Well, the Orioles have replaced their pitching coach relatively quickly, as Leo Mazzone was fired.
From the Orioles.com: The Orioles today announced the hiring of Rick Kranitz as pitching coach for the 2008 season.
Kranitz spent the past two seasons as pitching coach for the Florida Marlins after 22 years as a coach and instructor in the Chicago Cubs organization. He declined an offer to remain as Marlins' pitching coach for 2008 in order to pursue other opportunities.
Orioles Manager Dave Trembley managed in the Cubs farm system from 1994-2002 while Kranitz was a coach and instructor for the Cubs.
More or less, Trembley wanted someone who was comfortable in his system, and who he worked with. I am going to assume that he wanted Kranitz all along and Leo was going to be given his walking papers anyway.
I think the Orioles wanted someone who could work well with the young pitching and perhaps make a tangible contribution to the team. At this point, if there's someone who can come in and make things better, we, as fans would be grateful.
Good luck, Mr. Kranitz.
The Baltimore Sun has more on the Kranitz hire, and Peter Schmuck thinks he's a good fit for the Orioles. I have no idea what he's done in the past, aside from looking at Florida's success, but it looks like he's got great rapport with Trembley and has had success with working with young pitching.
There's more on the development from the Baltimore Examiner, Washington Post & the Orioles.com.
As well, beat writer Spencer Fordin has a new mailbag on the Orioles.com...
Childs Walker of the Sun reports that the Maryland Board of Public Works approved yesterday a settlement between the Orioles and the Maryland Stadium Authority that will allow the replacement of the board to commence; however, in the piece it notes that it will be hard to do considering the amount of time for the work to be done before the start of the next season.
The Baltimore Examiner has more on the story.
Meanwhile, Cal Ripken Jr., who was named two months ago a special envoy for the State Department, will go to China at the end of this month to talk baseball with coaches from Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou.