Monday, March 31, 2008

Ironclad Signature Showcase & Real Baseball Display; March, 8th, 2008 at BWI...

Signature Showcase; March 8th - BWI

The rainy Saturday morning, when many prefer to stay in their pajamas, brought baseball fans of all ages and loyalties together at the BWI Hilton Hotel.

The Signature Showcase, presented by MAB Celebrity Services and Ironclad Authentics, was an event including autographs from a number of former pro athletes and a variety of vendors promoting teams, new products, or selling items. Attending players included Bill and Cal Ripken, Reggie Jackson and many more. A full list, in order of appearance, is included below.

The Orioles, Redskins, Reds, and Yankees are some of the teams that were represented. However, the star of the day was Cal Ripken Jr. He signed autographs for hundreds of people for two hours, stopping occasionally to pose of pictures and shake hands. Ripken made it a point to take time with each seeking person. He was polite, kind, gracious for each item (including an old chair from Memorial Stadium) he autographed, and was enjoying the time to catch up with a few old friends.

The other highlighted player was Reggie Jackson, a former Yankee. In the past, Jackson had portrayed a dislike for the city of Baltimore. On Saturday he was nothing but smiles as he signed balls, pictures, bats, and other memorabilia and chatted casually with other players and the personnel.

The inviting firm, Maroon PR, led by Bonnie Shenahan, was promoting Cal Ripken’s Real Baseball. Real Baseball is an online video game which has been compared to fantasy ball. This free program allows a person to pick players for a team and then use the ‘characters’ to compete against friends or other teams. For more information or getting started yourself check out

The event was well planned and a great place for a fan to meet his/her favorite player, make memories, and collect memorabilia. Pictures of the event will be incoming shortly.

Attending Players:
Billy Ripken
Benny Ayala
Jim Palmer
Dick Hall
Curt Mutton
Cal Ripken Jr.
Tony Perez
Brooks Robinson
Johnny Bench
Davey Johnson
Don Buford
Reggie Jackson
Cesar Geronimo
Eddie Murray
Dave Concepcion
Harmon Killebrew
Ernie Banks
Mike Cuellar
Dave Leonhard
Joe Morgan
Frank Robinson
Andy Etchenbarren
Merv Rettenmund
Mike Devereaux
Boog Powell
Ed Watt
Earl Weaver
Clay Dalrymple
Paul Blair
Pete Richert

Guest Writer - Amanda

Photo Gallery; The First Game At Nationals Park - Braves vs. Nationals; Nationals Park, Wash., D.C.

Photo Gallery; The First Game At Nationals Park - Braves vs. Nationals; Nationals Park, Wash., D.C.

To read my thoughts, check the DC Sports Box and also Dave Nichols' piece as well...

I may not care for the current commander-in-chief as leader our country; however, I love this shot and being in the right place at the right time, made the night worth it.

It was a very exciting night to be a baseball fan, and also a photographer...





After Opening Day; O's Lose 6-2

Tampa Bay Rays vs. Baltimore Orioles; March, 31, 2008

Anyhow, I got home about two hours ago, and it was very weird to see the plethora of open seating around Camden Yards today. Now, the game was advertised as a sellout with 46,807 in attendance; however, I'd venture to say that there were 33-35,000 because there were a lot of green seats open.

The weather might have sucked with rain and temps in the 40's, but it was it just not a few years ago that there was a packed house when there were flurries?

Well, Jeremy Guthrie seemed to wilt after 5 innings; however, the bullpen looked solid -- Albers shut the Rays down, and Buress pitched one scoreless inning.

In the end, the Orioles looked aggressive on the base paths, and with their lineup, they'll definitely need to manufacture runs and their margin of error will be razor thin. The pitching needs to come together and the offense will need to garner the most of their opportunities, because right I don't see anyone aside from Markakis or Huff (an outside chance) even hitting 20 home runs.

Outside the park, I was speaking to a member of the media and he alerted me that Aubrey Huff more or less admitted he made a mistake with his comments on the "Bubba the Love Sponge Show" in the off-season, and if he were a fan, he'd boo as well.

Trust me, if you were in attendance, let's just say I'd never heard booing that bad towards one player -- ever.

One more thing -- this is the year the Rays do not finish last. After looking at their lineup and everything else, these guys are no wallflowers.

Orioles Sign Cintron; More Opening Day Thoughts, The Oriole Post in Another Sun Column

The Orioles just signed Alex Cintron to a minor league deal. You've got to wonder if he'll be a potential replacement for Luis Hernandez if he doesn't get it together at the plate or in the field.

Not much is going on aside from Guthrie hitting the showers after being shelled.

Aubrey Huff, boy will he have it tough. When you get booed after getting a hit, you know people are still pissed at you and the anger is not going to go away for a long time.

FYI - I did another interview last week with the Baltimore Sun, and this time it centers on the popular "Crab Shuffle" game. Scott Christ of Camden Chat also contributes to the piece.

Live From Opening Day -- Thoughts So Far

Well, the Orioles are up 2-0 in the second inning, and although it is not freezing, it's not warm either. I'm jammed in a seat, uncomfortable and there are people next to me wondering if I am sane for bringing my laptop to the game and trying to get my own personal (actual) work done & blog a little.

I have to do what I have to do.

Some thoughts:

* The crowd. I have never seen Camden Yards as empty as is now for Opening Day. There cannot be more than 33-35,000 people here and there are large sections of the stadium (we are talking about rows upon rows) empty. It's shocking and in a way tragic as to how things have transpired the last few years. Let us hope we are not going down the road of a Pittsburgh. If that's one thing that's positive, the fans in attendance are lively.

