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Chapter 6: Baseball punched me a ticket to see The World

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Chapter 6: Baseball punched me a ticket to see The World

Posted on 10 March 2012 by Nestor Aparicio

(Originally posted as a prelude to the “Free The Birds” walkout in Sept. 2006, this is Part 6 of a 19 Chapter Series on How Baseball and the Orioles berthed WNST.net.)

One day my Pop came home from work in the Spring of 1983 and during dinner announced that we should go on a vacation in the upcoming summer.

Other than Venezuela in 1972, when we took my lone airplane ride, and Disney World in 1978 when we took Amtrak, I had never been much past Ocean City (I had only been there a handful of times because my Uncle Omar had a joint on 28th Street Bayside behind the Jolly Roger amusement park).

We usually just went “home” to South Carolina to visit my Mom’s family and chilled while she visited all her old neighbors and friends. My Pop and I would spend those summer days almost entirely at the Abbeville Civic Center. It wasn’t at all like OUR Baltimore Civic Center with seats and stuff. It was just a little gym with a lobby and my Pop and I would shoot baskets for hours in that hotbox gym. There wasn’t anything else to do in the tiny little South Carolina town. All of my relatives were older than my Mom and she’s now 87. So every one of them was well into their 70′s then and have since passed away.

My Aunt Earline made eggs and bacon and biscuits in the morning and fried chicken in the afternoon. Her sister, my Aunt Edna — she was a cool old lady, she took me to the NWA wrestling matches in Greenwood, S.C. one night! — made the world’s best chocolate fudge (I recently found the recipe!) and fresh peach ice cream in a churn for dessert on alternating days. We picked pecans off the tree in the back yard on Ellis Street and tossed them into a batch of that incredible fudge. And I would throw a super-sized Superball (they were bigger than the normal ones and very rock solid) against the siding of my Aunt Eleanor’s house up the street, pretending I was Nolan Ryan when I wasn’t in that hot gym.

That was vacation for me. There were no other kids, and the black/white thing in Abbeville, S.C., even then in the late 1970′s, was kind of in the backdrop as well. I ran around, dreamed and chased these weird, techni-color grasshoppers they had all over the place.

Kind of Napoleon Dynamite pathetic, huh?

But it’s really true, as I look back upon it.

I was bored as hell (except when my Aunt Edna was involved) and all I really wanted to do was stay at home in Colgate and play baseball on the church lot with my friends, anyway. But I did get to eat some great food in South Carolina. And, one time, a pretty Southern girl painted an orange Clemson paw print on my face at a park called Hickory Knob State Park!

So, when my Pop announced a chance at a trip, he looked to me. I was 14, it was the summer of 1983 and where would I want to go or what would I want to do?
Clearly, it had to involve baseball. And if involved baseball in 1983, it definitely 

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Jones’ walk-off bomb better late than never for Britton in Orioles’ 5-3 win

Posted on 25 May 2011 by admin

Somewhere around the fifth inning of Tuesday night’s game between the Orioles and the Kansas City Royals, I quipped there was only one thing missing from Zach Britton’s repertoire during an amazing first two months of his big league career.

Developing a pitch that would score some runs to help his cause.

Though his six innings of work against the Royals paled in comparison to his prior two starts in which he didn’t allow an earned run over 16 innings, Britton walked off the mound trailing 3-0 after escaping a bases-loaded jam in the sixth by getting Alex Gordon to pop to short. The Baltimore lineup had failed to score a single run for the young lefty in his last 27 1/3 innings of work.

Britton appeared on his way to suffering his third loss after allowing three runs and a career-high nine hits on a night in which he struggled to command his sinker and changeup. However, he had managed to keep his team in the game against opposing rookie Danny Duffy, who had stifled the Orioles through the first five innings of the game. Much like his prior three starts, scoring opportunities had been there — particularly a botched fifth inning in which Robert Andino bunted into a double play with two runners on and no outs — but the Orioles continued shooting blanks.

That is, until Britton reached the dugout in the middle of the sixth with his night finished after 101 pitches.

After wasting back-to-back brilliant outings from the young southpaw, the Orioles finally broke through in the sixth as Matt Wieters and Luke Scott plated the first two runs with Britton still in the game since his victory over the Chicago White Sox on May 1. At the time, it wasn’t enough to get the starter off the hook, but it put the Orioles in position for the ninth-inning heroics to follow.

Facing Royals closer Joakim Soria, who hadn’t allowed a run in 12 career outings against Baltimore, pinch-hitter Felix Pie tied the game with an RBI-double and Adam Jones blasted a two-run homer to dead center to give the Orioles an improbable 5-3 win, their first win of the season when trailing after eight innings. Though it didn’t net Britton a victory, it was a small token of support after nearly a month of attrition.

And it came against one of the better closers in the American League, albeit one who’s struggled in the first two months of the season.

“Sometimes, you’ve got to do it against the good guys,” manager Buck Showalter said. “We talk about it all the time. I don’t want to hear people talk about, ‘Oh, we face such good pitching in the American League East every night.’

“Guess what? That’s what it is. You’ve got to beat the good guys, too. That’s why they call it the big leagues. I don’t like our chances every night down by one run against [Soria], I can tell you that, but we were fortunate.”

As Jones was mobbed by his teammates at home plate in celebration, the Orioles had finally broken through to pick up their rookie pitcher.

And earn their most exciting victory of the season.

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Live from Camden Yards: Orange Crush chat at 7 as Britton seeks run support against Kansas City

Posted on 24 May 2011 by Luke Jones

**Join us in the Orange Crush live chat at 7:00 as the Orioles welcome the Kansas City Royals to town in the opener of a three-game set with rookie Zach Britton taking the hill in search of his elusive sixth win.**

BALTIMORE — What’s a guy have to do to get a little bit of run support?

Despite a string of 19 1/3 innings in which he hasn’t allowed an earned run, rookie Zach Britton has been stuck on five wins since May 1, the last time the Orioles managed to score a run while the lefty was still in the game. His 2.14 earned run average ranks sixth in the American League, and Britton will look for a little run support as he faces the Kansas City Royals in the first of a three-game set at Camden Yards.

Britton will be opposed by fellow rookie southpaw Danny Duffy, who will be making his second big league start after allowing two runs and walking six in four innings against the Texas Rangers in his debut last Wednesday. Duffy is a former third-round pick of the 2007 amateur draft and one of the more heralded prospects in the Kansas City system.

With three games against the Royals — losers of seven of their last nine — preceding a six-game West Coast trip against Oakland and Seattle, the Orioles have a golden opportunity to string together wins and eclipse the .500 mark for the first time since mid-April. Simply put, these are the opponents a young team has to thrive against if it wants to be taken seriously as a team on the rise.

In other news, Brian Matusz will make his third rehab start Friday at Norfolk. The lefty is expected to pitch six or seven innings or eclipse 90 pitches, whichever comes first. If all goes well, Matusz could join the club on the road trip and make his 2011 debut to begin June, a welcome sight for Orioles fans. Of course, the Orioles could elect to have him pitch one more rehab start before activating him from the disabled list.

