Tag Archive | "Luke Scott"

Anyone have a place in Aruba and a hammock for Dan Duquette?

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Anyone have a place in Aruba and a hammock for Dan Duquette?

Posted on 18 December 2013 by Drew Forrester

I’m sure Dan Duquette needs a nap now after that flurry of activity over the last week or so of the hot stove season.

Last Friday, the Birds snatched away some guy named Mike something-or-other from the Red Sox in the Rule 5 draft.  He’ll need to hang around all year – like Flaherty (’12) and McFarland (’13) did – on the 25-man roster or else be offered back to Boston.  I’m sure Buck Showalter is just thrilled with only having a 24-man club to work with from April until September 1.

Yesterday, Duquette filled a hole he created two weeks ago when he brought Grant Balfour into the fold for two years to serve as the team’s closer.

Poor Dan.  He probably needs a massage and a follow-up appointment to make sure he’s not overheated.

So, it’s nearly Christmas.  The “new year” is just around the corner.  January quickly turns into February around here, particularly when the days and weeks are filled with furious discussion about the Ravens and their next playoff game.  Before you know it, the players start flowing into Sarasota for spring training.

In other words — the baseball season will be here soon.

Where are all the players who will help the Orioles win in 2014?

Balfour will help, we all assume.  Yes, he’s 36.  Yes, his numbers away from Oakland Coliseum spiked a bit, as expected.  And, yes, he’ll be closing games against the likes of the Red Sox and Yankees instead of the Mariners and Astros.  That said, Balfour is a much better option than Tommy Hunter would have been for the upcoming season.

So, we’ll check off on Balfour.

Next?

Ryan Flaherty and perhaps some guy you’ve never heard of named Jemile Weeks will likely compete for the starting second base job.  If Jonathan Schoop can get healthy and stay that way, he might get his hands dirty at 2B as well.  Make no mistake about it, though, this isn’t necessarily a position of strength for the Birds heading into 2014, despite the fact I personally believe Flaherty has the tools to be a “decent” everyday player.

Duquette publicly stated his off-season efforts would focus on a left-handed bat (a real one, presumably) and a left-fielder (again, I’m figuring he wanted a real one) to help produce more runs with players who understand the value of on-base percentage.

Nothing’s been done there yet.  On either account.

Yes, yes, yes, I know, the off-season haul DID include the signing of Francisco Peguero, a cast-off for the Giants who scorched the National League with a .200 batting average in his 35 career games over there.

Oh, and Nolan Reimold is back.

There’s no left-handed bat yet.

Plenty were available, but all of them make too much money for the Orioles in this “limited market” they supposedly occupy.

Are you ready for the return of Luke Scott?

You better be.

So, the off-season rolls on in Baltimore the way it usually does.  With promises, hopes and expectations — and nothing much to show for it once the presents have been unwrapped and the sunshine of Florida beckons in the not-so-distant-future.

Ticket prices increased, though.  And, the Orioles got about $30 million more in TV money to spend on players this year.  They’re not spending it, mind you, but they have it at their disposal.  So, they have that going for them, which is nice.

Things could change over the next 4-6 weeks.  Duquette could make a trade of some sort that fills one or two of the needs he stressed he was trying to fill earlier this month.  A free-agent still hanging around without a team might wind up saying “yes” to the Orioles in the days before spring training begins.

Yes, things COULD change.

But, they won’t.

Some things never change with the Orioles.

They aren’t willing to do what it takes to be a championship organization.

A fact, they’ve been proving – again – over the last six weeks since free agency began and teams who are trying to win took steps to do just that.

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Lindstrom latest to make way to DL for Orioles

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Lindstrom latest to make way to DL for Orioles

Posted on 11 May 2012 by Luke Jones

BALTIMORE — After years of battling one another to escape the cellar in the American League East, it looks peculiar to see the Orioles and Tampa Bay Rays sitting tied atop the division.

Even if it is only the second week of May.

Of course, the Rays have become a household name among the elite teams of the American League over the last five seasons as the Orioles attempt to copy their secrets in competing with the fat payrolls of the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox.