* Aubrey Huff. Did he ever get it -- good lord. The booing by the home crowd was bad, I'd say 95% of the fans did it. He'd better start producing, or it will never end. I'm sure a 40 home run year will get him back into the good graces of fans.

* Kevin Millar. He repeated his dance from last year, and added his kind of poor attempt at the moonwalk.

* The scoreboard looks great; however, I am not a big fan of the fonts used, it's like someone at home decided to use Verdana fonts, rather than something that stands out. The layout is splendid though.

I'm not going to do the picture thing until I get home...

Live From Opening Day -- Thoughts & Something You Can Win From Bank of America...

At Camden Yards now, catching opening day here with Beatlefanatic, and her friend Amanda.

Well, I'll have a full writeup of FanFest when I have more than five minutes to myself this week. Between dealing with my lovely girlfriend, baseball, more baseball, plus my media commitments, I have not had much time to blog.

I am little sad but at the same time rejoicing the release of Jay Gibbons. Like I have said over and over, he was always a nice guy when I talked to him; however, if you seemingly lose all talent and everything else, you don't deserve to have a job.

He could not take a up roster spot that a better, more versatile guy could not have held; alas, he got sent on his way.

I hope the guy the best of luck, but I think his days may be numbered as an MLB player unless he can latch on with someone who will give him regular at bats.

Brian Roberts: I wanted the guy traded for the long-term future of the organization, but you have to respect how's he handled the news and everything else.

Baseball season is here -- the question is now how bad will the Orioles be, or will there be some kind of miracle?

At least the scoreboard looks awesome.

Oh yeah, I saw the first game in Washington yesterday, so if you care, check out the DC Sports Box...


From our friends at the wonderful banking institution, the super massive Bank of America...

It's Spring -- the usual inability to focus at work is expected, but this? Affectionately calling your wife A-Rod? Using hand signals at the dinner table? Slapping the butt of a potential client when a handshake would have been appropriate? It happens -- especially to those baseball fans experiencing "Opening Day Syndrome." Not sure what it is, or if you or someone you love has it? Check out and take the "Are You a Real Fan" poll to find out. And just in case you're in really deep, the site has downloadable tools like wallet card affirmations, office door "do not disturb" signs (see attached sample) , and a boss' excuse note to help get you through it. You can also take the Trivia Challenge for a chance to win an all-expense paid trip for two to the 2008 All Star Game in NY. Now THAT's what the doctor ordered!

Also, per a recent poll of avid baseball baseball fans by Bank of America, did you know:

-20 percent spend less time with their significant other during baseball season
-20 percent would miss an important business meeting to attend an Opening Day game
-15 percent “made up an excuse” about their whereabouts on Opening Day to their boss, spouse or significant other
-25 percent listen to or watch the game on the Internet at work; 40 percent listen on radio at work
-20 percent consider the distance to the stadium when shopping for a home

Red Sox and Yankees fans, among the most passionate, take some of the these behaviors to the next level

-35 percent of Red Sox fans would blow off an important business meeting to attend the first baseball game of the season at Fenway Park; by comparison
-60 percent of Sox fans would allow their child to skip school for an opening day game; 50 percent of Yankee fans said the first home game of the season was an acceptable excuse for skipping school.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

The Fate Of Gibbons…

In a few hours, we'll know if he's made the team or not. Speaking to a few media guys, just out of speculation, they believe he'll be sent on his way and that Scott Moore will make the team...

If anyone attended "The State of the Orioles" at Fan Fest with Andy MacPhail and Dave Trembley they could read in between in the lines.

What do you all think?

The Oriole Post, Camden Chat and Orioles Hangout Mentioned in The Baltimore Sun...

I did two interviews with the Baltimore Sun last week, and one of the articles happened to be posted on the website this morning.

This blog, along with the witty Camden Chat and always informative and massive Orioles Hangout site are profiled in an article by Andrew Ratner titled, 'True Devotion: Blogging About The Orioles'.

It's an interesting read, and chronicles why we starting writing, talking the Orioles online and how we're devoted to them even in their lean years - the good and bad.

The Game Last Night: Nationals Open New Park, Baltimore Beats Washington, 3-0

A day before the Washington Nationals officially start the 2008 season against the Atlanta Braves, a new chapter in the team and city’s sports history was written last night as Nationals Park opened for business.

After three seasons toiling at old Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium in Northeast Washington, 25,000 fans, almost all decked in red and blue, finally got to see the $611 million dollar stadium with their own eyes.

Instead of looking at renderings of Nationals Park, or seeing it from the outside looking in, fans got to finally see what the excitement was about.

Let’s just say the new park is a world away from their old home.

Fans gazed the entire concourse of the stadium, and looked at the team’s new home in amazement.

Between looking at the super huge scoreboard, a field with crisp green grass that will only be used for baseball with the curly “W” engraved in it, and a great view of the action wherever you sat, Nationals Park was a winner with those in attendance.

>>> Read more at DC Sports Box

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Fan Fest

Just got back from Fan Fest, and I was not able to do a live blog today, just because I could not get net access. I'm currently in Washington D.C. covering the Nationals/Orioles game as part of the press tonight.

Well, posts may be few and far between before Tuesday; thus, you should see a few pieces up by Beatlefanatic and I'll pop in here and there.

More later. Have a good weekend.

Friday, March 28, 2008

The Baltimore Orioles Unveil The New Scoreboard - WOW! (From the Baltimore Sun...)

