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Melvin, farewell and good luck

Posted on 31 January 2010 by dansoderberg

Long time Oriole Melvin Mora agreed to a one-year deal with the Colorado Rockies today. Mora will back up Ian Stewart and 3rd base and provide some depth off the bench for the Rockies.

I’d like to extend warm regards and the best of luck to Melvin. He was a valuable player for the O’s over the past decade and ranks among the team’s all time leaders in Games, Runs, and Doubles. Melvin was also the worst base runner I’ve ever seen and a bit of a malcontent last season, but his good certainly outweighed the bad.

Acquiring Mora was perhaps the one thing that Syd Thrift did right during his tenure as GM. Mora was acquired from the Mets along with 3 other players for Mike Bordick during the 2000 season. He started out as a versatile bench player before settling down at 3rd base and making himself into an above average defender. He had a couple of monster offensive seasons in 2003 and 2004, but was more often than not a solid bat and glove.

After toiling in the basement of the AL East for the past 10 years Melvin moves to a young, exciting team in Colorado with a chance to finally make the post-season. Here’s hoping Melvin Mora gets a chance for some October at bats.

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The Playoffs are slowly killing me

Posted on 29 October 2009 by dansoderberg

It’s 11:20 PM, do you know where your husband is? He’s most likely passed out on the sofa with the World Series blaring in the background. Every October I complain about baseball’s ridiculous postseason scheduling, and then I proceed to stay up until Midnight 5 times a week watching the very thing I complain about. I’m thru with complaining but I will say this, MLB has me and at this point can pretty much do anything it wants to me. Where MLB, and the networks for that matter, miss the point is that they don’t have a stranglehold on the next generation and continuing to schedule games later and later and make the season longer with unnecessary off days in the playoffs only makes the game less appealing to kids.

I’m officially sick of Mariano Rivera. He’s the sole reason I picked the MFYs to beat the Phils in 6 and he’s on his way to a 6 out save tonight. He’s been throwing one pitch for 15 years and I still can’t figure out how no one can hit it. He’s a one trick pony, but it is apparently the most amazing trick in baseball history.

The Orioles declined Melvin Mora’s 2010 option today. No surprise there. Melvin had been overpaid, showing his age and his baserunning skills make Jeff Stone look like Ichiro. I’d like to acknowledge Melvin’s service time as an Oriole. He wasn’t a great player, but was a very good player on a very bad team for a long time. He played all over the field, hit everywhere in the lineup, and from all accounts has been a good guy in the community. There were some rough spots this season between Melvin and Dave Trembley and I hope those few days of angst don’t overshadow Melvin’s career. That being said, with today’s announcement the Orioles are already a better baserunning club than they were in 2009.

Round of applause for Pedro Martinez tonight. Charlie Manuel showed great foresight in starting Pedro in Game 2 at Yankee Stadium. We knew Pedro wouldn’t rattle but weren’t so sure about how he’d pitch. He pitched into the 7th inning and gave his team a chance to win. AJ Burnett was simply better. Pedro got a pretty good chuckle as the Bronx faithful booed him mercilessly as he headed for the showers. Another great performance in a should-be Hall of Fame career.

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Orioles August report card

Posted on 01 September 2009 by Keith Melchior

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Various Pitchers;

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

Koji Uehara - STILL MIA  .. -

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Orioles doing the el-foldo again. Aren’t you mad?

Posted on 11 August 2009 by Keith Melchior

A month or so ago, Dave Trembley was furious that an umpire allegedly told him his guys weren’t hustling. People were jumping on the Dave Trembley bandwagon after that show of fire and passion for his team.

My, how things have changed. The All Star break began exactly one month ago Thursday. The Orioles were on a mini-streak of winning 2 straight series against Seattle and Toronto and were winners in 4 of their last 5 games and pulled to within 8 games on the .500 mark at 40-48. So much for momentum.  Did Criss Angel make the real Baltimore Orioles suddenly disappear?