After a difficult series with the Texas Rangers in which they lost three of four games, the Orioles will send journeyman Dana Eveland to the hill in his first start with the club. The left-hander was 3-2 with a 2.21 earned run average in 36 2/3 innings with Triple-A Norfolk this season after failing to make the 25-man roster out of spring training.

The Orioles are Eveland’s seventh big league club after the 28-year-old previously had stints with Milwaukee, Arizona, Oakland, Toronto, Pittsburgh, and, most recently, the Los Angeles Dodgers. In 59 career starts in the majors, Eveland is 17-22 with a 5.38 ERA, including 19 quality starts.

To clear room for Eveland on the 25-man roster, the Orioles have placed relief pitcher Matt Lindstrom on the 15-day disabled list and minor league infielder Zelous Wheeler has been designated for assignment to create a spot for Eveland on the 40-man roster.

The right-handed reliever said after the second game of Thursday’s doubleheader he heard a pop in the middle finger of his pitching hand but didn’t believe it to be serious. Apparently, it was serious enough to sideline him despite a 1.29 ERA in 14 innings (13 appearances) this season.

“My middle finger, I kind of felt a pop on it on one of my two-seam fastballs, but it’s nothing serious at all,” Lindstrom said after Thursday’s outing. “Just a little soreness in my middle finger.”

Before Friday’s game, Jason Hammel was still listed as the expected starter for Monday when the New York Yankees come to town. The right-hander said he was still optimistic about that timetable for his next start after being scratched for Thursday’s start with right knee soreness.

Injured outfielder Nolan Reimold (herniated disc) finally received his epidural injection on Friday after it was delayed several days due to illness. Manager Buck Showalter had previously hoped Reimold would be able to go on a rehab assignment on Monday, but the recovery time from the injection will prevent that, likely meaning he will not be ready to return from the disabled list when eligible on Wednesday.

Former Oriole Luke Scott makes his return to Baltimore this weekend as he’s been on a tear for the Rays in the absence of Evan Longoria. Hitting cleanup and serving as the designated hitter on Friday night, Scott has seven home runs and 22 runs batted in while hitting .247 in his first 93 at-bats.

After spending four seasons with the Orioles, Scott holds no ill will toward the club after it elected to non-tender him in what would have been his final year of arbitration with the club. Scott missed the final two months of the 2011 season after undergoing shoulder surgery.

“I have just tremendous memories from here that I cherish,” Scott said in the Tampa Bay clubhouse prior to the series opener. “I am very thankful for them.”

Japanese pitcher Tsuyoshi Wada underwent Tommy John surgery on his injured elbow on Friday and issued a statement following the procedure:

“The procedure went as planned and Dr. [Lewis] Yocum felt good about how it went. He predicts a full recovery. I’m glad to have this over with and look forward to beginning my rehabilitation so I can get back to pitching for the Orioles as soon as possible.”

Here are Friday night’s lineups…

Tampa Bay
RF Ben Zobrist
1B Carlos Pena
CF B.J. Upton
DH Luke Scott
3B Jeff Keppinger
LF Matt Joyce
SS Sean Rodriguez
C Jose Molina
2B Elliot Johnson

SP Jeremy Hellickson (3-0, 2.75 ERA)

Baltimore
3B Ryan Flaherty
SS J.J. Hardy
RF Nick Markakis
CF Adam Jones
C Matt Wieters
LF Wilson Betemit
1B Chris Davis
DH Nick Johnson
2B Robert Andino

SP Dana Eveland (first 2012 start)

Visit the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault to hear Luke Scott’s conversation with WNST.net’s Glenn Clark on Friday afternoon as well as Buck Showalter’s comments prior to the start of a three-game set with the Tampa Bay Rays HERE.

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Rays PBP voice Freed says Luke Scott has brought leadership to Tampa

Posted on 11 May 2012 by WNST Audio

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After Scott’s injury, Orioles should look even harder at trading Guthrie

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After Scott’s injury, Orioles should look even harder at trading Guthrie

Posted on 23 July 2011 by Luke Jones

BALTIMORE — With the trade deadline only a week away, the Orioles have a very difficult decision to make when it comes to the future of Jeremy Guthrie, who could be making his final start with the club at Camden Yards on Sunday afternoon.