Home is Where the Heart Is For The Nationals: The Team Checks Out Its New Digs (From the DC Sports Box)

Home is Where the Heart Is For The Nationals: The Team Checks Out Its New Digs (From the DC Sports Box)

Okay, this is an Oriole blog, but I am a fan of baseball in general. Here's a story I did for the DC Sports Box, as I got to attend the event at Nationals Park where the players got to see the completed ballpark last night.


With one the biggest days ever in Washington sports history ready to be ushered with the new ballpark opening on the Anacostia waterfront, the spotlight of the baseball world will be on the area Sunday night against the Atlanta Braves.

On Thursday night, the Nationals’ players along with manager Manny Acta and his staff finally got to see their new digs at the ballpark.

For many, it was the first time.

It was like Christmas for many, and for the players – all of whom are obviously grown men, acted like kids who had gotten a present that they ever-so-wished for.

They came immediately on two chartered buses from Dulles Airport en route to Nationals Park, where they rolled into their new home.

The team, flanked by Mark Lerner, principal owner, and Stan Kasten, team president, immediately walked to the playing field, and needless to say they were in awe.

Everyone’s attention immediately went to the super huge high-definition scoreboard which everyone gazed at, pointed and commented about to no end.

Players split up into packs, and just walked on the crisp, flowing, perfectly manicured green grass and just gazed in amazement seemingly forever.

General Manager Jim Bowden commented briefly when asked about the ballpark, “Amazing – 10 out 10, and you could not have asked for anything better.”

Upon leaving the field, the players went directly to the large oval-shaped clubhouse and for many, it was like stepping into a newly purchased house --- alas, only with the finest amenities and somewhere you can be at peace and as All-Star Dmitri Young simply quipped, “wow”.

Read More >>>

The Rundown: The 5th Starter; The Saga of Gibbons, Spring Training Home, Everything Else...

Well, the 2008 regular season is upon us, and the good news is we now know who our fifth starter is --- Brian Buress. I figured he'd get the nod after his strong start, and like I said the other day, he was a great spot starter for the first half of the season, but he wilted and it seemed the more time went on, the less effective he was.

Only time will tell if he can stay consistent throughout the 2008 season. Considering the expectations of the pitching staff, he'll be given ample opportunity to get a permanent shot in holding down the role.


After everything, Jay Gibbons may not be suspended, after all.

In a piece in the Baltimore Sun yesterday, "The commissioner's office and the players union are negotiating changes to Major League Baseball's drug policy in the wake of the Mitchell Report, and the result could be the rescinding of Gibbons' 15-day suspension for violating the substance-abuse prevention program."

Ok, if he's not going to be suspended -- if I were Andy MacPhail, I'd give Gibbons these two options -- either go down the minors, or be cut from the team and take his money. Baltimore made a mistake with his signing; thus, it may be time to cut the losses, or have Gibbons try to retool at the lower levels.

I could care less how much Gibbons makes -- he's not a viable player right now on the squad and he's taking up a roster spot of guys more worthy (item: Scott Moore, Tike Redman).

Basically, Peter Schmuck believes that Jay Gibbons sucks and needs to be cut.

Note: Now Gibbons' suspension has been put on hold while baseball figures out what the hell to do with the drug testing procedures and penalties.


I usually don't have much sympathy for multi-millionaires, but what's going on with Roberts is ridiculous, and now he "does not feel a sense of closure despite Andy MacPhail's assertion that a trade for the second baseman is unlikely."

Guillermo Quiroz is the new backup catcher.

Luis Hernandez has looked awful in the field, and just as bad with the bat. He may get the starting spot; however, why do I think Brandon Fahey might sneak his way in thanks to his play this spring training.

Rocky Cherry was put on the DL with a strained shoulder; the Examiner has a piece on Andy MacPhail and where he got to today, as well Pressbox has a piece on him; Steve Trachsel's contract was purchased from Norfolk -- thus, he's officially on the team; Jones is settling in with Baltimore; and the Examiner's Tony Giro, is telling us what we all know -- it's going to a be long year, plus yet, another positive (no, negative) piece from Rafael Alvarez.

There will be a new scoreboard Camden Yards this year, and it is expected to be showcased on Opening Day.

And yes, Bedard is still pitching un-acelike in Arizona.

Amber Theoharis thinks miracles can happen for the Birds, maybe -- they will not sniff .500; however, they won't rival the '62 Mets.


Meanwhile, will the O's move to Dodgertown? I hope so, but for those who want the O's to stay in Ft. Lauderdale, there may be some good news on the horizon:
From The Sun: City and team representatives are optimistic the Orioles will stay in Fort Lauderdale. It all depends on the FAA. An FAA spokeswoman said the agency has asked the city for additional information about airport growth and an appraisal to ensure the FAA receives "fair market value" for use of the land. The city is providing some of the information and is in discussions about the appraisal.

"I think there's been some progress," Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle said. "We're in close discussions with the FAA, convincing them the land is ... recreational and they should accept our appraisal. I'm optimistic we can have a new facility not only for the Orioles, but multi-purpose fields for use for our community."
The Orioles have also signed an option agreement, just in case the issues with the Ft. Lauderdale site can't be settled.

Roberts and The Cubs...

Well, a day after it was announced that Brian Roberts was not going to be traded -- in some parts of the media, they had a field day.

The first comes from the Baltimore Sun's Keith Van Valkenburg, someone who I strongly agree with when it comes to this issue and basically says that Roberts should have been traded.