Since that break, the Birds have played 24 games and won only 6, that’s right, SIX games. Now sitting at 46-66, they are the 2nd worst team in the AL and 4th worst in all of baseball. Trembley now sits in the dugout looking like he just found out his girlfriend wants to date other guys. The Orioles have reached their lowest point in the season and people are now starting to get a little more than disgusted with this team. 

 I mentioned a few months ago in a blog, they needed to bring in a solid winning veteran pitcher to teach these young guys how to pitch to major league batters. There is no one on this club who is experienced enough or qualified to teach, and that includes the manager and pitching coach. Those guys have proven time after time, either after throwing 100 pitches or lasting 5 innings, they are going to take the pitcher out of the game and turn it over to the bullpen.

Brad Bergesen is the only pitcher on this staff who looks like he knows what he is doing out on the mound. He IS a pitcher. If the other guys follow his lead, maybe they’d be successful. Bringing Tillman and Matusz up were PR moves to try to put fannies in the seats. Neither has really looked like the world beaters they appeared to be in the minors. It is a totally different world in Norfolk and Bowie. The things you get away with pitching against Columbus, Reading or Pawtucket will get you knocked around in New York, Detroit and Toronto.

I think it was a huge mistake to bring Tillman and Matusz to a club that has pretty much packed it in and is simply going through the motions at this point in the season. Yes, it gives them experience at the major league level, but they were winning in the minors and should have remained there for the rest of the season. Everyone is quick to make the excuse about innings pitched during a season. The minor league season is about over and these guys are extending it a little longer. Trembley had talked about using a 6-man rotation as the season winds down, just to give everyone a few extra days off. How did Maddox and Glavine both get to the 300 win plateau? They were pitchers who learned how to get batters out, get into the 8th innings by throwing less than 100 pitches, and most importantly, they knew how feed off of the success of each other while with the Braves. I do not see an inkling of that happening here.

Being 20 games under .500 and 23 games out of 1st place is, in itself, and EMBARRASSMENT to the city of Baltimore. I don’t want to hear, “well, if they played in the Central or West divisions, they’d be better”  They’d be 13.5 out in the Central and 21 out in the West. They have done NOTHING to improve and will continue to lose fans if they keep up that practice.  By packing it in before the season began and telling the fans, “We’re not going to win this season, but be patient, we will,”  they have totally ruined ANY chance of getting a high level free agent to come to Baltimore unless they grossly overpay him. Players do not want to play for losing teams unless they are going to be paid rather handsomely, especially teams that don’t even look like they want to get better. Look at Miguel Tejada. The Orioles signed Tejada by offering more money than any other club was willing to give him. They didn’t before Tejada, didn’t win with Tejada and they aren’t winning without him. What’s that tell you?

TWELVE seasons of watching sub-par baseball being played by the Baltimore Orioles makes me sick. I don’t buy the belief that the future will hold good things. I see no one in that clubhouse that is able to sit down with Tillman, Matusz, Berken, Hernandez, and Bergesen and actually TEACH them the ins and outs of being a successful pitcher in the major leagues.  By signing a Roy Halladay, they could get just that, a guy who is a winner, knows how to pitch, and could be an extremely positive influence on these young guys. They aren’t going to learn on their own and Jeremy Guthrie sure isn’t enough of a winner to show them anything positive.

I said it before and I’ll say it again.  Get the stench of 12 years of losing baseball away from Oriole Park at Camden Yards. FIRE Dave Trembley and his ENTIRE coaching staff. Do NOT replace them with any ex-Orioles. Sign a top-notch free-agent pitcher who is a proven winner and still knows how to win games.  Sign a power hitting 1st or 3rd baseman who can hit 25 to 30 HR a season. The team needs balance andthey aren’t going to have balance with a lineup of mostly 2nd and 3rd year players. They need that veteran winning presence in the locker room.