Do you trade your most consistent pitcher — even with an ugly 4-13 record — and further destroy a starting rotation sporting a 7.88 earned run average over its last 23 games entering Saturday’s action? Or do you retain your lone veteran presence on a club still hoping to develop the likes of Zach Britton, Jake Arrieta, and Brian Matusz and forgo any potential return of younger players for the future?

The trade winds have whispered Guthrie’s name for a few seasons now, but the Orioles ultimately viewed their de facto ace as more valuable to them than any other team trying to pluck him at the deadline. Despite a 42-61 record in five seasons with the Orioles, Guthrie has a career 4.10 ERA over that span, including three seasons in which he finished with an ERA below 3.85.

By no means should the Orioles simply send Guthrie to the first taker, but perhaps a look at the unfortunate case of Luke Scott should make president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail think long and hard about trading the 32-year-old pitcher. Scott was once again placed on the disabled list Saturday with a torn labrum in his right shoulder and will miss the rest of the season as he opts to either undergo surgery or go through a lengthy rehabilitation program.

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A year ago at this time, Scott was in the midst of becoming the team’s most valuable player when he hit 27 home runs and posted a .902 OPS. Instead of trading Scott at last year’s deadline or moving him in the offseason, the Orioles abstained and now face the decision of what to do with the 33-year-old power hitter in his final year of arbitration and making $6.4 million this season. While a team-friendly offer is within reason this winter, it would be unwise to offer arbitration and to pay Scott upwards of $7 million with his health being such an uncertainty at age 34 in 2012.

Instead of moving Scott — who has a .826 OPS in his four seasons in Baltimore — when they had the chance to get younger value in return, the Orioles now face the prospect of allowing a declining Scott to walk for nothing.

“My heart’s desire is I’m going to be here when the organization makes that turn to get back to where we need to be,” Scott said. “But that’s out of my hands. All I can do is just get ready for this challenge that’s coming up to get myself ready for next spring training and to bring to the table what I bring to the table when I’m healthy. The rest is the Orioles’ decision. The good Lord has control of my future, and my hope is it will be here.”

The comments are unsurprising and echo the thoughts of Guthrie whenever the pitcher’s been asked about his desire to remain with the Orioles amid trade rumors the last few seasons. The Stanford product has done everything asked of him and has always said the right things during his time in Baltimore, with very little in return in the way of run support and accolades.

However, Guthrie will also enter his final year of arbitration this winter after making $5.75 million in 2011. He will be 33 years old next season and will likely seek a three-year contract and relatively substantial dollars. With the Orioles mired in last place with a 40-57 record, does Guthrie really fit the profile of a pitcher who will still be productive by the time the club might — and that’s a major hypothetical at this point — be ready to compete?

It’s not smart to offer multi-year deals to 33-year-old pitchers when you’re not close to contending, which is where the Orioles will likely find themselves a year from now.

As tempting as it is to simply maintain the status quo — you know what you’re getting from Guthrie every fifth day — perhaps it’s time to grant him his release from baseball purgatory. There’s little doubt the right-hander could be of great help to a contender looking for an effective third or fourth starter. In return, the Orioles will hopefully fetch a player or two close to being ready to contribute at the major league level.

While no real fault of his own, Guthrie hasn’t made the Orioles a winner, and it isn’t likely to change anytime soon as he approaches his mid-30s. Failing to get good returns for productive older players has happened far too often over the last 14 years, and it’s really no excuse if you’re trying to eventually contend and not just concern yourself with being a .500 team the following season.

Are the Orioles worse without Guthrie in the immediate future? Yes.

Will Guthrie put them over the top if the Orioles find themselves on the cusp of being a contender? Doubtful.

As brutal as it might be to the current starting rotation should Guthrie be dealt, it’s far more painful watching Scott limp away from his 2011 season with the Orioles knowing the possibility of getting something for him is all but gone.

If the right opportunity arises — a fair trade for the pitcher’s services — MacPhail and the Orioles need to make a deal.

If they decide not to, I hope we’re not thinking back to this conversation again next summer.

And wondering what might have been had they decided to pull the trigger.

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Orioles fall to Angels, lose Scott for rest of season

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Orioles fall to Angels, lose Scott for rest of season

Posted on 22 July 2011 by Luke Jones

The Orioles not only lost the series opener against the Los Angeles Angels Friday night, but they lost Luke Scott for the rest of the season.