It's pretty brutal.

It's unclear if the Orioles realize they are, in fact, allowed to trade with teams other than the Chicago Cubs, but that's between MacPhail and his Rolodex, I suppose.

Either way, watching this saga makes you feel like Roberts is in a relationship where the other person is openly shopping around for something better, flirting with other suitors and then trying to pretend that everything is fine each night when they have to come home and share the same bed.

Roberts needs to be traded, and in the coming months, I hope he is. But not for the Orioles' sake. For his own sake. Because frankly, he deserves better than this. I want to see him get as far away from the madhouse of a franchise before it's too late.

You could argue that Roberts did his share to contribute to the Greek tragedy that is the comic fall of the Orioles, admitting that he used steroids one time in 2003. I'd argue that was more likely a symptom of the toxic environment that surrounded him. Any team that would give Sidney Ponson $20 million has only itself to blame when even its smart players start making dumb decisions.
The Chicago Sun Times, Jay Mariotti takes Chicago GM Jim Hendry to town:
Not since Lyle Lovett was dumped by Julia Roberts, I safely can say, has anyone whiffed on a Roberts like Hendry. He has been eyeballing this deal for months, to the point our heads are ready to explode over the rumors, and, yet, there's still no solid reason to think a trade ever will happen. Why Hendry hasn't shifted his focus to other possible acquisitions, I haven't a clue. The Cubs still need a proven leadoff hitter, a veteran center fielder, at least one more starting pitcher and, for all we know, a healthy second baseman, a real shortstop and a closer who won't break down like Humpty Dumpty.

But Roberts and only Roberts has been on Hendry's brain. And Wednesday, the general manager's balloon was popped by a man who probably enjoys torturing the team that fired him and the fans and media who ripped him. You remember Andrew B. MacPhail, MacFail for short. He is the villain here, the ornery Oriole who wants a better package of talent than Hendry, his ex-underling at Wrigley Field, has been offering. The deal, he insists, is on life support, capable of dying Monday when Opening Day arrives for both teams.

Like I said two days ago, both teams needed to make this trade -- not to do it for the sake of a trade -- because both teams had needs.

The Orioles need to rebuild and infuse talent, & the Cubs needed an impact player.

Only the principals know why a trade didn't happen; however, I still think the Orioles blew a golden opportunity to get what they wanted.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Yet Another Positive Review, This Time From Deadspin'

Ah, the online world loves the Baltimore Orioles. Here's another review -- just as harsh as the rest...


The Idiot File: Jose Canseco and His New Book "Vindicated..."

As we all know, Jose Canseco's foray into the literary world with the book, "Juiced", was a mitigated success and perhaps changed the culture of baseball forever with subsequent Congressional Hearings, a so-called drug policy (needs to be a tad bit stronger), and the outing of several players, all of whom, except for Cal Ripken (who was never mentioned to have used drugs, Jose just hated him) have has their reputations tarred and feathered.

However, he's coming out with a second book, "Vindicated", and you've got to wonder why he's coming out with a second book.

One, we already know baseball had a drug problem.

Two, I guess he needs the money and his name in lights.

Yes, he was credible and did help the game face a reality that it dug it's head in the sand on; however, there's no need for a second book.

As mentioned yesterday, He's got his guns on A-Rod; however, he's not biting.

Alex Rodriguez refused to address allegations by Jose Canseco, who claims he introduced the three-time MVP to a steroids dealer.

"It's over as far as I'm concerned," Rodriguez said Wednesday after his New York Yankees lost 4-0 to the Philadelphia Phillies. "No further comment on the matter. I'm just excited to be playing baseball."

In the book, "Vindicated: Big Names, Big Liars, and The Battle to Save Baseball," Canseco claimed he introduced Rodriguez to a steroids dealer named Max. Excerpts from the book, slated for publication on April 1, were posted on before being removed Wednesday.

Canseco wrote that Rodriguez approached him years ago and asked where "one" might acquire steroids. During an interview to be broadcast Friday on ABC's "Nightline," Canseco said he won't produce evidence to back his claim.

"The timing's not right," Canseco said, according to excerpts released by ABC. "Let's see how Alex reacts. Let's see if they all call me a liar again. How's that for you? Let's see if all of a sudden they're going to call me a liar again."

During the ABC interview, Canseco refused to identify Max.


Jose, you have so little decorum. You did the job the first and made a few bucks -- let it go.

Why could this all not have been mentioned the *first time*, if this is true...

The Hits Keep Coming Radio Show Tonight at 8PM

Please take note of the special time of 8 PM tonight. This is a one-time thing and we will be back at our normal time slot of 7 PM next week.

Tune in tonight as bloggers Ian of Sox and Dawgs and Jason of My Baseball Bias join me for our hour long baseball show called, “The Hits Keep Coming” on Blog Talk Radio. Every week at 7PM Eastern Time (6PM Central/ 5PM Mountain/ 4PM Western/Pacific) we chat, analyze and comment about the world of Major League Baseball.

This week: NL West Preview

If you’d like to call in, the phone number is 718-664-6564 or you can send us an instant message if you use AOL IM at hitskeepcoming20.

Please join us at : - 8 PM Eastern Time tonight!

Topics to be discussed this evening:

  • AL West Preview
  • A review of the Red Sox and A’s series in Japan.

MacPhail Speaks On The Roberts Trade Rumors; We're Told The Obvious...

Here we have the news that we all pretty much pretty much have surmised; thus, now it has come from Orioles' COO Andy MachPhail himself.