In other injury-related news, Derrek Lee will head to Sarasota on Wednesday to continue rehabbing his strained oblique. He is eligible to come off the 15-day disabled list on June 1 if he’s deemed ready.

Second baseman Brian Roberts has seen a specialist regarding his lingering symptoms stemming from a concussion sustained in Boston last Monday night. He has not taken part in any baseball-related activity since the injury, and the club awaits word regarding his status.

Here are tonight’s starting lineups:

Kansas City
LF Alex Gordon
CF Melky Cabrera
1B Eric Hosmer
RF Jeff Francoeur
DH Billy Butler
3B Wilson Betemit
2B Mike Aviles
C Brayan Pena
SS Alcides Escobar

SP Danny Duffy (0-0, 4.50 ERA)

Baltimore
2B Robert Andino
CF Adam Jones
RF Nick Markakis
DH Vladimir Guerrero
C Matt Wieters
LF Nolan Reimold
3B Mark Reynolds
SS J.J. Hardy
1B Brandon Snyder

SP Zach Britton (5-2, 2.14 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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Top 20 moments in Camden Yards history: No. 15

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Top 20 moments in Camden Yards history: No. 15

Posted on 21 March 2011 by Luke Jones

With the start of the 20th season at Oriole Park at Camden Yards only two weeks away, I take a look back at the top 20 moments in the history of the ballpark. Selected moments had to relate directly to the action on the field at the time. No orchestrated events such as World Series anniversary celebrations or Orioles Hall of Fame inductions were eligible.

Previous selections:
20. Matt Wieters’ debut
19. Hideo Nomo tosses the only no-hitter in Oriole Park history
18. Orioles rally from nine-run deficit against Boston
17. 30-3
16. Buck Showalter takes the helm

15. Raffy goes deep in first game with Orioles – April 4, 1994

His disgraced name will forever be linked to steroids and the infamous pointing of a finger while testifying at a congressional hearing on performance-enhancing drugs months before failing a drug test in the final year of his career — as a member of the Orioles.

Congress

He’ll likely never earn a spot in the National Baseball Hall of Fame or even induction to the Orioles Hall of Fame after serving a 10-day suspension for testing positive for the anabolic steroid stanozolol only days after accumulating his 3,000th hit in 2005.

But there were happier times for first baseman Rafael Palmeiro, especially when he arrived in Baltimore the first time around in 1994.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=br08YLrrvG4[/youtube]

The Orioles had completed two consecutive third-place finishes in 1992 and 1993 and entered their first offseason under new majority owner Peter Angelos, who appeared committed to bringing a championship to Baltimore for the first time since 1983. A free-agent spending spree began, with general manager Roland Hemond inking third baseman Chris Sabo, starting pitcher Sid Fernandez, and closer Lee Smith to contracts.

However, Palmeiro was the shining jewel of the class as the 29-year-old first baseman had just been kicked to the curb by the Texas Rangers, who ironically bested the Orioles in the Will Clark sweepstakes. The Orioles received the overwhelmingly superior “consolation” prize when Palmeiro signed a five-year, $30 million contract on Dec. 12, 1993.

The sweet-swinging lefty made his Orioles debut on April 4, 1994 as fans were thrilled to have a franchise bat in the heart of the order to take the pressure off veterans Cal Ripken and Harold Baines.

Palmeiro 94

Palmeiro had made great impressions with his new club all spring, homering in the first intrasquad game and the first exhibition game, but now was his chance to impress the hometown fans. With the Orioles leading the Kansas City Royals, 5-1, in the bottom of the seventh, the sweet-swinging lefty homered to right to cap off a perfect afternoon, earning a standing ovation from the 47,459 on hand.

Mike Mussina pitched the Orioles to a 6-3 victory with Smith earning the save, but the day belonged to Palmeiro as he put the painful divorce from the Rangers behind him and began the greatest five-year stretch of any player in franchise history (.292, 182 home runs, 553 runs batted in).

His arrival was the first of several big-name acquisitions over the next few seasons, leading to the Orioles’ only two postseason appearances (1996 and 1997) of the Camden Yards era. No player would play a bigger role in that success than Palmeiro.

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Thursday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Thursday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 19 August 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Thursday!

It’s a Happy Thursday for me because Deadspin introduced me to what is unquestionably the greatest sport ever created by human beings or any other species throughout history. It’s called the “Fight Football League” and it is some sort of combination of football, rugby and Mixed Martial Arts…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LXMsmxWRLpY[/youtube]

Here’s actual footage of a match as well…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=li9hP6z5DLo[/youtube]

Apparently the sport only exists in Italy, which only goes to prove BASICALLY what we knew all along…Italians are better than everyone. Go ahead and call us “divers” again there Drew Forrester.

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. The AP’s David Ginsburg says Jeremy Guthrie beat up as Orioles fell to Seattle Mariners at Oriole Park at Camden Yards

One of the things we’ve grown accustomed to under Buck Showalter here in Charm City is that he’s going to let his starters pitch.

Last night may not have been the most appropriate time to do that.

Jeremy Guthrie has clearly been this team’s most reliable starter in 2010, but he wasn’t great last night.

Losing 2 of 3 at home to the M’s doesn’t mean doesn’t mean the bloom is off the rose for the new skipper, but it does mean that there is still a level of reality to be understood.

This is a bad team-no matter the manager. We just hope they can continue to be SLIGHTLY better because the skipper continues to light a fire under the asses of as many players as possible.

I think a lot of us had hoped we were past the time when this team would drop 2 of 3 at home to a team like the Mariners. I guess the reality is that they at least showed some effort last night.

2. The AP/WNST.net offer numerical evidence of loss

Hey-Matt Wieters hit a home run. How about that???

Other than that, not a whole lot to see here. So why don’t you take a look at Jessica Hall from Rukus magazine and then we’ll regroup after! (Thanks Guyism!)

jessicahall

3. MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli says Manny Machado could report to Sarasota as early as Sunday

I would take this time to warn that this ISN’T Matt Wieters. Machado is coming out of high school in Miami-and no matter how many people compare him to A-Rod, it’s going to take some time. Wieters was coming out of college, and didn’t have as much to prove at Bowie and Norfolk. Machado is going to have to start in the Gulf Coast League, and probably has a LOT of A ball ahead of him in the next year or 2…or 3…or 4.

Just ask Billy Rowell. But we’ll get back to him.

I’d also like to take this to warn that no matter how nice it is described by Don Chavez, the Mila Kunis-Natalie Portman kissing scene PROBABLY won’t be enough to make you want to go see the movie Black Swan-even if it was made by the same guy who made “The Wrestler”. I’m just being honest…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T9DevdBithM[/youtube]

4. NBCSports.com’s Bert Blyleven says Buck Showalter can only help O’s ‘so much’

I hate to keep saying this.

If the organization does NOT go get real Major League Baseball players to improve the roster this offseason, nothing is going to change. Even with Buck Showalter as manager, a bad team will lose…like how they’ve lost 2 of 3 to the lowly Mariners this week at home.