After being activated from the 15-day disabled list prior to Friday’s game, Scott went 0-for-3 and would not have batted in the ninth inning of a 6-1 loss had his spot in the order come to the plate. The left-handed hitter once again experienced pain in his right shoulder after deciding he would take one more trial to play through the pain of a torn labrum before electing to undergo surgery or a season-ending rehabilitation program.

“Luke’s been a tough guy. A lot of guys would have flown the coop, and he wanted to play,” manager Buck Showalter said. “He knew it was something he was going to have to do, anyway. I applaud him for that, for the ‘want-to.’ It’s not fair for the Orioles or for Luke to proceed down this path anymore.”

Prior to the game, Scott said he planned to play the next three to five days to gauge whether he could continue playing or would need to forgo the rest of the season and decide on a course of action for the shoulder.

Showalter said Scott would likely go back on the disabled list Saturday with outfielder Matt Angle possibly being recalled from Triple-A Norfolk. No decision has been made on the route Scott will choose to treat the injured right shoulder, but it was becoming more apparent he would not make it through the remainder of the season.

“I know what he’s been battling through all year,” said catcher Matt Wieters following the game. “Hopefully, it gets healed and gets back to where we know Luke can be. Whatever is going to be best for him and best for his family is what we want him to do. We just want to get him healthy.”

Scott had been on the disabled list since July 5 before being activated for Friday’s game. He is hitting just .220 with nine home runs and 22 runs batted in after being named the Orioles’ most valuable player in 2010.

Simon says not bad at all

Given the Orioles’ starting pitching woes — particularly over the last six weeks — who would have thought Alfredo Simon would provide the best back-to-back starts the club has seen in recent memory.

Coming off a strong seven-inning performance in a win over Cleveland last Saturday, Simon allowed two runs and six hits in 6 2/3 innings against the Angels. The 30-year-old struck out three and walked one despite taking the loss with only one run of support behind him. Simon threw a season-high 96 pitches after working in relief until July 9.

“He gave us a really good chance to win,” Showalter said. “I was pleased with his performance again. Had him maybe a tick above where we had hoped to take him with pitches and everything. We should be in position to turn him loose now.”

His start marked the fourth time in the last six games that Baltimore starters have pitched at least six innings, no small feat for a rotation that’s pitched six innings or more just seven times in the last 23 games.

Simon completed six scoreless innings before allowing doubles to Mike Trout and Maicer Izturis in the seventh inning, which gave the Angels a 1-0 lead. Jason Berken replaced Simon with two outs, surrendering a Torii Hunter double to plate Izturis and close the book on the starter.

“I just tried to focus every inning that I go out, try to get a zero,” Simon said. “But the last inning that I threw, I got [in a jam] with Izturis with a man on second. It was 3-1 and I didn’t want to walk the guy, so I just threw a fastball to him and he just got a hit, and that’s part of the game. I just threw a good game, but we didn’t hit too good tonight. That’s part of the game, and I understand that.”

With no disrespect to Simon, it’s a sad state of affairs for the Orioles to be depending on Simon as one of their most reliable starters, but the veteran has done a commendable job with the opportunity.

Whatever it takes

Whenever the Orioles hit, they can’t get anyone out.

And whenever they manage to pitch effectively, the Orioles can’t push runs across the plate.

Of course, they’ve been unable to do either on far too many nights as well.

Despite consecutive quality starts by Jake Arrieta and Simon, the Orioles have scored just one run and collected five hits over their last 18 innings.

Angels starter Ervin Santana stifled the Orioles over 7 2/3 innings, taking a no-hitter into the sixth inning and holding them to just one run on a J.J. Hardy run-scoring single in the eighth inning. The right-hander collected his first road victory since April 29.

For the Orioles, it was another wasted opportunity.

“It’s tough because we’ve gotten some good starts out of those two games, and when the starters give you a good outing, you want to go out there and get them a win,” Wieters said. “That’s baseball. It’s not going to work like that every time.

“It seems like when we’re hitting well, we can’t quite pitch well; when we’re pitching well, we can’t quite score enough runs.”

To quote a historical figure, “By any means necessary,” right?