Our second baseman Brian Roberts, isn't likely to go anywhere before the season begins.

From the Sun's Jeff Zrebeics's piece, MacPhail: "Roberts Deal Unlikely Before Opener"

"Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail acknowledged today that it is unlikely that All-Star second baseman Brian Roberts will be traded before Opening Day.

"I've mentioned to Brian that I think it's unlikely that something happens," said MacPhail. "I think with each passing hour at this point, it's less and less likely. As we get this close [to Opening Day], the greater likelihood is that we're going to start [the season] with what we have."

MacPhail has been in trade talks with the Chicago Cubs about Roberts for several months, but the two sides were unable to agree on a package. The Cubs made a four-player offer of infielder Ronny Cedeno, pitching prospects Sean Gallagher and Donald Veal and a fourth prospect, believed to be pitcher Jose Ceda. However, the Orioles were looking for a fifth player.

Asked if the talks with the Cubs have reached an impasse, MacPhail said, "I don't really like to characterize our discussions with other clubs. I'll leave that to somebody else."
I really thought this deal was going to get done; however, as Spring Training went on, it looked like it was not going to happen just because the chatter between the two clubs had slowed.

Well, I figure that MacPhail did not like what he was offered, and the Cubs might have grown frustrated.

Right now, Brian Roberts is more valuable as a commodity than actually a player on the Orioles. It remains to see what happens during the season, and if Brian Roberts gets off to hot start, expect the chatter to continue.

Alas, he if gets injured -- it's a whole different story.

In my personal opinion, this deal had to get done to infuse new blood into the Baltimore franchise.

As great as Brian Roberts is as a player and community guy, I think the Orioles might have blown a golden opportunity to restock the minor leagues.

Fan Fest 2008 Info: Press Release From the Baltimore Orioles...

From the kind folks at the Baltimore Orioles - Saturday should be fun for the whole family, and there'll be tons to do!


Over 35 Current and Former Orioles to Sign Autographs for Fans

The kickoff to the Orioles’ 2008 season begins this Saturday, March 29, at Camden Yards with Orioles FanFest, a day-long celebration of baseball. Fans will have the opportunity to watch the team work out on the field, get autographs from their favorite current and former Orioles players, participate in Fan Forums throughout the day and pose for photos with the 1983 World Series trophy at the event, which will be held from 10:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. at the ballpark. The event will also give fans a sneak peek at the Orioles’ new ballpark entertainment system, including the center field scoreboards, right field out-of-town scoreboard and auxiliary boards on the club level and upper deck fascia.

Season Plan Holders will have early access to the event, with Gates A & H opening at 9:00 a.m. An exclusive “State of the Orioles” address featuring President of Baseball Operations ANDY MacPHAIL and Manager DAVE TREMBLEY is scheduled for 9:45 a.m.

General admittance begins at 10:30 a.m. at Gate C. Fan forums will begin at 10:45 a.m. and last throughout the day in Pastimes Café. The two-hour autograph session will begin at 11:00 a.m., followed by a team workout at 1:15 p.m. Fans may pose for photos with the 1983 World Series trophy in Championship Café from 1:00-3:00 p.m.

During the two-hour autograph time, eight stations with at least three current players each will be located around the Camden Yards warning track. Fans can select where they line up in the seating bowl to receive one autograph from each player in the chosen section. Coupons will notbe distributed, making autographs available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Video highlights and simulcasts of fan forums will be shown on the Orioles’ new video boards in center field during the autograph session, marking the first time the new entertainment system will be seen by the public.

Former players will sign autographs for fans throughout the day on the Club Level. Those participating include PAUL BLAIR, RICK DEMPSEY, BOOG POWELL, AL BUMBRY, SCOTT McGREGOR, DAVE JOHNSON, LARRY SHEETS, CURT MOTTON, TIM NORDBROOK, BILL SWAGGERTY and RICK KRIVDA.

Other FanFest activities will be held on the main concourse and Club Level throughout the day. The main concourse will feature activities for kids, including a moon bounce, speed pitch and other interactives. Club level activities also include photos with the Oriole Bird and free Orioles giveaways. A memorabilia sale will be held at the Bud Light Warehouse Bar on Eutaw Street. Concessions will be available throughout the day on the main concourse and Club Level.

At 1:00 and 3:00 p.m. at Sports Legends at Camden Yards, curators will host seminars on how to protect sports memorabilia and provide free appraisals of fan souvenirs and collectibles. Orioles Season Plan Holders may attend this event for free, as their Orange Carpet Benefits provide them free admission to the museum all season long. Non-Season Plan Holders who show their FanFest ticket will receive 50% off the admission price.

FanFest admission is free for Season Plan Holders using the complimentary tickets mailed to them as part of their Orange Carpet Benefits. For non-Season Plan Holders, tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children 14 and under and fans 55 and over and are available online at; via phone at 1-888-848-BIRD; or in person at the Orioles’ Official Team Store in York, PA or at the Main Box Office windows at Oriole Park.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

The Roundup: Buress, The 5th Starter, Pitching and Payton...

With only less than six days until Spring Training, the battle for the fifth starter is heating up.

Right now, it looks like Brian Buress may have now become the favorite to earn the position. The bats came alive today; however, more important, Buress went 5 1/3 innings, allowing no runs & six hits.

I see him given the spot just because of the experience level, but he looked good at spots in 2007 and then wilted.

Considering the expectations going into the season, no one expects Buress or anyone to set the world on fire, but you never know.