If they go get real players AND continue to develop their own (not one OR the other), they’ll have a chance to improve. Even in the mighty AL East. That’s not Glenn Clark saying that, that’s a should-be Hall of Fame pitcher saying that.

5. The Sun’s Dean Jones Jr. says Billy Rowell had big night for Frederick Keys in win over Wilmington Blue Rocks on farm

And before we move on from the Birds, a couple of things…

-The Orioles open up a 4 game series with the Texas Rangers tonight at OPACY; first pitch between Brian Matusz and Colby Lewis is at 7:05pm and the game can be seen on MASN.

-Reliever Jim Johnson is slated to make a rehab appearance for the Frederick Keys starting tonight. I’m not sure what Jim Johnson’s role will be with this team moving forward-but it will be good to at least have him in the mix.

6. WNST.net’s Luke Jones says Oniel Cousins carted from McDaniel College field with ‘headache’ during Ravens Training Camp Wednesday

I’ll take John Harbaugh at his word, but I think this could remain an issue. The bigger issue is that with Jared Gaither, Tony Moll and Cousins all banged up-the team could be left needing Ramon Harewood to play the great majority of the game Saturday night at FedEx Field.

I KNOW the team wants to leave Marshal Yanda at RG and use Chris Chester as a reserve interior lineman-but I get the feeling they have to at least CONSIDER switching Yanda outside for the good of the entire unit at this point.

Hopefully Gaither and Cousins are both ready to go on September 13 against the New York Jets, but I’m not convinced both will be just yet.

7. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says CB Lardarius Webb could be activated from PUP list ‘soon’

Wait a second…what is this?

Good news??? From Westminster???

I’m just not so sure I believe it!

In all honesty, it would make a WORLD of difference for the Baltimore Ravens if Lardarius Webb were to begin practicing soon-as it would significantly improve his chances of being on the field in East Rutherford for the Monday Night Football opener.

No matter when Lardarius Webb is activated, I don’t necessarily expect to see him on the field next week against the New York Giants or on the field in two weeks against the St. Louis Rams. That being said, none of that matters.

All that matters is whether or not he can see the field at the Meadowlands. If he can, it helps everything about this team…but you already know that.

You also probably already know that Sheridyn Fisher is a LOVELY gal. (Thanks The Smoking Jacket!)

fisher

8. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Ryan Mink says CB Fabian Washington will play Saturday night against Washington Redskins

MORE good news?!?!? WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON HERE!?!?!?

Before we move on from the Ravens, a few things…

-Your LAST chance to view Ravens practice this year is THIS AFTERNOON at 2:45pm. Practice will be closed to the public tomorrow, and the heads back to Owings Mills next week. If you had wanted to get out for Camp, make sure you do it THIS AFTERNOON. Luke Jones is on the scene, he’ll be checking in with Thyrl Nelson and Rex Snider throughout the day.

-Rookie DT Arthur Jones announced on Twitter that he was fined $5,000 for an illegal block during the Carolina Panthers game last Thursday. If I ever Tweet about a $5,000 fine-you can be sure that I’m doing it bankrupt. (You can follow US on Twitter @WNST.)

-Did you miss Ravens Safety/potential punt returner Tom Zbikowski with Thyrl Nelson yesterday on “The Mobtown Sports Beat” here on AM1570 WNST? Make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault today to check it out! Some other things you can check out in the Audio Vault include:

  • Audio from Training Camp Wednesday-including John Harbaugh and WR David Reed
  • Washington Redskins CB (and former Maryland Terrapins CB) Kevin Barnes-who joined Rex Snider Wednesday afternoon to preview Saturday night’s game
  • Steve Wyche (NFL.com)-who talked Brett Favre and more with Rex Wednesday
  • Paul White (USA Today)-who talked Buck Showalter, Orioles with Thyrl
  • Brian McRae (WHB Kansas City, former Royals OF and Baseball Tonight analyst)-who went around baseball with Thryl
  • Larry McReynolds (FOX NASCAR Analyst)-who talked some bumping and grinding with Rex
  • All of the Baltimore sports media tryouts you’ve heard on “The Morning Reaction” with Nestor Aparicio

It’s all in the Audio Vault, so once again your day is planned. I’m much too good to you…

9. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Terps coach Ralph Friedgen planned to meet new University President Wallace D. Loh Wednesday afternoon in College Park

And for more on the hiring of Wallace D. Loh and ALL things Maryland-related, make sure you check out this week’s edition of the “D1scast” with myself and Patrick Stevens. You can hear it in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault today, and it’s worth checking out.

And while we’re on the topic of Maryland, Patrick also recently passed along that Gary Williams’ basketball team would be facing North Florida December 29 at 8pm at Comcast Center. So…you know…go ahead and cancel your New Year’s Eve trip plans. You can’t miss that!

10. Tribune Newspapers says Michael Phelps won 200 meter butterfly at Pan Pacifics, remained unsatisfied

And finally, I leave you with this.

Geekologie says KFC is testing a new sandwich called “The Skinwich”, which is apparently a sandwich made entirely of fried chicken skin.

Yes. I’m serious…

skinwich

This is the reason why the United States of America is the greatest country on the face of the planet.

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Friday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Friday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 30 July 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Friday!

It’s a Happy Friday for me because after the Ultimate Frisbee highlight on Deadspin the other day that I posted in my “Top 10 Baseball Distractions” column; apparently Deadspin got the idea that Ultimate Frisbee highlights may be even cooler than videos of guys getting dunked on…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kst2yrNJolY[/youtube]

Freaking awesome. I want to be exactly like Beaufort Kittredge. Other than the name-as long as I get to keep the trust fund.

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. WNST.net’s Luke Jones says Orioles ‘finally’ hired Buck Showalter as manager

I’ll save you the “I told you they’d hire him after the Ravens reported to Westminster” comments. Wait. Sorry!

I guess the “breaking” part of this “breaking news” is lessened because we knew this was coming-having been reported by Ken Rosenthal as a “done deal” before the All-Star Game. (Edit from GMC: Ken Rosenthal would know.) But it is still significant when a team hires a manager, even if it is a team that hasn’t played a meaningful game in well over a decade.

A handful of folks in town are excited about Showalter. The rest of the folks in town would only be excited if he could play CB. Count me in the group that’s interested, but by no means excited. I’d be excited if he was bringing Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling with him; as well as Mark Teixeira and Nelson Cruz. Otherwise, I’ll withhold excitement until I know that they’re going to get some real players.

Connie Mack would need better players to win in Charm City-and from everything I can tell, Buck Showalter is no Connie Mack. But I’d love to see him don a similar hat…

2. WNST.net’s Drew Forrester says Birds hoping Showalter can be ‘miracle worker’

There is a significant question about how much control Showalter is going to have of the organization, specifically personnel. He’s been known to be a control freak, but he’s going to be working for a President of Baseball Operations (Andy MacPhail) who laid the groundwork for the team’s “Plan”, and an owner (Peter Angelos) who has a history of meddling even when it’s been said that he gave up control.