Odds & ends

The Angels’ win snapped the Orioles’ six-game winning streak against Los Angeles. … The Orioles committed two errors after committing just one error in their previous nine games. Derrek Lee’s ninth-inning miscue opened the door for Kevin Gregg to allow a grand slam to Vernon Wells with two outs in the ninth inning, turning a 2-1 nailbiter into an insurmountable five-run deficit in the final frame. … Friday’s game-time temperature was 104 degrees. It marked the second-highest temperature at Camden Yards in the last 15 years, the highest being a 105-degree roaster against the Toronto Blue Jays on July 6, 1999.

Listen to Buck Showalter, Alfredo Simon, and Matt Wieters following the 6-1 loss as well as Luke Scott’s comments about his injured right shoulder prior to Friday night’s game right here.

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Live from Camden Yards: Scott giving injured shoulder one last run as Angels come to town

Posted on 22 July 2011 by Luke Jones

**Join us in the Orange Crush live chat at 7:00 as the Orioles welcome the surging Los Angeles Angels to town for a three-game set**

BALTIMORE — With Vladimir Guerrero still sidelined with a broken hand and fresh off a two-homer performance in Double-A Bowie, Luke Scott will take a final chance to see how his injured right shoulder responds after a stint on the disabled list.

The Orioles have reinstated Scott — who will occupy the designated hitter spot and hit sixth — and optioned outfielder Matt Angle to Triple-A Norfolk prior to the start of a three-game series with the Los Angeles Angels. The plan is for Scott to play the next three to five days to gauge whether he can be productive with the torn labrum in his right shoulder that’s hindered him most of the season.

If Scott feels he is not being productive enough to help the team, he will elect to have season-ending surgery or go the rehabilitation route that reliever Jason Berken chose when he had his own slap tear in his pitching shoulder. The Opening Day left fielder says the shoulder doesn’t affect his throwing as much as when he’s at the plate. Unlike Tommy John surgery, which has a very high success rate, labrum surgery is a bit trickier depending on the location and severity of the tear.

“There’s hit and miss. Some guys take to surgery well, and some guys don’t,” said Scott, who mentioned shortstop J.J. Hardy’s slow response to shoulder surgery in 2004. “If I choose this path, if I choose to do surgery, what are the pluses and minuses? OK, I’ll be ready to go in six months, but will I be back to myself?”

Scott will get his first opportunity to gauge what he can do against Angels starter Ervin Santana, who has not won a road start since April 29 against Tampa Bay. However, the right-hander has now allowed more than three runs in any of his last six starts.

In other injury-related news, infielder Cesar Izturis played five innings in Sarasota Friday and will play for Double-A Bowie on Saturday and Sunday. He could be activated as early as Tuesday when the Orioles travel to Toronto.

Brian Roberts experienced a migraine Friday and did not participate in any baseball-related activity.

Manager Buck Showalter was asked about Brian Matusz’s disappointing start for Triple-A Norfolk on Thursday, and the skipper labeled it with the ever popular “It kind of is what it is.” Showalter did indicate that Tides pitching coach Mike Griffin was a little more positive than the statistics indicated.

“It wasn’t what Brian is capable of [doing],” Showalter said. “It looked like the arrow was pointing up a little bit each outing, and that one was a little bit of a setback for him. Nothing he can’t get back on his feet with real quickly.”

Visit the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault to hear more from Luke Scott and Buck Showalter prior to the start of Friday’s game against the Angels.

Here are tonight’s starting lineups:

Los Angeles
2B Maicer Izturis
RF Torii Hunter
DH Bobby Abreu
LF Vernon Wells
3B Alberto Callaspo
SS Erick Aybar
1B Mark Trumbo
CF Mike Trout
C Jeff Mathis

SP Ervin Santana (4-8, 3.84 ERA)

Baltimore
SS J.J. Hardy
RF Nick Markakis
CF Adam Jones
C Matt Wieters
1B Derrek Lee
DH Luke Scott
3B Mark Reynolds
LF Felix Pie
2B Blake Davis

SP Alfredo Simon (2-2, 4.36 ERA)

As we do for every weeknight home game, join us in the Orange Crush live chat beginning at 7:00. Talk about the game with us as an array of WNST.net personalities visit the cyber sports bar throughout the evening! Be sure to follow us on Twitter (@WNST) for the latest updates and analysis regarding the happenings from Oriole Park at Camden Yards!

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Orioles’ concerns growing over Scott’s injured shoulder

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Orioles’ concerns growing over Scott’s injured shoulder

Posted on 19 July 2011 by Luke Jones

BALTIMORE — Despite completing two rehab starts for Double-A Bowie, outfielder/designated hitter Luke Scott will not be activated from the 15-day disabled list on Tuesday as was previously hoped.

And judging from comments made by the left-handed slugger and manager Buck Showalter, surgery on Scott’s torn labrum in his right shoulder appears more and more likely. Despite nearly two weeks of rest in which he didn’t swing a bat or lift any weights, Scott did not appear to be encouraged with the health of his shoulder, claiming “it is what it is.” Scott told Showalter the shoulder is at 70 percent right now.

The tentative plan is for Scott to take a day or two to rest before potentially playing in a couple more minor league rehab games.

“It’s just been a challenge to deal with,” Scott said. “I took 13 days completely off, not doing anything, and it’s only just two days of rehab at-bats. I’m trying to build it up some more. … If I’m not 100-percent ready or if I’m not in a position where I’m really going to step in and help the team, I need to take the necessary means to get to that point.”

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Showalter said the decision for Scott to either undergo surgery or shut down the shoulder for a rehabilitation program will ultimately be up to the player. However, the Orioles manager also mentioned the timetable for recovery is getting tight for Scott to be ready for the start of next season if he elects to rehab the injury like Jason Berken did last season.

Whatever the route Scott ultimately chooses — surgery or a rehabilitation program — it’s appearing more likely that his playing days are numbered in 2011. With Scott making $6.4 million this season and facing arbitration (eligible for free agency following the 2012 season), the wise choice would be to take care of the injured shoulder sooner rather than later.

In other news, the Orioles have activated Alfredo Simon from the restricted list, and he is scheduled to make Friday’s start as previously hoped. Third baseman Josh Bell has been optioned to Triple-A Norfolk after a one-day stay in Baltimore, and Brian Roberts has been shifted to the 60-day disabled list to clear a 40-man roster spot for the returning Simon.

The Orioles also completed a minor-league trade, sending veteran infielder Nick Green and cash considerations to the Texas Rangers for left-handed relief pitcher Zach Phillips. Showalter received a favorable report from pitching coach Rick Adair and former pitching coach Mark Connor regarding the 24-year-old, who had a 4.43 earned run average in 33 appeances for Triple-A Round Rock.

Oft-injured minor league pitcher Chorye Spoone has been designated for assignment to clear room on the 40-man roster for Phillips.

Infielder Cesar Izturis is scheduled to begin a rehab assignment on Friday as he moves closer to returning to the Orioles.

And everybody’s favorite starting pitcher, Justin Duchscherer, has received a recommendation from the doctor who performed his previous hip surgery to undergo another procedure.

To hear more from Showalter and Scott, visit the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault right here.

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Live from Camden Yards: No DL decision on Vlad yet, Scott close to returning

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Live from Camden Yards: No DL decision on Vlad yet, Scott close to returning

Posted on 16 July 2011 by Luke Jones

**Visit the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault to hear from Buck Showalter, J.J. Hardy, and Nick Markakis prior to Saturday night’s game with the Cleveland Indians**

BALTIMORE — While J.J. Hardy’s contract received the most attention Saturday afternoon, the Orioles continue to wait on a decision to place Vladimir Guerrero on the disabled list.

The 36-year-old designated hitter has a broken bone in his right hand and is unable to grip a bat without pain, but the Orioles appear willing to wait for another day, leaving them again with a short two-man bench of only backup catcher Craig Tatum and infielder Robert Andino for the third game of a four-game series with the Indians.

“Hopefully we’ll make a decision shortly,” said manager Buck Showalter, who has discussed Guerrero’s status with head trainer Richie Bancells.

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Considering Guerrero hasn’t played since Sunday in Boston, it seems pointless to wait for the Orioles to continue to wait when Guerrero could potentially return in 10 days if placed on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to July 11. Instead, the Orioles will play a man down.