We, at least know of one guy who will not be on the trip to Baltimore -- Jon Leicester. He was optioned to Triple-A and has 72 hours to accept the assignment or become a free agent since he's now out of minor league options; meanwhile, Brian Roberts sat out today because of back tightness.


The Sun's Jeff Zrebiec has a piece on the Orioles rotation, and for the most part it is a rehash of something we know -- the starting rotation isn't all that strong and towards the end of it, it's weak.

However, I think Cabrera will be close to .500 and will not nearly be as bad as he was last season; Guthrie will be solid, but closer to league average, Loewen will be need to stay healthy if the Orioles are going to be worth anything; alas, Trachsel, I don't have much hope for, but we know what's all about and the fifth spot is still pretty much undetermined.

Well, Jay Payton is a little disheartened that's he not playing everyday and would have liked to earn a chance at a starting job according to a piece by Jeff Zrebeic in the Sun.

Like I have said in previous posts, I find him at least on the field to have always been a real intense individual, and I'm note sure the situation in Baltimore is in line with what Payton needs. I expect him at some point to be traded, but from what I have seen, he's always been a competitor and I'm not surprised he's voicing this to the media -- especially considering his history with the Boston Red Sox.

Melvin Mora is the elder statesmen on the team, and he'll be expected to lend a helping hand, not only on the field, but in the clubhouse...

Monday, March 24, 2008

Roberts Now Likely To Stay...

It looks like our own Brian Roberts should be with us for a while longer. I guess the talks for him will begin when June comes around, or when someone breaks down and gives MacPhail what he wants.

Since the weekend, it was looking pretty obvious to me that nothing was going to go down.

I mean why disrupt someone's life a week before the season starts.

Well, something could happen; however, it's not likely now.

From Ken Rosenthal: Barring an 11th-hour reversal, the Cubs will not trade for Orioles second baseman Brian Roberts before opening day, according to major-league sources.

The teams have been unable to reach an agreement on the players that the Orioles would receive in return. While a revival of the discussions is always possible, the two sides are at an impasse. The Orioles, however, are continuing to scout Cubs minor league games in Arizona.

The Cubs wanted Roberts to serve as their leadoff hitter and everyday second baseman. If they fail to land Roberts, the Cubs will likely use Ryan Theriot in the leadoff spot and Mark DeRosa as their everyday second baseman.

I'm sure there are large segments of the fanbase breathing a sigh relief -- alas, it must suck for Roberts seeing your name in the paper everyday.

If I'm a Cubs fan, I'm a little frustrated...

The Saga of Gibbons

Jay Gibbons.

Right now, perhaps no else on the roster is reviled by fans as much as this fellow.

He's not done much in the past 2 years, and with an exorbitant salary along with his name in the Mitchell Report and drug connection, it's little wonder why people feel the way they do.

Hey, Brian Roberts had his name ensnared in the drug issue; however, he produces -- Gibbons doesn't.

What in the world should we do with him? He’s a nice guy, but at this point, he’s taking up space on the roster and could leave a more deserving guy off (item: Scott Moore).

Do we ex-communicate him, give him another chance, let him play through his problems, or cut him and see if the Orioles can get their millions back? It looks like he’s gone from a decent power hitter, to merely bad, to perhaps now horrible. He’ll be suspended 15 games, but will triumphantly return.

Now, in his absence the Orioles are leaning towards sending Gibbons to minor league while serves out his suspension.

As well, the organization is thinking about having serve his suspension by playing with one of the minor league teams (I think a good idea), but I'm sure if you're suspended by MLB, you cannot play for a minor league team; however, the legal counsel of the Baltimore Orioles are looking into that.

Gibbons is in no position to complain -- especially when you are getting paid $5 million per year as an employee of an organization.

He should try holding a 9-5 job.

At this point, Jay Gibbons has shown us he's not even ready to play on an elite level, much less sit on the bench. If he's smart, he'd be serving himself by getting himself some regular playing time at the lower levels and showing that he can once be again a viable major leaguer.

A Different, Not-So Kind Review of the Baltimore Orioles Via AOL's Fan House...

A weird, unique look on this year's Baltimore Orioles. There's more negativity, snide remarks on the team and what not. Obviously, this is not for those that are easily offended. Some may find it funny, so may not.

I'm watching Cal's 2130th game on MASN - it makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside, and laments on my days as 12th grader in Maryland.

Thanks to AOL Fanhouse for the link and the note.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Honoring Number '44', Elrod Hendricks...

Fans of the Black and Orange know all too well that indelible mark that Elrod Hendricks has left on the Baltimore Orioles franchise and in the hearts of fans.

However, one has to ask why the organization has not done more to honor a man who was a fixture for at least four decades?

As a player with the Orioles for nine years, and the bullpen coach for twenty-eight, Hendricks may not have done much with the bat as a player; alas, his superior defense, warm-hearted nature, the love he showed those who attended games, and loyalty to the community made him special in the eyes of all Baltimore baseball fans.

Sadly, Elrod’s coaching tenure came to an end in October 2005, as the team felt that he could not sustain his level of work due to a stroke. He was to be reassigned as a community liaison; however, he passed away a few days before Christmas of that year in Glen Burnie, Md. — only one day shy of his 65th birthday.

His funeral was attended by many of his former teammates, and coaches; however, that winter, only one Oriole on the 2005 team showed up — Melvin Mora.

Read the rest of this entry »

A Long Season Ahead of Us: Bedard Lit Up; More Roberts, Gloom & Doom, The Roundup...

First off, hope everyone is having a good weekend and we are only less than eight days from real baseball.