Of course, this is where some will make the argument that the addition of Showalter could be a signal of the end of the MacPhail regime. That could very well be true. I’m not yet sure whether it’s a good thing or a bad thing yet.

If it’s a “miracle worker” the Birds were looking for, I’m not sure why they didn’t consider Francesca Frigo (Thanks Next Round!)…

frigo

3. The AP’s Bernie Wilson says O’s traded Miguel Tejada to San Diego Padres for RHP prospect Wynn Pelzer

In the words of Veronica Corningstone: Miguel Tejada, “Thanks for stopping by.”

There won’t really be too many memories of the 2nd Miguel Tejada tenure in Baltimore-although he played exactly as many meaningful games this time around as he did the first; but the team does get a player in exchange that could end up turning into…something?

Pelzer is by no means a “top prospect” in the Pads’ organization, but is a guy who could offer something moving forward. I talked to a couple of MLB personnel guys last night about Pelzer-and the responses I got ranged from “good arm” to “live arm” to “will be better as a reliever than as a starter” to “big league ready soon” to “needs to match mentally what he has physically.”

I never get too excited about a minor league player (no matter who they are), and that won’t change with Pelzer. Although-he IS a South Carolina guy, so hopefully we can chat about Hootie & The Blowfish. There just isn’t enough of that in the world.

4. WNST.net’s Ryan Chell says part of Andy MacPhail’s reasoning for Tejada trade was to get Josh Bell back to Baltimore

Which is fine-as long as the organization isn’t thinking that they have “the answer” at 3B and can’t consider an upgrade in the offseason. Josh Bell may end up being a very good player; but if the team wants to win-they need real major league players at every position; not a group of guys who might end up being real major league players.

That being said, my guess is that the organization’s brass will do everything in their power to make sure that Bell is the Opening Day 3B in April. If that’s the case, I hope he spends the rest of the year looking like Matt Williams.

I just have a bad feeling it might not happen.

5. The AP says Corey Patterson’s homer, Ty Wigginton’s sac fly lead Birds past Kansas City Royals in 11 innings

Hey Hey! That’s win number 1 after the season ended on Sunday-and it only took extra innings against one of the OTHER worst teams in baseball to get it done!

Brian Matusz threw 3 innings of no-hit ball last night. I’m not really sure what happened after that, but the three innings were really good! (Edit from GMC: Thank God we stopped the whole “Apologist of the Morning” thing. I’d win going away…)

Nice to see Corey Patterson playing the role of “hero” again after that grand slam to tie things up against the Texas Rangers in the 9th a few weeks ago in Arlington. He’ll savor these memories when he’s doing…whatever it is he’ll be doing…next season.

Of course, despite the new regime…I wouldn’t be stunned at all if Corey Patterson lined up in Left Field at Oriole Park at Camden Yards in April 2011…or at least on the bench. He’s exactly the type of player the organization loves.

6. The AP/WNST.net offer numerical evidence of win

I have no idea how to handle this. I’m so used to saying “you don’t want to look at this” that I don’t know how to go about saying “you might actually want to look at this.”

Nick Markakis also homered last night-which has been much to rare this season.

You know what, look at the numbers-celebrate them-and then take a look at Jakki Degg. It’s a win-win! (Thanks Barstool Sports!)

jakkidegg

7. The Sun’s Dean Jones Jr. says Chris Tillman struggled for Norfolk Tides, Joel Guzman homered for Bowie Baysox on farm

Before we move on from the Orioles, a few things:

-The O’s and Royals are back at it in KC tonight. Jake Arrieta faces Sean O’Sullivan-with first pitch from Kauffman Stadium at 8:10pm on MASN2. Like I said yesterday, I’ll go with a split this weekend.

-Did you miss former MLB Scout Frankie Piliere on “The Morning Reaction” with Drew Forrester on AM1570 WNST discussing Wynn Pelzer and other trade deadline stuff? Make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault today to check it out. Other guests included:

  • Craig Calcaterra (NBCSports.com “HardballTalk”)-who went around MLB, touching on Strasburg, Oswalt, etc.
  • Rich Dubroff (Carroll County Times)-who discussed the Showalter hiring and the impact it will have on the Birds
  • Dan Wilcox (Former Ravens TE)-who discussed Training Camp and more

It’s all in the Audio Vault if you want to check it out.

8. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says Todd Heap placed on non-football illness list, Rodelin Anthony & Fabian Washington activated from PUP list

The Fabian Washington news is REALLY good news, and the Todd Heap news really isn’t that bad. The Rodelin Anthony news happened.

This team needs their top corners healthy. With no offense to Cary Williams or Travis Fisher or Walt Harris, they’re just not great options. At least one of them will end up making the team-but this organization is certainly better off not having any of them suit up.

Of course-early reports from practice today say neither Fabian nor Dominique Foxworth were practicing; so we’ll have to follow that. Just when all of the news was starting to be good…

9. USA Today’s Gary Graves says Ravens not ‘shying away’ from Super Bowl discussion as full Training Camp begins at McDaniel College

Nor should they be. They’ve been a Super Bowl contender ever since they acquired Anquan Boldin.

For the record, I’m not shying away from the fact that Shannon James is ridiculously hot despite the fact that she’s wearing a Philadelphia Phillies shirt (Thanks Busted Coverage!)…

shannonjames

10. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Mike Duffy says Ravens owner Bisciotti believes Sergio Kindle will be with Ravens for ‘long time’

Which is why the conversations about liability, etc. earlier this week were so ridiculous. The Ravens want to give Sergio Kindle a contract and are GOING to give Sergio Kindle a contract. He’s going to get plenty of money-but they’re not going to pay him for the time he wasn’t working. The contract structure will be the same, it will just reflect the fact that he wasn’t working for a while.

Questions continue regarding Kindle’s accident. It seems as though folks are accepting the possible narcolepsy explanation from his former Longhorns coach Mack Brown as a factual explanation-which is just as dangerous as accepting any of the possible explanations regarding alcohol, etc. that were thrown around earlier this week.

The fact remains that we still don’t know. Hopefully we will know soon.

11. ESPNNewYork.com’s Ohm Youngmisuk says former ST/WR David Tyree to retire with New York Giants

Eh, one more time, why not?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G-aKfTK2LiM[/youtube]

(Edit from GMC: Watching that again just reminds me how terrible Joe Buck is. It was one of the greatest moments in Super Bowl history and he treated it like it was a routine first down in a regular season game. Ugh.)

And finally, I leave you with this.

“Dinner For Schmucks” opens tonight. It isn’t getting great reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, but Zach Galifianakis is HILARIOUS…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4TrY29ixBGc[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Thursday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Thursday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 29 July 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Thursday!

It’s a Happy Thursday for me because the Bowie Baysox are celebrating “The Dude” tonight at Prince George’s Stadium. And I’m sure all other “Big Lebowski” fans are with me in thinking “Who better to celebrate???” (Edit from GMC: Video VERY MUCH NSFW.)

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ED4VL7W6VdQ[/youtube]

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. WNST.net’s Luke Jones says Terrence Cody passed conditioning test, returned to Ravens practice

Like I said yesterday, “thank God our long civic nightmare is over.”

I’m not particularly worked up about a failed conditioning test. I am a BIT more worked up about the thought that we’ll have to worry about Terrence Cody’s weight/condition for the next few years.

I’m sure there are others (John Harbaugh comes to mind) that are even more concerned about it. Having Haloti Ngata give him a nickname like “Cheeseburger” doesn’t exactly bode well. Of course, it’s not like they didn’t know what they were getting when they picked him in the 2nd round of the NFL Draft. It’s also not like the nickname doesn’t fit.

If I was more of a comedian, I’d have a better “hopefully he’ll be our Cheeseburger in Paradise” Jimmy Buffett-type joke to use here. Instead, I’ll opt to offer a picture of the Boston Blackie Burger from Blackie’s in Chicago-a spot I visited for the first time in my life on the 4th of July. It’s a winner…

blackies

2. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says Texas coach Mack Brown believes Sergio Kindle may have fallen due to narcolepsy

Which could VERY WELL be a legitimate reason.

There were reports around the time of the NFL Draft that Kindle may suffer from narcolepsy and ADD, and had fallen asleep during meetings while he was with the Longhorns. We hadn’t necessarily heard that sleepwalking was an issue; but there is certainly at least a CHANCE it’s true.

If so, it’s probably a less concerning explanation than some other potential explanations that had been thrown around. We won’t know what REALLY happened until Sergio Kindle is able to talk to the media-and even then there will be some who will still wonder exactly what happened last week in Austin.

3. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Mike Duffy says Jared Gaither reported to Training Camp ‘on time’ Wednesday, Terrell Suggs reported ‘slimmer’

I understand that they’re going to say the right thing here; but John Harbaugh said on Monday in the lobby of the Westminster Best Western that he was “looking forward to seeing (Gaither) today.”

Maybe the team didn’t require Gaither to report to Camp early because of his foot injury, but Coach Harbs certainly suggested that he was expecting to see Jared on Monday. Could be a simple miscommunication, could be that the head coach wanted Jared in earlier in the week because he missed OTA’s and is expected to play a different position this year.

The reality is that it doesn’t really matter. Gaither’s in Camp, and as long as he’s on the practice field tomorrow-everything is fine. If he’s still battling the foot problem tomorrow, there will be one more recent drama the team will be dealing with.

You know, because they needed another distraction. Remember when they were having a fairly quiet offseason???

As far as “T-Sizzle” is concerned, it will be interesting to see what he looks like on the practice field as well. As far as defensive improvement is concerned, it is clear that all of it surrounds what type of season Suggs has, especially considering the help that was supposed to come on the pass rush from Sergio Kindle now may well not be there.

4. WNST.net’s Drew Forrester says Ed Reed spouted off about Baltimore media on Cleveland radio station

I’m finding it hard to find much of anything else to say about Ed Reed right now. He can be as mad as he wants to be at Mike Preston or anyone else in the Baltimore media; but everyone heard his comments-and no one forced a microphone in front of his face in any of his radio interviews; including the first one he did July 2 with us that started this ball rolling.

I’ll leave it alone for now.

The Ravens are off today as they hold an “administrative day” with veterans now in the house. They’ll put the pads on and his the field at McDaniel College for the first full team practice of camp tomorrow morning at 8:45. Luke Jones will keep you updated at the bottom of every hour with Drew Forrester, Thyrl Nelson and Nestor Aparicio.

5. The AP says Brad Mills shut down Orioles in 5-0 win for Blue Jays at Rogers Centre

Remember when Forrester bet me that the Birds would win AND cover 2.5?

I hope lunch is at PF Chang’s.

If I was surprised that a pitcher making his only start before being sent back down to the minors baffled the O’s, I’d tell you. The thing is…I’m not surprised by it at all.

How could I be?

The Orioles are the absolute worst team in baseball, and one of the worst teams in the history of baseball. How could I be surprised by any of this?!?!?

0-12 against Toronto this season. 31-70 for the season. I can’t make these type of numbers up.

6. The AP/WNST.net offer numerical evidence of loss

Jeremy Guthrie was actually pretty good last night. It probably won’t make you feel much better, but it happened. I’d like to think that it would improve his value at the Trade Deadline, but I saw what the Arizona Diamondbacks got for Dan Haren. Dan Haren is better than Jeremy Guthrie. The market just isn’t in the Orioles’ favor.

Despite Guthrie, you don’t want to look at the numbers-which include a combined 0-8 with 2 K’s and 5 LOB from Luke Scott and Adam Jones. Instead, look at Cameron Russell from Guyism. We’ll re-group after that…

cameronr

7. MLB.com’s James Hall says Juan Samuel will stick with Bergesen, rest of rotation this time through

Which means you’ll have to wait to see Zach Britton; not that you would have necessarily canceled your Saturday night plans to see him pitch anyway.

Clearly the Birds are hoping their roster decisions will be made for them with the trade deadline. Should they figure out a way to deal Guthrie (or Kevin Millwood), they could bring up Britton (or Chris Tillman) to replace them in the rotation. Should they deal Will Ohman or Mark Hendrickson, they could move Bergesen into the bullpen and move one of the others back into the rotation.

The problem with all of this is that I’m not even sure Andy MacPhail is going to be able to trade ANYONE. Guthrie is the best chip, but this is a year where the pitching market is top-heavy (Cliff Lee and Dan Haren already dealt, Roy Oswalt available); meaning the value for the secondary market is lessened. There have been years where Jeff Suppan and/or Sidney Ponson were the best pitchers available. If this was that type of the year, the market for Guthrie would be better.

The Birds will be lucky to get ANYTHING for Millwood; and the rest of their chips (Ty Wigginton, Miguel Tejada, Julio Lugo, Cesar Izturis, Ohman, Hendrickson) aren’t going to get them much more than a B-level prospect or player to be named at best.

The only real hope they have to get something is Luke Scott, who despite a tough night last night has been hot recently. The Orioles aren’t going to get a lot for him, but they might be able to get SOMETHING-which is more than they could get for much of anyone else.

8. The Sun’s Dean Jones Jr. says Josh Bell, Nolan Reimold homered in Norfolk Tides’ win on farm

Before we move on from the on-field Orioles, a couple of things.

-The O’s head to Kansas City to face the Royals tonight; with Brian Matusz going against Kyle Davies. First pitch from Kauffman Stadium is on MASN at 8:10pm. There’s no reason the Orioles couldn’t win this game…but I’ll pick KC. Sean O’Sullivan, Zack Greinke and the great Bruce Chen are scheduled to finish the weekend against Jake Arrieta, Bergesen and Millwood. With a mircale, they’ll split.

-Soren Petro from 810 WHB in Kansas City joined Drew this morning on “The Morning Reaction” to preview the Royals series. If you missed it, make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net to check it out. Other guests included:

  • Jerry Crasnick (ESPN.com)-who discussed the trade deadline, as well as surprising teams in baseball
  • Jason La Canfora (NFL Network)-who discussed Terrell Owens, the AFC North, Dez Bryant and more
  • John Perrotto (Baseball Prospectus)-who went around the world of baseball

It’s all up in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault as well.

