesn’t do anything that blows you away, but McLouth makes a substantial contribution just about every night, whether it shows up in the box score or not.

Most Improved Player: Ryan Flaherty
Skinny: The second baseman hit .133 in his first 102 plate appearances before being demoted to Triple-A Norfolk and has batted .300 in 94 plate appearances since being recalled at the end of May. The simple fact that many are clamoring for Flaherty to play over veteran Brian Roberts says all you need to know about his improvement since the start of the season.

Biggest Injury: Wei-Yin Chen’s strained right oblique
Skinny: The Taiwanese lefty went down with the injury in mid-May, leaving a major hole in the rotation for nearly two months. Ironically, the long layoff may pay off in the long run for Chen, who tired down the stretch last year and should now feel strong for the remainder of the season after less wear and tear on his pitching arm.

Most Important Win: A 2-1 victory over the Yankees thanks to Adam Jones’ homer off Mariano Rivera on July 7
Skinny: Even Showalter downplayed the significance of the dramatic victory in early July, but the Orioles were on the verge of dropping their third straight one-run game to New York to complete a 1-5 road trip before Jones tagged the greatest closer of all time for his first blown save at Yankee Stadium since 2010.

Most Disappointing Loss: Jim Johnson’s meltdown in Toronto on May 26
Skinny: The Orioles sent Johnson to the mound with a 5-2 lead and needed only three outs to take three of four from the Blue Jays at Rogers Centre. A double, two singles, a walk, and a Munenori Kawasaki double later, the closer had blown his fourth save in his last five chances and the Orioles had suffered a stunning 6-5 loss on a Sunday afternoon.

Most Exciting Moment: Chris Dickerson’s walk-off homer against the Tigers on May 31
Skinny: All-Star Game starter Max Scherzer had pitched brilliantly for eight innings before Detroit manager Jim Leyland turned the game over to Jose Valverde with a 5-3 lead in the ninth. Before an electric crowd of over 46,000, the Orioles staged a rally as Markakis hit a homer to lead off the inning and the part-time player Dickerson hammered a three-run blast into the right-center bleachers for one of the most exciting regular-season moments in Camden Yards history.

The Kevin Gregg-Michael Gonzalez Fireman Award: Pedro Strop
Skinny: The Orioles tried to stick with the volatile but talented Strop as long as they could, but you knew time was running short for the 28-year-old on June 29 when Showalter felt the need to warm up O’Day in his bullpen as the struggling reliever was working the ninth inning with an 11-3 lead over the Yankees. Sporting a 7.25 ERA in 29 appearances, Strop was dealt along with Jake Arrieta to the Chicago Cubs a few days later in exchange for starting pitcher Scott Feldman.

The Justin Duchscherer “Yes, He Was an Oriole” Award: Mike Belfiore
Skinny: If you’re asking who Belfiore is, you’re probably not alone as the left-handed reliever has twice been recalled to the 25-man roster this season but hasn’t appeared in a game. Chances are good he’s near the top of the list of players currently on the 40-man roster who could be designated for assignment should the need for a roster spot arise, but Belfiore does have a 3.67 ERA for Triple-A Norfolk this season.

The Jack Cust Baserunning Award: Alexi Casilla’s ninth-inning blunder against the Red Sox
Skinny: Trying to rally against Boston closer Andrew Bailey on June 15, the Orioles sent the speedy Casilla into the game to run for J.J. Hardy at first base with one out. After Ryan Flaherty lined a ball sharply to right fielder Shane Victorino, Casilla was inexplicably standing on third base as he was doubled off first to end the game. The utility infielder said after the game he knew the number of outs and simply misread the ball off Flaherty’s bat, but the play may have gone down as the Orioles’ worst pinch-running debacle since Manny Alexander was picked off upon running for Cal Ripken in a 1996 game that then went into extra innings.

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Chris Davis and the Question of PED’s

Posted on 16 July 2013 by Geoff Crawley

Orioles First Baseman Chris Davis has 37 home runs at the All Star Break.

Read that again.

Thirty seven is a good season for most players. Davis has hit that number in 96 games, putting him on pace for 62 this year. So, naturally, the conversation turns to performance enhancing drugs. In fact, Davis was asked directly by a fan on twitter a few weeks ago if he was on steroids, to which he simply replied, “No.”

That’s the best way to handle it, I believe. I mean, think about it. If a player is clean, that’s all he has to say. There is no need to go into a long diatribe about how he’s always been clean and he doesn’t believe in that stuff, blah blah, yackety, schmackety. Critics won’t believe you anyway. Drug testing in Major League Baseball has come a long way since the days of the Bash Brothers in the late 80′s. Can it still be fooled? Sure. But it isn’t like Chris Davis just started hitting home runs like a certain OF who once hit 50 in a season sandwiched by 16 and 18 home run seasons.

Davis has a career 162 game average of 35 home runs. That’s the touchstone for a legit power hitter. This is really his second full season in the big leagues, third if you count the 113 game season he had in Texas in 2009 where he hit 21 home runs, which projects to 30 over a full season. Heck, even in 2008 he hit 17 in 80 games.

The point is that Chris Davis didn’t show up at spring training all of a sudden this year with a swollen head and body like Barry Bonds. The guy has always been a power hitter. This year, he is a power hitter having a magical season. The sad part is that we can’t simply enjoy the ride because of guys like Bonds, McGwire, Sosa, Rodriguez, and many others, becaus every time a player gets off to a great start like this, the question of PED’s will come up.

Hopefully MLB’s testing will keep getting better. Players are always going to try to look for an advantage. Most will keep it within the rules. The ones that don’t shouldn’t ruin it for those that do. Chris Davis has never tested positive, and doesn’t fit the profile of a guy that uses PED’s. He was asked, he answered, he gets tested regularly. That’s good enough for me to just enjoy the ride.

How about you?

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Orioles’ Chris Davis Finishes Fourth in 2013 Home Run Derby

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Orioles’ Chris Davis Finishes Fourth in 2013 Home Run Derby

Posted on 15 July 2013 by danciarrocchi

Chris Davis may have outslugged all of major league baseball through the first half of the season, but that momentum wasn’t enough to win the 2013 Home Run Derby.

That isn’t to say Davis put on a performance to scoff at. His eight first-round home runs were enough to advance to the second round, however just four home runs from that point on were not enough to reach the finals. Those spots were earned by Washington’s Bryce Harper and Oakland’s Yoenis Cespedes, with Cespedes besting Harper 9-8.

Davis made the most of his 12 total home runs, as the longest traveled 461 feet and raised his average distance to 415 feet on the night.  His home run total was the most an Oriole hit since 2004 when Miguel Tejada won the event with 27 total home runs and a round-high of 15.

Though Davis led the majors with 37 home runs at the break, his invitation to the Home Run Derby didn’t come without criticism.

Hometown fans grew concerned that an event like the derby could disrupt Davis’ swing, or perhaps tire him out as he gets readyfor the season’s homestretch. The latter isn’t likely to happen, especially considering Davis normally takes 60 swings each batting practice session and at one point took about 200. Davis took just 32 swings Tuesday night, and derby champion Cespedes took 57 swings.

But the heaviest criticisms came on the heels of suspicions of P.E.D. use, which has been directed toward him most of the season. But this isn’t just unique to Davis, as it seems to follow everyone who is amid a breakout season. It happened with Toronto’s Jose Bautista, who hit 54 home runs in 2010, and it’s happening today with Davis despite only clean test results to date.

“I understand it comes with the territory,” Davis told WNST’s Nestor Aparicio. “I mean, I get tested just like everyone else. I’ve been tested a number of times this year. Time will tell. That’s basically what I have on my side right now.”

What Davis also has on his side is history, because it’s not as if his power numbers are from out of nowhere. His scouting report has always touted massive power potential, and in addition to his 33 home runs in 2012 and his 21 in part-time duty during 2009 , he also logged 36 in just 129 games of minor-league ball in the 2007 season. The 2013 season isn’t so much an anomaly, but a culmination of what he’s worked for thus far. Adjustments in preparation and approach have led to a better familiarization of the strike zone.

With 66 games remaining on the Orioles’ schedule, Davis still has time to rack-up even more staggering numbers. And as long as that progresses, it seems as though he’ll always face these unfounded accusations.

But like most of the baseball world, that hasn’t stopped Davis from giving himself his due.

“I celebrate it all the time,” he said. “I don’t think it’s anything you have to hang your head about. I think if you’re proud of it and if you have nothing to hide, you should celebrate it.”

MORE: Nestor Asks Chris Davis About P.E.D. Accusations and Testing

Baltimore’s Next Sports Media Superstar contestant Dan Ciarrocchi is an editor of Hogs Haven, an SB Nation website. He also contributes to the fantasy football section of Pro Football Focus and covered Towson University baseball for two years at The Towerlight.

Follow @PFF_Dan

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