It's obvious that the Baltimore Orioles will have their 11th losing season, and parts of the season, will be frankly painful -- let's keep in the mind changes made.

Second, we finally have started to rebuild -- something that needed to be done long ago. With new blood on the roster, perhaps they can be part of the core for the subsequent seasons ahead.

As mentioned yesterday, Jeremy Guthrie will get the Opening Day nod, and the team made the right choice. Steve Trachsel may be a veteran; however, the numbers don't lie -- Guthrie is better.


Well, our former talented, surly, enigmatic ace, Erik Bedard is being lit up in Cactus League action.
From the Sun: Former Oriole Erik Bedard struggled for the third straight start, giving up seven runs in five innings in an 8-3 loss to the Royals. After the game, Bedard -- whose ERA dipped to 9.50 -- said he doesn't know why he's struggling. "They're hitting it out of the ballpark," he said. "It's only going to concern me if it happens during the season."
Not that Spring Training has really been a indicator of performance during the regular season, considering the profile of the trade and the expectations of Bedard, Seattle may want to be a little concerned.

Granted, he started out in a so-so fashion in 2007, and then was virtually unbeatable in May and thereafter, he'll need to get himself in gear if Seattle is going to contend in the AL West


Meanwhile, Brian Roberts is still an Oriole and is dealing with trade talk the best he can, albeit, he's bothered by it all; Kevin Millar was hit on the hand on Friday, and while he didn't break anything, he suffered a laceration on his finger and will miss a few games. As well, he'll be batting (cleanup?) perhaps when the year starts -- the question is will Huff and he even hit 30 plus homers as a tandem?

Roch Kubatko reports that Mike Costanzo, Omir Santos and Luis Terrero will report to minor league camp as they have been cut from the big league squad. Meanwhile, there should be a final round of cuts taking place this week and a lot of the guys mentioned may not make the team due to a numbers game.

The Washington Post's Marc Carig notes that the bullpen, spearheaded by a lot of youngsters, will try improve a portion of the squad that was nothing but atrocious in 2007.

Rocky Cherry seems to be ready for the demotion, despite his excellent Grapefruit League season, and the Baltimore Examiner has a piece on Luis Terrero.

WNST's Nestor Aparicio wonders who George Sherill is; alas, while Nestor loves the Orioles, he knows they won't be good and the losing is killing the community at large, and a vital part of the area around the Camden Yards -- the businesses.

No matter how you feel about WNST, his thoughts on the impact of business that depend on foot traffic from Oriole Park thanks to the losing is undeniable.

Although it is looking like Tike Redman will be a reserve player (assuming he even makes the team), he's still taking out the time to be a mentor to Adam Jones, who will be the everyday centerfielder.

The Baltimore Sun's Ray Frager thinks the Orioles have bright spots despite it all; WNST's Drew Forrester is ready for the Orioles lose, however, he wants to see some improvement with the organization on the field and PR-wise.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Miguel Cabrera Is A Rich Man: Will Sign 8-Year Extension Worth $153.3 Million!

Well, it looks like Miguel Cabrera is about to become a very, very rich man.

According to ESPN, the huge slugger and the Detroit Tigers have reached a preliminary agreement on a contract extension.

Get this, the contract is for eight years and worth $153.3 million! He's still got to go through a physical, but once he does, expect him to sign on the dotted line.


Jeremy Guthrie Named Opening Day Starter

An honor well deserved, and perhaps was the only pitcher worthy at the moment of getting it.

More at the Baltimore Sun -- Link

Anyone Need Three Extra Fan Fest Tickets?

I've got three extra tickets to Fan Fest next weekend; thus, the first person to shoot email to me at gets them.

They are marked, "Complimentary Season Plan Holder Early Entrance Pass", and that should enable you to get into the park early to hear Andy MacPhail speak.

If you're local to the DC area, I can drop them off or I'll send them via Priority Mail (2-3 days).

I just want to give them to fellow fans who are interested in going to Fan Fest.

The event is next Saturday and check out for info...

The Baltimore Orioles Interested in Felipe Lopez?

In light of the Brian Roberts trade talks, the Baltimore Orioles seem to perhaps rumored to be interested in another infielder -- albeit, a currently disgruntled one.

Well, according to Fox Sports Online, Ken Rosenthal reports the Orioles are looking at Washington National, Felipe Lopez.

I'll say one thing, right now, a lot of Nationals fans want to be rid of Lopez --- kind of how some feel about Jay Gibbons, though Felipe may be a lot better with the bat.

From The Nationals, trying to trade shortstop Felipe Lopez, are scouting the Royals' Angel Berroa as a possible replacement. The Orioles are believed to have interest in Lopez, who is guaranteed $4.9 million this season.

Lopez, 27, also has played 82 games at third base and 55 at second in his career, and his ability to fit in at multiple positions could increase the number of teams that are interested in him.

Right now, it is looking more likely that Felipe Lopez will be the reserve infielder up the middle, and he’s not too keen on the idea.

He came to Washington in a trade in 2006, and was slotted as the starting second baseman; however, a poor 2007, questions about his attitude along with his makeup, and the emergence of Ronnie Belliard and a healthy Christian Guzman, his fate may be sealed --- for now.

On Tuesday, when he was interviewed by various media outlets on how he feels in Spring Training, a question was thrown out on if he’d be willing to accept a bench spot.

His terse answer was, “Hell, no”.

Although his attitude and hustle is far improved from last season, Belliard and Guzman are simply out hitting him at the plate (Lopez’s average is around .200 right now); thus, Manny Acta made the decision that’s best for the team --- Lopez will sit.