9. Fanhouse’s Greg Couch says former O’s 1B Jim Gentile finally credited with winning 1961 RBI title

Which you would know if you heard my “Cheap Shots From The Bleachers” segment this morning on AM1570 WNST. It’s in the Audio Vault if you missed it.

Apparently Lee MacPhail had told Gentile that he would have gotten $5,000 more if he had won the RBI title-which Greg Couch thinks Andy MacPhail should offer to pay him as a kind gesture. I wouldn’t hold my breath.

As a kind gesture from myself to Jim Gentile, I will offer pictures of Daniela Freitas. (Thanks Busted Coverage/Totally Crap!)

freitas

10. UMTerps.com says WR/Specialist Torrey Smith, LB Alex Wujciak named All-ACC

Technically they have THREE all-conference selections, as Torrey Smith was named as both a receiver AND specialist. As I was reminded yesterday-Virginia Tech only had ONE all-conference selection (Ryan Williams), so take that Hokies!

The problem is that beyond these two, this Terrapins team has as many question marks as my Chapel Hill Elementary School 2nd grade English class. Of course, I rarely paid attention in my 2nd grade English class-as I spent more time paying attention to my “girlfriend” Michelle Hensley. Anyone know how she’s doing?

The joke I missed here was that Maryland only had two more wins than Chapel Hill last year. Damn! Sorry everyone…

11. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Maryland to play William & Mary (in football) again in 2012

I remind you that it’s “in football” because it isn’t surprising to see the Tribe come back to Byrd Stadium. Now if Gary Williams were to invite them back to Comcast Center after what happened last year, I’d be absolutely stunned. In fact, I’m a little surprised Gary doesn’t have a “no-fly” zone for W&M over College Park entirely.

Maryland regularly plays one FCS (former 1AA) per year; and they have Morgan State this year, Towson next year, and Rhode Island in 2013. This year’s other non-conference games are Navy, West Virginia and Eastern Michigan; next year’s are Notre Dame, West Virginia and (I believe) Temple.

12. Sports Network’s Craig Haley says Towson picked last in CAA

I stopped by CAA Media Day yesterday, and I have to admit that the oatmeal raisin cookies and potato chips at M&T Bank Stadium were DELICIOUS.

It’s hard to pick Rob Ambrose’s Tigers anything BUT last considering the year they’re coming off and the strength of the CAA; so I doubt they’re particularly disappointed.

As a consolation prize, I offer a photo of Katherine Jenkins. (Thanks Don Chavez!)

kjenkins

And finally, I leave you with this.

I know I already named a “Greatest Song of All Time This Week” this week (“Cornbread” by Dave Matthews Band), but I’m sure there’s been a week where I forgot to name one; so I’m naming another. Hey, it’s my blog. Enjoy “Shutterbug” by Big Boi from Outkast…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rWsvkW6rKkQ[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Wednesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Wednesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 28 July 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Wednesday!

It’s a Happy Wednesday for me because my roommate’s girlfriend (“The Luckiest Dang Roommate’s Girlfriend on the Face of the Planet”?) dropped off a gift at our apartment (“Summer Camp”) last night. Let’s just say it was thoughtful…

berger

And while I’m at it, my roommate and I are currently searching for a new home base-looking for a bit more space than our current 2 bedroom apartment. I asked this on Facebook yesterday, but I might as well ask again here. Does anyone rent townhouses in Baltimore County?

I’m looking for something with a little space and fairly priced. There’s only two of us, so I can’t pay $1600. I’ll take a nice place in a solid neighborhood, or I’ll take a dump with THIS in the basement…

microbrewery

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. WNST.net’s Luke Jones says Ravens DT Terrence Cody failed conditioning test, missed practice Tuesday

Argh.

Look, this ISN’T the earth-shattering news some folks in town wanted to think it was. Players fail the conditioning test in Westminster every year. Is it a BIT more concerning because the biggest issue Terrence Cody has faced in his life IS conditioning? Sure. But this isn’t a “stop the presses” type of issue.

My guess is that Terrence Cody will take the test again in the next day or two and will pass. After that, he’ll hit the practice field at McDaniel College after that.

My other guess? This won’t be the last time Terrence Cody’s conditioning is questioned while he’s in Charm City.

Just guesses.

(Edit from GMC: UPDATE-I was right. Cody passed his test and returned to the practice field Tuesday morning. Our long civic nightmare is over. And the news was first reported…by Fabian Washington on Twitter. Of course it was. They call Fabian “the most trusted name in news”, don’t they?)

2. The AP’s David Ginsburg says Cody, Ed Reed, Fabian Washington, Lardarius Webb amongst 10 Ravens on Training Camp PUP list

No one on this list is particularly surprising-I don’t think we knew much about Oniel Cousins’ throat surgery; and I’m not really sure what’s going on with Prince Miller or Rodelin Anthony (and both are likely longshots to make the roster anyway).

And as our own Luke Jones wrote later last night, it is IMPORTANT to remember that this ISN’T the “miss 6 weeks of the season” PUP list-just the active list to start Camp. As these guys are ready-they’ll practice.

(Edit from GMC: UPDATE-Prince Miller returned to practice today as well. Thank God!)

I’m just grateful the team didn’t end up putting Asimina Koutsounouri on PUP. That would have been devastating (Thanks Don Chavez/Totally Crap!)…

Asimina

3. WNST.net’s Drew Forrester says Steve Bisciotti should be considering contract extension for John Harbaugh

And I’ll go ahead on the other side and say…and the end of the season.

There’s no question that the organization CANNOT allow Coach Harbs to go into next season with it being the final year of his contract (see: Trembley, Dave). That being said, there’s no reason to necessarily do this right now, as the focus should be on the team and trying to reach the Super Bowl.

Of course, the opposing argument would be “but then what do you do if everything goes wrong this season and the team somehow ends up 5-11? You either reward him for a bad season or you allow him to enter the final year of his contract.”

That would be the issue, yes. Let’s worry about that when it happens.

4. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Mike Duffy says Cam Cameron thinks Troy Smith-John Beck decision will be ‘pretty obvious’

Before we move on from the Ravens, a couple of things…

-Two more practices for the Ravens today, with this afternoon’s session scheduled for 3:30pm. After the morning session; John Harbaugh, Terrence Cody and Ed Dickson are scheduled to meet with the media. Sergio Kindle was originally scheduled as well-but it’s safe to say that won’t happen. Luke Jones is on the scene, he’ll be checking in with reports throughout the day with Thyrl Nelson and Nestor Aparicio on AM1570 WNST.

-Brian Baldinger (NFL Network) said Haloti Ngata was the 5th best player in the entire NFL. Sorta makes me look silly for saying he’s the #3 guy on the Ravens’ roster… (Joe Flacco, Michael Oher).

5. The AP says Jose Bautista homered twice as Blue Jays crushed Orioles in Toronto

Thank God Jose Bautista only plays the Birds 18 times a year, or the Hall of Fame folks would already be working on his plaque in Cooperstown.

