Kudos to WNST for beating everyone to the punch on the J.O. story yesterday.
I believed the response to Jonathan Ogden’s retirement would have been more encompassing in Baltimore. I thought the story would reach Favre-like levels in town. I know the story has continued to lead everywhere in town; but the lack of comments I’ve seen on this and other pages has surprised me; as has the number of “it was time for him to make a decision” responses and comments.
Jonathan Ogden’s decision to retire should be the type of decision that causes fans in this city to step back and reflect. Jonathan Ogden was one of the biggest reasons why we fell in love with this team over the last 12 years. In fact, if Jonathan Ogden hadn’t panned out; it is entirely possible that the organization we know now would not have accomplished half of what they have been able to.
The bottom line with Ogden was that he was an anchor; a rock. Ogden was the type of player that didn’t need to prove how valuable he was; everyone who watched could just see it. We got so used to what Jonathan Ogden would do that when he was less than perfect (think Dwight Freeney); it was so odd that we actually remembered it more than we remember any of his greatest moments. We remember because it was something we had never seen before.
The city should practically stop to honor this man today.
I know the reasons why Jonathan Ogden’s retirement isn’t being viewed the way other athletes’ retirements in this city have been.
-He only played 12 years.
-He didn’t play a position where we could measure his performance with statistics.
-His final seasons were remembered as much for injuries as on-field performance.
-We didn’t know him.
In the past, when athletes have retired in this city that we grew to love during their playing days; we felt as though we knew them on a personal level (and many times we did!). Jon Ogden wasn’t that guy…….he wasn’t a local guy. He wasn’t overly active in the community. He didn’t go to Lions Club meetings. He didn’t do card signings at White Marsh Mall (although there were times you could get one for $40 or so probably). He did radio appearances, but didn’t go out of his way to get to know anyone.
I could write about how genuinely nice of a human being Jonathan Ogden is; but many people in this town never got to see that; so it wouldn’t matter.
I think it is perfect that J.O. is retiring now, during the King of Baltimore Sports; because I think he represents what K.O.B.S. is all about.
This contest isn’t about who took the most pictures at Bel-Loc Diner. This contest isn’t about who gave the best talk to us during our middle school assemblies. This contest isn’t about whose family we had the most fun with on league nights at Bel Air Bowl (Elly Ripken could flat out BOWL). This contest is about who was the BEST athlete to play for a team whose name was “Baltimore __________.” And if there is one word to describe Jon Og, BEST is most definitely an accurate description.
I hope everyone can take some time today to reflect on how fortunate we were as fans to have someone like Jonathan Ogden play for our team. And I hope that just because he didn’t spend 300 days a year in Charm City; we will still consider him in the same vein as Lenny Moore, Jim Palmer, and the rest of the men we consider “Kings.”
He was just that great.
Let’s see what everyone else has to say…..
Best of Wednesday’s WNST Blogs:
Nestor Aparicio offers photo history of Ogden memories
Nestor Aparicio remembers J.O. through book excerpt (read it!)
Casey Willett says signs pointed to Ogden’s retirement
Ed Frankovic expects Ovechkin to win MVP
The Official Site’s Mark Remme says Olson touched up early; Birds can’t rally late in loss
The Official Site provides numerical evidence of loss
The Official Site’s Mark Remme says Trembley pleased with Loewen’s progress
The Official Site’s Mark Remme says Bradford notches milestone 500th appearance in loss
MLB.com’s Steve Conley says Erbe throws no-hit ball for 7 on farm
Red Sox Official Site’s Ian Browne says Colon proves value with career win 150
ESPN The Magazine’s Buster Olney says Gibbons sends letter in desperation to play
The Sun’s Jeff Zrebiec says Papelbon forced to enter in 9th to squash Birds’ rally attempt
The Sun’s Jeff Zrebiec says Cabrera to work on delivery
The Sun’s Dan Connolly says Gibbons expects to find work with team in NJ or NY
The Sun’s Roch Kubatko excited to welcome back C. Gomez this weekend
The Sun cleans up after me
The Examiner’s Pete Sabatini says Birds back at .500, tied for last after loss
Washington Post’s Marc Carig says Scott homers in loss for Birds
Washington Post’s Marc Carig says Sarfate waiting on word for birth of child
Boston Globe’s Gordon Edes says Varitek homered despite illness
Boston Herald’s Jeff Horrigan says getting to 150 seemed like long shot for Colon
Oriole Central’s “Ben” doesn’t feel bad for Gibbons
Dempsey’s Army’s “Heath” thinks Albers should replace Burres in rotation
Earl Weaver Rules’ Jay Flannelly says Kakes now has hits in 12 of last 13
Oriole Post’s Anthony Amobi says Gibbons deserves another shot
Orioles Hangout’s Paul Folkemer says Birds suffer ‘letdown’ vs. Sox
Orioles Hangout’s Adam Vencill says Keys lifted by Erbe’s pitching, Wieters’ bunt in win on farm