The Orioles have lots of dead weight hanging on to the 40 man roster. Mora, Huff andBaez are gone after the season if not sooner. I’d dump Guthrie, Pie and Ray as well.  They have a good nucleus with Reimold, Jones and Markakis in the outfield, Wieters behind the plate and Bergesen, Hernandez, Johnson, Albers, Bass and Hendricksonall proven to be adequate on the mound. Izturis and Andino have given them decent play at SS, Roberts is going to remain at 2nd unless he gets totally disgusted and wants out of here, and Wiggintonis a valuable utility infielder. The DH is pretty much set with Luke Scott who should get 500 at bats in that position.  Tillman and Matusz are not proven major league starters just yet, but mixing in a few veteran pitchers may help them develop.

I go back to the record. 46-66  .411 baseball, losing 18 of 24 games, and with 28 being the lowest magic number, they could be mathematically eliminated from winning the division by August 31st.  No more excuses from the warehouse, broadcasters, players, coaches, manager or those wearing orange colored glasses or sipping the orange kool-aid!  No more defining moments. The team has given you nothing but a load of garbage since 1997. When are people going to reach the breaking point and be mad enough to not take it anymore?

 Regardless of what the front office feeds you about the not-so-distant promising future, doesn’t the past and present state of Orioles’ baseball make you mad and less willing to forgive them for making a mockery of the team you love as the losing continues?

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As Trembley rolls under the losing orange bus, I’ll defend him…

Posted on 02 August 2009 by Nestor Aparicio

Watching the post-game press conference with Dave Trembley today has been illuminating. The Orioles are really reeling. The pitchers gave up 23 hits today. They used six pitchers who gave up a collective 18 runs. Their No. 1 starter in the on the disabled list. Next up, they’re apparently bringing in their No. 1 prospect in the organization, Brian Matusz, for Tuesday night and the manager is taking massive heat.

Today they were beaten 18-10 and swept while nearly 100,000 Red Sox fans rolled into Camden Yards this weekend and booed his young players while they floundered.

Before the game, his all-but-washed up veteran and emotional third basemen rolled him under the bus in a pre-game tirade that will go down as legendary.

Melvin Mora went on and on about “respect.” It was about as bad of a thing as you could possibly do to a manager in the middle of a bad stretch.

But I can’t blame this mess on Dave Trembley at this point.

As a matter of fact, since I’ve called for some clarity on his situation a few weeks ago I’ve honestly been tremendously impressed with how he’s conducted himself publicly amidst the losing.

I almost feel sorry for him. But for some reason, he’s not as testy in his post-game press conferences and I’m actually learning a lot as a fan. He’s been honest, decent and even-keeled during this stretch showing patience and concern and sharing real information and real management skills publicly.

You learn a lot more about teams and players and people when teams lose. Everyone’s a helluva winner.

Right now, Trembley’s team is losing and he’s taking the heat with dignity and respect for the media and the fans.

He’s explaining things and doing it honestly. That’s all I can ask for.

Melvin Mora says he deserves more respect. In my opinion, Dave Trembley and the Orioles fans deserve more production.

Here are some of Dave Trembley’s post-game quotes from today:

“I’m just glad our guys didn’t quit. I’m real pleased about that. We didn’t pitch well. To say we didn’t pitch well is an understatement. It wasn’t our day. Had some great at bats. Ran the bases well. They hit the cover off it.

“We’ll get it figured out. I had to extend some guys today. Hendrickson threw 30 pitches last night, gets extended today.”

On Jason Berken: “It’s been hard on him. I’m sure it’s been real difficult situation for him. He’s stuck and we’ve gotta do something to get him out. He’s in neutral and we’ve got to help him.”

On today’s strike zone and the umpires: “I’ve been suspended and paid an awful lot of money. I’m not going to comment on that.”

Zaun: “Who wants to lose your catcher in the 3rd inning of a game? It was a quick trigger.”

On the losing and the poor play: “It’s a lot tougher for them than it is for me. They’re doing the best they can. They didn’t get it done. I’m sure they feel absolutely terrible.”

On Mora and whether they’ve reached an understanding: “I don’t know. I don’t talk through the press. Here’s where I’m coming from: You show up to the ballpark and expect to play. And you do the very best you can all the time. And if you don’t play, you stay prepared to play. It’s about the team and it’s never about one guy.

And all of you people are very sharp and know how we do things. I’m not going to talk through the newspaper or the TV.”

“You pull for your guys. You want them to do well.

“We’ve got a bunch of young guys here. Don’t let the performance and the bad numbers make you think that you don’t belong here or that you shouldn’t be here or you should take a step back. Learn from it and prepare to pitch in four or five days.

“They know what their stats are. They know their performance. They know it better than you and me. And they’re reminded of it constantly. We’ve got to do something to help Berken and try to do something in the best interest of the team.

“You do what’s in the best interest of that person and the team.”

ON THE ENTIRE MORA SITUATION, PRIOR TO THE GAME

“I’m disappointed that he feels that way,” Trembley said.

“Melvin’s been a very good player for a long time. We don’t show disrespect toward anybody.

“I don’t look at things from that side. I don’t look at things from the negative or bad side. I try to do what’s best for the team. I try to do what’s best for each individual, but for the team, as well.

“It’s too bad that people’s feelings are hurt or feel disrespected and all that. That has never been my intent. I’m going to do the best I can for the team. I’ve never taken that stance to be personal toward anybody, and I think everybody understands that.

“I’m trying to help people. I’m not trying to hurt anybody. If I give a guy a day off, guys who are up there in age, they’ve played a long time, guys who are struggling, I’m trying to help them. I’m not looking to hurt them.”

TODAY’S BOX SCORE

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Melvin Mora: how many times?

Posted on 13 June 2009 by Jason Jubb

Once again he did it. Melvin Mora has managed to make a horrible base running decision. In the 7th inning with no outs, and the tying run just crossing the plate, Melvin Mora decided to go against one of baseball’s oldest rules.

NEVER make the first or third out at third base.

The part that kills me is that he was out by about 20 feet.

It’s ridiculous and it happens week after week. Mora may have the lowest baseball IQ I have ever seen in watching 30+ years of baseball.

Can anyone name someone worse?

I thought I had seen Mora’s worst a few years ago when he was thrown out at home as the last out in the 9th inning trying to score on a sac fly in a 3-1 game, but he just keeps me amazed with what he will do next.

Hopefully this is the last year I have to see this since his contract involves a club buyout next year. If not, my blood pressure may not be able to handle it.

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Bird watching & no hoisting of goblet in Pittsburgh

Posted on 09 June 2009 by Nestor Aparicio

10:42 p.m. — Bring on Game 7! The Pittsburgh Penguins have been plenty feisty daing back to Game 7 in Washington, D.C. in what feels like a lifetime ago. It wasn’t the most exciting first period in Stanley Cup history, but the third period tonight at The Igloo was spectacular. Action, back and forth and up and down the ice. The game almost was tied with just 13 seconds remaining on a close one.

It was Stanley Cup magic. The Penguins and the city of Pittsburgh are 60 minutes away from a second civic championship in five months. Disgusting!

Meanwhile, Brad Bergesen did a nice job tonight against Seattle. The Birds won 3-1. Nolan Reimold hit a big fly. Melvin Mora had one interfered with in the first inning. It was a good, necessary win for the Birds.

8:40 p.m. — I’m in the midst of a typical spring night of wearing out the “previous” on my Comcast remote as I go back and forth between the Orioles-Mariners and Red Wings-Penguins.

The sky is a beautiful blood orange over downtown tonight and the Orioles game has been strange and the Red Wings look poised to hoist Lord Stanley’s chalice on enemy ice once again. Imagine these cockroaches from Pittsburgh having to watch the Red Wings raise The Cup at the Igloo for the second year in a row in front of the Steel City faithful.