Outfielder Luke Scott received a cortisone injection on Friday and has taken batting practice a day late. The plan is for Scott to receive at-bats with Double-A Bowie on Sunday and Monday with a potential activation on Tuesday against the Red Sox. With Guerrero likely going on the disabled list at some point over the next few days, Scott would become the full-time designated hitter.

Showalter also revealed Brad Bergesen as the likely starter against the Red Sox on Monday. Much of that depends on how much the bullpen might be used over the final two games of the Indians series. Bergesen warmed up in the bullpen during Friday’s game but was not used.

Left-handed pitcher Zach Britton pitched three innings — his scheduled workload — for Double-A Bowie on Friday night, allowing a solo home run on a 3-2 changeup. He will pitch again on Wednesday, but Showalter would not rule out a return prior to July 30, the projected date on which the Orioles would receive an extra year of service time.

“He could come back before the 30th,” Showalter said. “He controls that as much as we do.”

It’s the right thing to say, but it’s hard to imagine any scenario in which we see Britton back with the Orioles before month’s end.

Tonight’s starter Alfredo Simon will be placed on the restricted list on Sunday as he returns to the Dominican Republic to deal with his legal issues. The Orioles will gain a roster spot while Simon is away.

Here are tonight’s starting lineups:

Cleveland
LF Michael Bradley
SS Asdrubal Cabrera
DH Travis Hafner
1B Carlos Santana
3B Lonnie Chisenhall
2B Orlando Cabrera
RF Austin Kearns
C Lou Marson
CF Ezequiel Carrera

SP Carlos Carrasco (8-6, 4.28 ERA)

Baltimore
SS J.J. Hardy
RF Nick Markakis
CF Adam Jones
C Matt Wieters
1B Derrek Lee
3B Mark Reynolds
LF Felix Pie
DH Nolan Reimold
2B Blake Davis

SP Alfredo Simon (1-2, 4.85 ERA)

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Morning Reaction Orioles Midseason Report Card

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Morning Reaction Orioles Midseason Report Card

Posted on 06 July 2011 by Glenn Clark

The Baltimore Orioles are now two games into the second half of the 2011 season. On Wednesday’s edition of “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST, Drew Forrester and I gave our grades for Orioles players during the first half of the season.

CATCHERS:

wieters

Matt Wieters-Glenn Clark B+, Drew Forrester B
Jake Fox-Glenn D, Drew D
Craig Tatum-Glenn C-, Drew B

INFIELDERS:

hardy

Derrek Lee-Glenn D+, Drew D
Brian Roberts-Glenn D, Drew D
JJ Hardy-Glenn A-, Drew A
Mark Reynolds-Glenn B-, Drew C-
Robert Andino-Glenn C+, Drew C
Blake Davis-Glenn C, Drew B-
Cesar Izturis-Glenn D, Drew D
Ryan Adams-Glenn C, Drew D
Brandon Snyder-Glenn C-, Drew C-

OUTFIELDERS/DESIGNATED HITTERS:

vlad

Luke Scott-Glenn D, Drew D
Adam Jones-Glenn B-, Drew B+
Nick Markakis-Glenn B-, Drew C-
Nolan Reimold-Glenn C+, Drew C-
Felix Pie-Glenn F, Drew D-
Vladimir Guerrero-Glenn D+, Drew D+

STARTING PITCHERS:

britton

Jeremy Guthrie-Glenn C+, Drew C+
Jake Arrieta-Glenn B-, Drew C
Zach Britton-Glenn B, Drew B
Brian Matusz-Glenn D, Drew F
Chris Tillman-Glenn D, Drew D
Brad Bergesen-Glenn D+, Drew C-
Chris Jakubauskas-Glenn C-, Drew D

RELIEF PITCHERS:

kgregg

Koji Uehara-Glenn B, Drew B+
Jim Johnson-Glenn B+, Drew B-
Pedro Viola-Glenn C, Drew C
Kevin Gregg-Glenn C-, Drew C+
Alfredo Simon-Glenn C-, Drew C-
Jeremy Accardo-Glenn D, Drew D
Mike Gonzalez-Glenn D, Drew D
Josh Rupe-Glenn D, Drew D
Jason Berken-Glenn C, Drew C-
Clay Rapada-Glenn D-, Drew B-
Troy Patton-Glenn D, Drew F

MANAGER:

showalter

Buck Showalter-Glenn C-, Drew B+

If you missed the breakdown of our midseason grades on Wednesday’s edition of “The Morning Reaction”, hit the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault at WNST.net!