Orioles Insider’s Michael Ward says Brewers deny Weeks-Roberts talks
The Official Site’s Mike Duffy says Ogden to finish legendary career by announcing retirement today
The Sun’s David Steele says Ogden has rare chance to retire on own terms
The Sun’s Jamison Hensley and Mike Preston say team’s first draft pick could be first to Canton as well
The Sun’s Mike Preston considers Ogden ‘incomparable’
The Sun’s Jamison Hensley says ‘commitment’ could be issue for Gaither in replacing Ogden
The Sun offers timeline of Ogden history
The Sun’s Ken Murray says Harbaugh pleased with J. Johnson
The Sun’s Ken Murray says Ravens practice gadget plays
The Sun’s Ken Murray says Cousins has fighting history
The Sun’s Jamison Hensley says Ravens, Brown not close to extension
The Sun’s Dan Connolly wonders if Ogden amongst four greatest in Baltimore football history
Aaron Wilson says J.O. ‘good with’ retirement decision
Aaron Wilson says Cody, Cousins come to blows at practice
The Examiner’s Dave Carey says injury history provoked Cody to fight
The Examiner’s Ron Snyder says Harbaugh thinks Gaither has some of J.O.’s qualities
ESPN’s John Clayton says Ogden’s retirement signifies end of era for great OT’s
Washington Post’s Camille Powell says Boller considers playing with Ogden ‘blessing’
WhatIfSports.com’s Paul Bessire predicts Ravens go 3-13
Ravens Gab’s Matt Loede says Ogden’s retirement gives opportunity to Gaither
Baltimore Beatdown’s “Rexx” says 4th Rounder M. Smith hopes to find role on offense
Ravens Locker says Gaither step down from Ogden
The Ebony Bird’s Jarrett Carter says Rice making ridiculous claims regarding 52 on Sirius
The Ebony Bird’s Jarrett Carter says Zeus Brown bringing Fatburger to Maryland
Fanhouse’s Josh Alper says Ogden, Favre, Strahan could make outstanding 2013 Hall class
Fanhouse’s Ryan Wilson says tough rookies will likely play Special Teams
B-More Bird’s Nest’s “Nestminder” says Ogden DEFINITELY headed to Hall in ‘13
The Sun’s Don Markus says if he qualifies, Darden likely to commit to Terps
The Sun’s Matt Bracken says 40 helps get Stinebaugh to Maryland
Sporting News’ Matt Hayes says Maryland-Cal amongst ACC’s best non-conference games
Terrapin Times’ Mark Clem says Stinebaugh ‘relieved’ to commit to Terps (must subscribe)
Terrapin Times’ Mark Clem says Terps could be close to nailing down DE recruit (must subscribe)
Terrapin Times’ Mark Clem previews O-Line (must subscribe)
Turtle Sports Report’s Jeff Ermann says Terps in good with NJ recruit Holmes (must subscribe)
The Official Site says Zimmerman signs 6 year extension
The Sun’s Edward Lee says players really wanted Zimmerman back
Inside Lacrosse’s Jon Brand says Big East Lacrosse fallout could create Loyola-Ohio St. rivalry
The Official Site says Mids to sign autographs Saturday at OPACY
The Sun’s Jeff Barker says Congress to talk Horse Racing next week
CBS Sports’ Gregg Doyel says Dutrow ‘horse’s ass’
Thoroughbred Times’ Jeff Lowe says stewards satisfied with Desormeaux’s race explanation
Thoroughbred Times’ Tom Musgrave says Congress to look health, welfare of thoroughbreds
USA Today’s Christine Brennan says Olympics not same without McKay
USA Today’s A.J. Foyt says McKay never asked ‘stupid questions’
SOME QUICK THOUGHTS:
-Here’s a brain-buster for you. Which has been the more valuable Outfielder/Reliever duo the Orioles acquired in a trade this past offseason: Adam Jones and George Sherrill (from the M’s in the Bedard deal) or Luke Scott and Dennis Sarfate (from the ‘Stros in the Tejada deal)? I think the answer is Scott and Sarfate.
-Jay Gibbons DOES deserve another chance to prove himself somewhere. He certainly had talent before he discovered PED’s, and that talent could have potentially manifested even if he had never injected one needle in his body. If he can trust those god-given abilities again; it is not impossible that he could become a valuable part of a major league team. He has a lot to prove during his time in the Atlantic League.
-I am not considered about Oniel Cousins’ propensity for finding himself in skirmishes……yet. Dan Cody is obviously going to be a bit more feisty given how desperate he is to get on the field; and Cousins might prove himself to be nothing more than a punk kid when it’s all said and done; but if John Harbaugh is laughing, I won’t be too concerned.
-As far as Jared Gaither replacing J.O. goes; I can confirm that size is the one attribute that can’t be coached. He may never be an All-Pro; but I’d rather take my chances with someone his size than most others who could find themselves in the position.
-I knew the Ravens wouldn’t be picked to win the AFC North; but are we going to spend an entire Summer with prognosticators saying things like “this will be a long season” and “the Ravens will be lucky to go 4-12”? I prefer things like “this team is headed in the right direction” and “if things fall in place; they could make a late run at .500”.
-Since Congress has been busy worrying about everything else but gas prices; they might as well talk ponies. But the responsibility to make changes absolutely falls on the industry itself. Hopefully there are many in the industry who are serious about proposing change. Congress can do no more than offer finger wagging and soft verbal blows.
Talk to you tomorrow.