Imagine the indignity! (But, it couldn’t happen to nicer folks that our neighbors in Pittsburgh!)

As for the Orioles, if you didn’t see the fan interference in the first inning on a near-home run for Melvin Mora (coincidentally, the kid was wearing an orange Mora No. 6 freebie giveaway that apparently no one knew about) you need to check it out. It was a Jeffrey Maier special, but when the umpires reconvened they rescinded a two-run homer call and the Orioles were suddenly only up 1-0 instead of 3-nil.

It looks like there’s less than 10,000 in the park tonight and the storm that rolled through town at dinner was biblical. Just horrendous where I was in Towson and White Marsh.

I don’t know if I’ll blog all night but I’ve been watching and I just felt like writing. It’s been a long week already and we’re making a lot of changes at WNST and you’ll see this site really come to life over the next few weeks.

Lots of work behind the scenes lately.

But tonight — for a beautiful Tuesday night — I’m watching hockey and baseball and enjoying it immensely!

Nolan Reimold just turned on one and the Birds are up 2-0. Also, my buddy Ed Frankovic keeps texting me from Hershey with Bears-Manitoba updates. Apparently, the Bears are losing.

Red Wings and Penguins are nil. Been a sleepy first period by Stanley Cup Finals standards.

A big night of fun sports…

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May Orioles report card

Posted on 02 June 2009 by Keith Melchior

Here’s my May Orioles report card.

Brian Roberts – A … still the catalyst on the team. A very solid player

Adam Jones – A+… He still plays too shallow in CF sometimes and balls fly over his head, but he has been a pleasant surprise. With the solid 2 months he’s had, he definitely deserves All-Star recognition.

Nick Markakis – B+..production has fallen off a bit, stuck out a few too many times with runners on base, deserves All-Star recognition too.

Aubrey Huff - B.. playing a solid 1st base, hoping he’ll heat it up soon. If he does, he is the first one I’d look to trade out.

Melvin Mora – C.. I don’t think he’s 100%. He’s turned into a singles hitter as his power numbers dwindle.

Luke Scott – B+.. In a heck of a hot streak as of late, so they’ll probably trade him in July. He’s just what they Orioles need.

Nolan Reimold – B..(qualifies for an incomplete) He probably saved his job in LF and his spot on the team when he hit that GW HR last week.  He could hit better in his sleep than Felix Pie. He was helped by Lou Montanez’ injury and trip to the DL. Here’s hoping he gets settled in .

Gregg Zaun – F.. Did playing on an artificial surface pad this guys numbers? He has lost it at the plate and behind the plate, and rather quickly.

Ty Wigginton – B.. not playing every day hurts his ability to perform consistently, but he is an adequate utility player. Much better than the other 3

Felix Pie – F.. He should be sent to Norfolk so he can play every day and work on his game. Sitting on the bench here in Baltimore isn’t helping. When Lou Montanez returns from the DL, I’ll drive Pie to Norfolk.

Cesar Izturis – C.. has been pretty decent in the field and producing at the plate is all you can ask for at this position. They got him for his defense

Robert Andino – C.. not lighting it up but he’s not supposed to. He’s a “band-aid player” in case of injuries. There’s no need for him to have to play once or twice a week.

Jeremy Guthrie – B.. has shown flashes but still somewhat inconsistent and struggles to get into 7th inning

Rich Hill – B+.. a pleasant surprise, so McPhail is batting .500 with his ex-Cubs

Koji Uehara – C.. guts alone can’t win ball games, ask Kyle Boller. Runs into trouble after 5 innings way too often. Hopefully he can improve his stamina when off the DL.

Jim Johnson  – B.. looks like he picked up where he left off last season before he was shut down. Dominant at times.