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Who is the Orioles’ Most Productive Bat?

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Who is the Orioles’ Most Productive Bat?

Posted on 28 June 2011 by Thyrl Nelson

The official halfway point in the Major League Baseball season is all but upon us and by now we have a pretty healthy body of work to scrutinize. When it comes to scrutiny, no one has seemingly gotten more, from an Orioles perspective, than 3rd baseman Mark Reynolds. While his defense has been an exercise in frustration and has to improve going forward, Reynolds’ offensive numbers have seemingly polarized the fan base. Those whose cup of Orange Kool-Aid is half empty are having a tough time getting past the strikeouts and batting average. The half full Orange Kool-Aid crowd looks at his walks, runs, doubles, homeruns and RBI while getting less at bats in the bottom of the lineup than many less productive O’s and try to quantify his production.

While the science of Sabermetrics has pervaded baseball in a big way, and attempted despite great resistance from the establishment to educate and enlighten baseball fans – and they have too- baseball is still scored based on the number of guys who cross home plate. WAR, OPS, PECOTA and BABIP do a great job in helping to identify trends and tendencies and to quantify what we’ve seen and can therefore expect going forward, but games are still scored in runs and identifying credible run producers in the era of modern stats can be a confusing endeavor to say the least.

 

At the end of the day, baseball is and always will be largely a function of luck and timing. Offensive prowess can certainly help to tip the scales in the favor of one team or another, but timely hitting still beats good hitting on most nights. Consider the old Strat-O-Matic baseball game; it assigned probablitites to dice rolls and reduced the game of baseball to a board game. It worked because like weighted rolls of the dice, over time the probabilities in baseball are bound to play out, but on any given game or roll or at bat, the improbable was and is possible.

 

Since stats are skewed based on numbers of at bats, plate appearances, RBI opportunities etc., comparing them without an Ivy League degree can be challenging. So in Strat-O-Matic baseball, or more comparably simple lottery calculations I offer the following.

 

Below is a chart listing the production of the regular members of the Orioles’ lineup based this seasons numbers per 100 plate appearances. As opposed to at bats, plate appearances take into account everything including walks, sac flies HBP’s etc. Think of each member of the Orioles lineup as a bucket of 100 lottery balls. Each time a player goes to the plate they pull one. For my money, it’s a lot like the luck and timing necessary to baseball success.

 

When Nick Markakis goes to the plate for example 67 of his 100 lottery balls are outs (10 of those strikeouts); he also has 21 singles, 2 doubles, 2 homeruns, 6 walks 1 sac fly and 1 HBP to pull from. Does that make him a better bet to produce runs than Mark Reynolds who has 64 outs in his bucket (26 of those K’s) and only 9 singles, but who also has 5 doubles, 4 homeruns, 16 walks 1 HBP and 1 sac fly to draw from? Some of the numbers were surprising to say the least.

 

The 2011 Orioles per 100 plate appearances:

 

 

 

 

 

Player

 

 

 

1B

 

 

 

2B

 

 

 

3B

 

 

 

HR

 

 

 

BB

 

 

 

HBP

 

 

 

SF

 

 

 

OUTS

 

 

 

K

 

 

 

RUNS

 

 

 

RBI

 

 

 

Markakis

21

2

0

2

6

1

1

67

10

9

9

A.Jones

18

4

0

4

5

1

2

66

18

12

14

Reynolds

9

5

0

4

16

1

1

64

26

13

13

Guerrero

21

5

0

2

3

1

0

68

11

9

10

Wieters

16

5

0

3

7

0

0

69

17

10

13

D. Lee

20

4

0

2

8

0

1

65

22

11

9

Scott

12

5

0

4

10

0

1

68

22

10

10

Hardy

16

6

0

5

9

0

1

63

15

14

14

Pie

19

4

1

0

2

0

0

74

15

11

5

Reimold

14

2

0

5

14

2

2

61

20

11

14

 

 

 

 

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