Monday, October 1, 2007

Orioles Lose to the Yankees 10-4: Winds of Change...

Well, the 162nd game of the season was played in Baltimore yesterday afternoon, and much like a broken record, the Orioles lost to the New York Yankees, 10-4.

The script yesterday ran much like a multitude of other games – the Orioles stay competitive for a few innings, and then have a bad inning, the bullpen comes in; thereafter opens up the floodgates.

I don’t want to so much talk about the game; however, what’s on everyone’s minds – the future of the team.

If you were at the game, the problem was right there in front of your eyes. In addition, to the throngs of Yankee fans in town and at the ballpark in comparison to the Oriole fans, this franchise is in trouble and has a lot of work to do.

First off, the news came out that Sam Treblehorn will not be back with the team. It was sad to hear the news, considering he’s been with the team for so long.

It looks no definitive reason was given, but it may signal changes to come and since Treblehorn has been here throughout the losing, he had to go. I really like the guy, and he was nothing but great towards the fans, as well he’s got a great reputation as a teacher.

This much was said by Trembley and the answer is within the semantics:

"We're going to do what we feel we have to do in order to change the face and identity of this team, [so] we're going in another direction," Trembley said. "I can't say that Treb is not coming back because he didn't work hard or he doesn't have knowledge. That's not the case. I'm going to bring in somebody else."

From Treblehorn:

"They're going to make changes and changes are part of this business. Do I agree with the change? No," he said.

When prolonged losing occurs, you cannot always fire the players – you fire the staff.

What happens to Mazzone, who knows? I really like him and he’s been a boon to Bedard, Loewen and Guthrie; however, the bullpen has not been good at all, and the enigma known as Daniel Cabrera has not improved at all.

It’s very sad in Baltimore – winds of change are coming and there are going to be a lot of bitter feelings.


Second, Sam Mejias is also leaving the team. From what he said in the player’s lot on Sunday, he’s going to retire after 37 years or so in the game.

In addition, I think Trembley wants his own guys and for he put his own imprint on the team.


Third, the big talk of the offseason for the Orioles will be about Miguel Tejada.

Simply, the big question is what happened with the slugger in the field. The bat is fine; however, he’s no doubt a liability in the field at times and thus it has cost the Orioles games.

The Baltimore Sun looks at the issue in today’s paper, and right now I say its 70-30 that in favor that he leaves.

He and O’s Chief Operating Officer, Andy McPhail met this weekend to talk about the future, and long story short – he still considers himself a shortstop, is frustrated by the losing, and does not like the idea of changing positions.

Read a few choice quotes from Tejada/McPhail and judge for yourself:

On the eve of what could be his last game in an Orioles uniform, Tejada said he didn't ask MacPhail for a trade, but he made it clear he's not interested in being with a team that's rebuilding.

"I want to win," Tejada said. "It's not about changing positions. My point isn't about changing positions. My point is winning. I don't want to play every day just for money. I'm not that kind of person. I play for pride. I don't care about changing positions if we're going to be a winner, and I want to be on a team that is going to compete to win."


"I'm not particularly troubled with somebody that wants to play, wants to win games and believes in their abilities," MacPhail said. "He believes in his abilities at shortstop. That's OK. I have to do what is the best interest in the franchise. I think you make better decisions if you have opportunity to talk to people and get it firsthand. He clearly would prefer to stay at short, but he wants to win."

In an interview with Mid-Atlantic Sports Network before Friday's game, Tejada said he would rather be traded than moved to another position with the Orioles. He backed off that statement slightly yesterday, maintaining that his position was secondary to being on a winning team.


"I'm angry because this is not the time for this," said Tejada, who has 15 errors this season. "Why don't they talk about changing [New York Yankees shortstop] Derek Jeter's position? Jeter has, like, 20 errors. We're not winning. We're not a winning team. Why do they keep talking about me, me, me? That's what I said, I'd prefer to go somewhere else and show the world how good of a shortstop I am when I'm playing on a good team.

When it come down to things, in the end, I am almost sure that Miguel may be sent on his way – that is on the way out.

It looks like the Orioles are going to rebuild and this time, it may be a slow process from the bottom up, rather than adding pieces here or there. Honestly, if we are going to pay a guy $12-13 million dollars, we need to be contending and the pieces need to be around that player. There’s no point paying him all that money if we are going to suck.

Sadly, I don’t see him staying, and if he does, it’s only because he could not be moved or the Orioles did not try hard enough. He needs to go for the good of the team, and we could possibly get some prospects in return.

The Orioles made a fatal mistake not trading him to the Angels last year.

Miguel wants to “win”, but it may be somewhere else…


Fourth, what happens to the front office? Does the two headed monster of Mike Flanagan and Jim Duquette stay? I’ll try to keep my comments brief; however, the two men have made a lot more bad decisions than good. Personally, I think that based on the track record of Flanagan, he needs to go.

Honestly, if he were a CEO of any publicly traded company in America and Orioles fans were the stockholders, he’d voted out long ago. His record would not be tolerated.

The numbers don’t lie – it’s not been good.

The Baltimore Sun takes a look at the moves the pair made, and um, the record speaks for itself. Some moves they lucked out on; however, the bad far outweighs the good.


Fifth, what to do about Erik Bedard? He needs to be offered a contract and an equitable one. If he does not take it, he should be shopped around and sold high. He’s no doubt talented, but he comes off as a guy who plays baseball not because he loves the game; sadly, because he can make a lot of money off it.

From the Sun: “There is speculation the mercurial Bedard wouldn't sign with the Orioles long-term anyway -- Bedard disputes that, saying he'd at least consider it -- though the club probably won't know for sure until it starts negotiating.”

Well, the organization has to try their hardest because left-handed hurlers are hard to find and someone like Bedard only comes once every few years. At this point, gauge and see what could be gotten. If he does not want to stay – trade him and do so for a lot of prospects and major ready players.

Sixth, who stays and who goes? I’ll do that in an upcoming post along with more thoughts from the long season.

I’m thankful it’s over.


With the season finally over, Orioles beat writer for the Sun, Jeff Zrebiec had an article on the potential, if not assumed changes that the team will make in the winter. The coaches, manager and brass will be in Florida in the next week or so charting a course for Baltimore in 2008 and beyond. As well, grades were issued for the team – um, let’s just say that most members of the team got grades that were mediocre.

Roch Kubatko laments fondly and sadly the season that was for the 2007 Orioles.

It’s been a long season, and Peter Schmuck lets us know the future will be rocky, as well columnist David Steele says the Orioles have fooled us over and over…

Just to add more pain to the Orioles, John Maine threw a one-hitter in New York over the weekend; alas, it only put off the inevitable – the Mets were eliminated.

Orioles Hangout, the Washington Post, the Orioles MLB site, & the Baltimore Examiner have a recap of the game yesterday.

Jamie Walker has been a godsend for a bullpen, working in more than 80 games; however, he’s been way overexposed (the same with Chad Bradford).

Nick Markakis was voted team MVP on Sunday, and he’s put together quietly a brilliant career in a short time. Granted, he may or may not have the lofty numbers of A-Rod; however, if he were playing in Boston, Chicago or New York, he’d be a God.


rbt_25_10 said...

He’s no doubt talented, but he comes off as a guy who plays baseball not because he loves the game; sadly, because he can make a lot of money off it.

would you care to share your reasons for thinking that bedard is in it only for the money? i don't see it. just because he's cool on the mound and doesn't like talking about what he does on the field doesn't mean that he's uninterested.

if it is a matter of asking for what he considers is his due, there's nothing wrong with that either. he doesn't owe the team any more loyalty than the club owes him. it is a business. the team has the right to make decisions that work to their benefit, and so does bedard have the right to do what he thinks is right for him. if that means going to a team that is willing to pay him his true worth, so be it. he's worked hard for it. he's earned it. he deserves it.

Maryland Orioles' Fan said...

Well, I don't know for sure obviously, but his actions over time have shown me that he while he may have passion for the game; however, he realizes he's good and wants to cash in and he more or less doesn't care if he stays in Baltimore or not.

Sports is a business - a huge one, and we know that.

I think we agree on almost all counts, but it was just my honest observation.

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