Danys Baez – B-.. Quite different than the guy who couldn’t get anyone out 2 years ago, but he still lacks that consistency that middle relievers need. Probably trade material come July.

Brian Bass – B+.. talk about a guy who seemingly rose from the dead. He was probably on his way out but he turned it around in a hurry after a disasterous April. He has become a solid middle reliever. Hope he stays that way.

Matt Albers – C.. Looks like his choice to rehab instead of surgery is working  as has held his own.  Let’s see what June has in store for him

Jamie Walker – F.. after a decent April, that meltdown over the balk last month transformed  him back into the  Jamie Walker of 2008.

George Sherrill – B.. not the All-Star he was at this time last year, but the best option they have since Chris Ray blew up and did his Walker routine.

Bergesen, Berken, Hernandez – Incomplete – They all look like they belong with the big club thus far.  We’ll see how they progress in June.

Matt Wieters – A+ for hype…..incomplete for grade. rocky start of a major league career going 2-11. Once he settles in and plays more, he’ll be fine.

Dave Trembley – C- .. He locked himself into a rut but playing the B lineup on Sundays and usually the last game in a series. You have to have players who can accept that role and can step in and play to make it work for you. If he is that stuck on getting his reserves in a game, then why not stagger them, that way you don’t have all 3 in the game at the same time…i.e. rest Izturis Friday and play Saturday and Sunday and rest Mora on Saturday and play on Sunday, etc etc.. … His bench players are terrible. Pinch hitting a .200 hitter for a .198 hitter? Why bother?  The team is 5 games under .500 at this point, no thanks to Trembley. The top of the lineup all hit and hit and hit and won games despite the rocky pitching efforts. Some of Trembley’s in-game decisions are highly questionable, he is stubborn about his reserves playing time, and his record on Sundays/ final game of a series is worthy of a firing if he can’t turn that trend around. If he’s trying to win baseball games, he is doing it with smoke and mirrors.

Team Overall – C.. the recent 5 game win streak helped. With their lineup, they should beat teams like Washington and teams that are reeling and slumping.  The comeback win over Toronto was impressive, but the 2 losses to Detroit over the weekend were tough to swallow. How they fare in June and July with the development of the rookies will go a long way in determining whether they are serious in contending in the future or will settle for mediocrity. Hanging onto players like Felix Pie, Gregg Zaun  and Robert Andino drag them down. having 3 bench players hitting a combined .198 gives Trembley no options in late innings or against NL teams. Perhaps Baez and Koji can be used as pinch-hitters. Pie should go to Norfolk, Zaun and Andino can just go, period.  The Orioles are better than advertised at times. Now it appears they have a log-jam on the mound when Koji returns from the DL.

Question – What ever happened to Mike Flanagan?

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Orioles Embarrass Baltimore Once Again

Posted on 11 May 2009 by Neal Bortmes

The Orioles appear to have already given up this season.  Thus far the team has been a complete embarrassment.

 

Let’s first address the base running.  Even little league players are taught how to not slide over the bag, Adam Jones you should be ashamed of yourself.  How can you be playing for a MLB franchise (if you can still call the Orioles that) and not know the pitch count?

 

Melvin Mora continues to daydream while on the base paths as he was once again picked off.  He helped end what looked like a very promising inning early with his idiocy.  He has always been a poor base runner and his lack of concentration continues to surprise.  All of the apologists cannot use the excuse that he is young because he is in his late 30’s for crying out loud.

 

I want to state again for the record Dave Trembley this is not the NL stop all of this hit-and-run nonsense we have capable hitters in the top part of the lineup.  We also have players adept enough to steal a base straight up.  Stop putting our team in difficult spots when it is not necessary.

 

Trembley continues to mismanage the bullpen and it is costing us dearly.  If our team had not been so inept at selecting managers over the last decade I would probably be clamoring for his ouster but as it is we need some sort of stability going forward.  