I will be forced to admit that I turned the game off after Bautista’s 1st inning homer. Why the Orioles let Kevin Millwood even pitch in the first inning is beyond me. It just isn’t going to go well.

Remember when we thought Kevin Millwood was going to have trade value? I still think he does, I just think they need to lower their expectations for what they can get for him. In fact, their best bets may be Isuro Tanaka and/or Rube Baker from the Cleveland Indians.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DXjmoEhO0VI[/youtube]

6. The AP/WNST.net offer numerical evidence of loss

Nick Markakis went 2-4 with a double and RBI…BUT…Felix Pie, Jake Fox and Cesar Izturis combined for an 0-fer with 2K’s each.

You know you don’t want to look at this.

My recommendation would be to look at Nikoletta Ralli instead. (Thanks Busted Coverage/Brosome!)

ralli

7. MLB.com’s James Hall says Zach Britton rumored for Saturday start vs. Royals, Juan Samuel doesn’t want to send Bergesen back to Norfolk

I’m going to try my hardest to say something here besides “I don’t really care”, but it’s hard for me to think of much of anything else.

If Bergesen stays in the rotation, he’ll probably get hit around. Kansas City stinks, but they can still hit. There’s nothing about his performance recently that suggests he’ll suddenly come alive. I don’t know that he REALLY gains anything from going back to Norfolk, but maybe he does.

Zach Britton probably ISN’T ready to reach the big league level yet-but it would be a pressure-less situation on the road against a terrible KC team at a time when no one in either town is particularly concerned about what’s going on baseball-wise.

My gut says Bergesen makes the start-and my gut says that’s probably for the best right now.

My gut ALSO says that the 3rd Berger Cookie was a bad choice last night. I rarely listen to my gut.

8. The Sun’s Dean Jones Jr. says Britton solid in Tides’ loss, Billy Rowell solid in Frederick Keys’ loss on farm

Before we move on from the on-field O’s, a couple of things…

-The Orioles are back in action tonight, wrapping up their 3 game set in Canada. Jeremy Guthrie (who MIGHT have some trade value) goes against the Jays’ Brad Mills (who will be making his first start). First pitch at Rogers Centre is at 7:07pm, and the game can be seen on MASN2.

-If you missed Bowie Baysox 1B Joe Mahoney today on “The Morning Reaction” with Drew Forrester on AM1570 WNST; make sure you check out the chat with the Eastern League Player of the Week in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net. Other guests this morning were:

  • Clark Judge (CBSSports.com), who went around the NFL with Drew-discussing Terrell Owens, the Ravens and who he liked in the AFC.
  • Ovie Mughelli (Atlanta Falcons FB, former Raven), who discussed his recent trip to the Gulf Coast and football in general with Drew.
  • Luke Jones, who checked in live from the practice field at McDaniel College with news about Terrence Cody, Matt Birk, etc.

They’re all in the Audio Vault as well if you want to check them out!

9. ESPN.com’s Matt Lindner says Birds should consider racing Muppets at Oriole Park at Camden Yards

Why did I include this in Crabs and Beer? Honestly, I have no idea. Probably because it’s a funny read (and we can use something like that when we talk about the Orioles); and it gives me an excuse to include this classic version of “Bohemian Rhapsody”…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JruqUIjl5Sw[/youtube]

10. FoxSports.com’s Jeff Goodman says Gary Williams got ‘new lease on life’ when Debbie Yow left for NC State

Which would surprise…like…no one.

Jeff will be on with Thyrl at 10:40am today to talk about this story and other college basketball-related items. Check it out live or later today in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault.

Also make sure you check out this week’s edition of the “D1scast”, as myself and Patrick Stevens (D1scourse) discuss everything going on in the world of college sports-including a wrap of this weekend’s ACC Kickoff event in Greensboro. You can listen to the D1scast in the Audio Vault as well.

I got a new “lease on life” myself when I saw pictures of Carolina Baldini over at Guyism this morning…

baldini

And finally, I leave you with this.

It’s a Happy Wednesday for me because I was reminded that the Harford County Farm Fair gets underway tomorrow. Which reminds me-I need to run out and pick up some chewing tobacco today. Not for me to actually use, just to help me feel more comfortable.

Much like the Maryland State Fair in Timonium, there’s one simple thing that I enjoy most about the Hazzard County Fair. Plain and simple…PIG RACES…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nQaxImm9zoY[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Taking a Look at O’s in MLB Mock Draft

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Taking a Look at O’s in MLB Mock Draft

Posted on 04 June 2010 by Ryan Chell

The Major League Baseball Draft begins on Monday and fifty rounds and two days later, the Orioles will hopefully continue to build up the farm system in an effort to end the team’s 13 year losing streak, and if manager Dave Trembley is given his walking papers this morning, give the next manager( or  a few managers from now) solid major league talent to get this team back on the map.

The Orioles have the #3 overall pick in the draft, marking the fourth straight year that the Orioles are drafting in the Top 5( Billy Rowell, Matt Wieters, Brian Matusz, and Matt Hobgood). A lot of the experts expect Andy MacPhail and scouting directors Joe Jordan and Dave Stockstill to continue buying into MacPhail’s philosophy of “growing the arms, and buy the bats”.

The projection from a lot of the experts out there is that the selection will be high school pitcher Jameson Taillon out of The Woodlands High(Texas). It would be the third straight year the Orioles took a pitcher with their first pick and the second straight year they took a high school pitcher with that first pick (Hobgood).

Taillon, 18, has tremendous size (6’7 230 lb) and he has a great prescense on the mound. He has four pitches in his arsenal, including a fastball, curve, slider, and changeup.

If the Orioles go that route, Baltimore could have a stacked rotation in a few years( Matusz, Tillman, Arrieta, Hobgood, Taillon). We’ll just have to wait a little bit more( I know its hard O’s fans).

There isn’t as much coverage out there for a 50-round MLB Draft as there is for a NFL Draft, but here is a top ten mock draft according to Sports Illustrated’s Tom Verducci:

1. Nationals: Bryce Harper, C, College of Southern Nevada: Combining this guy with Stephen Strasburg is going to give the Nationals one of the best battery combinations in the league when this guy comes up. He hit 28 HRs in a JUCO wood-bat league and is the consensus #1 pick.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=liS3kGvQ9Bk[/youtube]

2. Pirates: Manny Machado, SS, Brito High(Miami): Some say this guy could be the next A-Rod. This guy has true power, the scouts say.

Manny Machado

3. Orioles: Jameson Taillon, RHP, The Woodlands High(Texas): A tall, overpowering right hander who will join Matt Hobgood as two young starter prospects for the rebuilding O’s. Scouts say that he actually has a great changeup, but he doesn’t use it enough.

Jameson Taillon

4. Royals: Drew Pomeranz, LHP, Mississippi: While his strikeout numbers are impressive this year(134 K’s in 94 innings), he has had some up-and-down performances stopped him from going in the top 3.

Drew Pomeranz

5. Indians: Chris Sale, LHP, Florida Gulf Coast: The NCAA’s strikeout leader is moving up the board quickly, accoring to Verducci.

Chris Sale

6. Arizona: Deck McGuire, RHP, Georgia Tech: With Brandon Webb’s injuries mounting over the last two years, the Diamondbacks need to grab a pitcher here( and there’s plenty) because their farm system is thin.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cokMuXGBBg[/youtube]

7. Mets: Matt Harvey, RHP, North Carolina: A smart pick for the Mets considering how much their rotation has struggled this year behind Johan Santana. Verducci also says the Mets could go with high school slugger Josh Sale or Middle Tennessee State Bryce Bentz.

Matt harvey

8. Astros: Karsten Whitson, RHP, Chipley High(Florida): He has a mid 90′s fastball and he’s only in high school.

Karsten Whitson

9. Padres, Alex Cox, 3B, Arkansas: He could go higher because he is probably the best college hitter in the draft other than maybe Harper, who is the total package. Cox’s versatility can also help; he can play both second and third.

Zack Cox

10. Athletics: Stetson Allie, RHP, St. Edward High(Ohio): This guy is a flamethrower; he can throw 98 MPH on the gun. Future closer in the making? He is also a pretty good hitter as well.

Stetson Allie

Here are some other mock drafts out there:

1. AOL Fanhouse

2. ESPN’s Keith Law( Insider subscription needed)

3. Baseball America’s Jim Callis

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Angelos: “I’m Hoping the Orioles Will Get Their Act Together”

Posted on 21 May 2010 by Glenn Clark

With the Baltimore Orioles and Washington Nationals set to open a 3 game series tonight at Nationals Park, it made sense that the Baltimore Sun (an official media partner of the Baltimore Orioles) would dedicate a large chunk of today’s sports coverage to the relationship between the O’s, Nats and MASN; and how this series impacts all of the parties involved.

In a story written by Jeff Barker today, Orioles owner Peter Angelos stated that the early season excitement surrounding the Washington Nationals is “a very good thing” for the Orioles, due to their relationship via MASN. But then he went on to say something that was particularly strange…

“I’m sure the Washington team will continue to improve, and I made the side comment that I’m hoping the Orioles will get their act together”

Let me set some background here before I fully address Angelos’ comment.

I have stated that I intend to make it down to DC this weekend to see the “Battle of the Beltways” series at some point, as I enjoy the high school football-esque nature of the rivalry. I attended the Sunday game at Nats Park a season ago, and really enjoyed sitting in a stadium with 20,000 fans of one team and 20,000 fans of another team.

With the Nationals improving and the Orioles struggling, some Birds fans in the District of Columbia and Maryland suburbs have appeared at least willing to give the Nationals a try. The excitement surrounding the Nationals is hard to ignore. Despite their recent slide that has left them at .500 entering the weekend series, they have arguably exceeded expectations early on with a balanced lineup and fairly solid pitching; and have sparked their fanbase with the call-up of Drew Storen and impending debut of phenom Stephen Strasburg.

It’s quite possibly more uncomfortable for me to admit than it is for any other Orioles fan in the world due to my well-known dislike for all things Washington-related (thank God the Redskins are still an embarrassment), but the Nationals are quickly becoming exactly what we had hoped the Orioles would.

Yet still, Stan Kasten told Drew Forrester today on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST that building interest “still comes down to us getting our job done.” This is the same Stan Kasten who during an appearance on 106.7 WJFK in Virginia just weeks ago addressed the lack of attendance early on this season by saying “when we do our job, they’ll (the fans) come out.”

Orioles President of Baseball Operations Andy MacPhail made some comments recently himself. Not in a radio appearance or in a forum where he could directly answer questions regarding the incredible struggles of his ballclub, but instead in a strange video posted by MLB.com that ended with a cryptic “keep the faith” message.

Of course, the video WAS posted before roughly 2,000 fans attended back to back games at Camden Yards this week against the Kansas City Royals, so maybe MacPhail really DIDN’T know that the “faith” was non-existent here in Charm City.

This is where we get back to Angelos. With the Orioles sitting at 13-29 and once again mired in a funk that has seen them drop 5 of their last 6 games, frustration is mounting in Baltimore. Even some who have sworn by Andy MacPhail’s “plan” have begun to admit that things aren’t going the way they should be. Instead of looking like a team that can compete in 2011, the Orioles again appear to be a team that has significantly more questions than answers.

With a long season still ahead of us and a crucial offseason looming, it would be nice to hear something reassuring from the organization. It would be nice to hear something along the lines of “we know this has failed, but we are determined to make the Orioles a winner. We are determined to make this organization one that the city can once more be proud of.”

It would be nice to NOT hear something along the lines of “I’m hoping the Orioles will get their act together.”

Peter Angelos is personally RESPONSIBLE for the Orioles “getting their act together.”

Andy MacPhail is as well, Dave Trembley is as well, Brian Matusz is as well, Adam Jones is as well, but Peter Angelos is the highest authority in the organization that needs to “get their act together.” Whether or not he’s at OPACY on a daily basis, he’s NOT an outsider. He can’t sit back and blame others.

He HAS to be accountable for the fact that the organization DOES desperately need to “get their act together.” He has to answer the tough questions, and he has to have those around him answer those similarly tough questions.

Stan Kasten’s team enters the weekend with a level of excitement and an even greater level of anticipation amongst a fanbase that appears to be slowly growing both inside the District and in the battleground areas in the state where the two franchises fight for support. Yet Stan Kasten has taken accountability for the organization’s struggles and hopes to continue to fix problems and win over fans.

I’m reminded of my time at 1060 KDUS in Phoenix, and my relationship with Arizona Diamondbacks President Derrick Hall. When the organization made a decision, Derrick Hall made himself available to us at all times, as he did with the D-Backs’ flagship station (620 KTAR) and the other sports station in town (910 KGME). When I killed the team for giving Eric Byrnes a 3 year, $30 million deal; Hall had no problem coming on our show and discussing the topic.

When the decision ultimately failed and Byrnes was designated for assignment earlier this year, Hall again made himself available to those who questioned the move, and was accountable for the failed decision. Heck, he even made himself available to me via Facebook when I wanted to remind him that I thought it was a mistake from Day 1.

Sometimes organizations make mistakes. The Orioles have made 13 years worth of mistakes. Organizations who hold themselves accountable for their mistakes tend to be able to make better decisions in the future.

Andy MacPhail wants the hundreds of us that still care to “keep the faith” and Peter Angelos hopes the team he owns will “get their act together.”

I just want them to tell me they’re going to fix it, and then do it. In the meantime, it would be nice for them to be understanding of why we DON’T have faith as a fanbase, and to work with us to bridge the gap.

A simple “it’s our fault and it’s unacceptable” would be really nice. Any form of accountability would do, frankly. Saying there’s no “suicide pact” with struggling hitters is nice, but accepting responsibility for the struggling hitters would be much more responsible.

I’ll say it again. It sucks to be an Orioles fan right now.

-G

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