 

The worst problem has been the defense.  Thought to be one of the strengths of an admittedly bad team it has by far been the worst facet of the 2009 Orioles.  Many of our defensive “stars” have not played up to their potential including the all glove no bat shortstop Izturis and the normally sure handed Nick Markakis.

 

A lack of hustle on defense caused the loss yesterday.  I believe that the blame can be squarely placed on the shoulders of Brian Roberts.  If Roberts had not treated Cervelli’s infield grounder as a sure out the seventh inning would have been over and the Yankees wouldn’t have scored.  Robert’s lack of hustle proved to be the downfall.  He wasn’t the only player not hustling Markakis took his sweet time getting to the double hit by Cano in the second.

 

I also think Damon is back on the juice just like he was during his time in Boston.  Damon was a singles hitter and a speed guy when he came up with the Royals and now all of the sudden in the twilight of his career he has nine homers in only the first fifth of the season.  Good to see that MLB is taking the Yankees and Sox to task on the substance abuse policy just like all of the other clubs (sarcasm for those of you who may be like Dr. Sheldon Cooper and not understand).

 

I was completely embarrassed on Sunday at the game.  The droves of Yankees fans once again invaded Camden Yards and once again Dave Trembley put out his weak Sunday lineup so they could roll over and die.  It is like beating a dead horse with the ushers over there but they treat the Yankees fans like gold and it is sickening.  Having to year Derek Jeter chants and crap gets old after a while.

 

I know Ty Wigginton had to go into the game because Luke Scott was injured but he should never face right-handed pitching.  Wigginton was brought in here with the sole purpose of hitting lefties.  He is simply overmatched by righties and he is a liability in the field.

 

 

How can Jamie Walker look himself in the mirror everyday?  He is a lefty specialist who can’t get out lefties.  What purpose does he really serve other than to serve up homeruns to the opposition?

 

Uehara’s good start was ruined by the other players on the team and for that I am also ashamed.  I really hope the Orioles can get their act together soon because even over the boos Mark Teixeira has been able to break out against us. 

 

If Luke Scott is forced to the DL then I really hope the O’s do the right thing and call up Reimold. 

 

Thanks for ruining a perfect day for baseball Orioles!  Let’s go get Tampa.

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Orioles make it two in a row with mini-sweep of Twins

Posted on 08 May 2009 by Nestor Aparicio

It wasn’t a textbook victory last night for the Orioles (12-17) but they’ll take wins anywhere they can find them. After an evening of soggy weather and a six-inning win on Wednesday night, the Birds came back to Camden Yards and finished the mini-sweep with a 5-4 win over the Twins led by Melvin Mora and unlikely Lou Montanez.

Mora homered in the second and got on base in the eighth before Montanez singled to left to account for the game-winning RBI.

The usual speedy work of Brad Bergesen on the hill picked up the pace of the game, but he was in trouble most of the evening and worked some Houdini magic to avoid big innings. All told, the Twins managed 14 hits off of O’s pitching — including 11 off Bergesen in just six innings — but could never plate runs in bunches.

Reliever Chris Ray struggled in the 7th inning, allowing the Twins to tie the game after inheriting a one-run lead, but Jim Johnson was stellar in the 8th inning to vulture a victory and George Sherrill managed to finish a sweaty 9th to earn fifth save of the year.

Afterward, manager Dave Trembley gave praise liberally, especially to Mora whom he discussed in his pre-game speech.

Prepare the pinstripes: the Yankees (13-15) come to town mired in an early-season funk for three games at Camden Yards this weekend.

Tonight it’s a rematch of the Opening Day starters: C.C. Sabathia (1-3. 4.85) vs. Jeremy Guthrie (2-2, 5.05).

On Saturday, it’ll be Phil Hughes (1-1, 2.70) and Adam Eaton (1-3, 7.18) and Sunday afternoon Joba Chamberlain (1-1, 3.77) will face Koji Uehara (2-3, 4.42).

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