With the situation as it is, Lopez could move back into a starting role if his numbers pick up and either Belliard or Guzman gets off to a slow start; however, he will more than likely be dealt.

Could he fit in with the Orioles? I don't know if this would be the place for him, but he could be a substantial upgrade over our shortstop options, is young enough, and could benefit from the change of scenery?

Now, who would the O's give up?

Friday, March 21, 2008

Cubs Punk A Coach -- Damn

Roberts Hot & Bothered With Trade Talks?

Brian Roberts bothered by trade talks? Wow, you don't say?

I think this has been pretty obvious for, um, since week as he talked with USA Today.

In article in the Baltimore Sun, Roberts confirmed the obvious --- he's bothered by the talks --- thus, in my opinion, I would not blame him one bit.

Granted, I should not have sympathy for a guy making $8 million per year: however, he's a human being and certainly not a machine without thought.

"At some point in your career, your name is going to be thrown out there in trades and it's going to create some uncertainty," Roberts said before the Orioles' 7-4 loss today to the St. Louis Cardinals. "But, no, I didn't expect this to go all the way through spring training. It's not something that I'd want to go through every year, that's for sure."

As well...

"When you're talking about your life circumstances, yeah, it's tough not to think about it," said Roberts, who went 0-for-4 today and hit into two double plays, his spring average dropping to .293. "I'm trying to block it out the best I can. But that's tough when everybody wants to talk about it. It's frustrating at times. And times, you say, 'It's out of my control.' Most of the time, that's how I look at it. I'm here for a reason right now and I'll make the best of every day, but there comes a time where you'd like to know what's going on."

Look, we all know that baseball is a business -- a huge on that generated revenue to the tune of $6 billion; however, you do have to feel for Roberts.

He's more valuable now as a pawn and a commodity rather than a member of the Orioles.

With about eight days remaining before the 2008 season, it is looking more and more likely that he'll be an Oriole. I was almost sure that he'd be a goner by week'd end, but again, it looks like there's a snag -- after three or four months of talking.

In my eyes, this deal needs to be done for the sake of the future of the Baltimore franchise.

Roberts has the chance to play for a contender with one of the amazing franchises in sports, and the Orioles simply need to improve and get as much talent as they can for the future.

MacPhail's hand should not be forced; however, something needs to happen sooner or later.

More Roberts and Chicago Chatter; Could He Remain In A Baltimore Uniform For The Near Future?

Here's more chatter about Brian Roberts, this time again from ESPN's Jayson Stark.

Again, take all this talk for what it's worth, because in the end, there are only a handful who really, really know what's going on.

STRIKE ONE -- MR. ROBERTS: Clubs that have spoken with the Cubs report that their frustration with the Orioles is mounting, after three months on the Brian Roberts trail. Despite all the names rumored to be in this deal and all the scouts who have hovered around all those names all spring, the Cubs have been indicating they still haven't been told by Baltimore what it would take to get this trade done.

Now add in the fact that it's less than two weeks to Opening Day, and that The Angelos Factor could gum up these talks for who knows how long, even if they make progress. And it's no wonder the Cubs are beginning to think this seemingly inevitable trade won't ever happen after all.

There's been more talk on this trade than I can even fathom. Although the vast majority of feel something will happen; however, it may not.

Read More Here...

Cal Ripken Video -- "A Baltimore Fan"...

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Yet Another Oriole Team Review, From

The great sports network, MVN and Firebrand of the American League reviews the 2008 version of the Baltimore Orioles. It may be kind of harsh, but I think it is fair and accurate.

Link --->

The Red Sox Arrive In Japan -- Video (I Think It's Insanity...)

The Red Sox, your new road, I mean air, warriors...

Their road trip to Japan, and then to Los Angeles is insane...

Quick Hits: The Oriole Roundup...

Yesterday, Adam Loewen did not look good -- in fact, he got skewered. The Orioles lost 12-3, as he came back from shoulder tendinitis, and gave up four runs on four hits which included four walks and two hit batters in just 1 2/3 innings.

Well, as gifted and as competitive Adam Loewen may be, he's been struggling in Spring Training and you've got to wonder if his arm struggles are to blame, or he's trying to get comfortable.

He says that he's unfazed.

However, whatever is happening, he needs to get resolved in a little less than two weeks as the Orioles begin their season.

The Sun's Jeff Zrebeic
has more on the story, as does Spencer Fordin, and the Examiner.


A lot of people have been noticing that Melvin Mora is playing with a renewed sense of enthusiasm, looks to be focused, aggressive and seemingly ready to lead. The Sun's Peter Schmuck has a story on this, and notes Mora is trying to help and be a role model to the young Orioles...

Mike Constanzo, who's had a good spring with the bat despite the strikeouts, will most likely head to Triple-A Norfolk; Spencer Fordin has a piece on Orioles rebuilding process & Andy MacPhail; George Sherill will close and MASN Sports has more on the new Oriole; meanwhile, the fifth starter in the pitching rotation battle continues with Matt Albers and Brian Buress, but the Orioles Hangout site has a problem as to how the process went; Jim Johnson also wants a shot at making the team; The Sun's Jeff Zrebiec has a Q&A with fans about the team.

Brandon Fahey, despite his size and his appearance, has a pretty good shot of making not only the team, but also may be the starting shortstop if Luis Hernandez does not improve.

Finally, former Oriole closer, Gregg Olson has been inducted to the team's Hall of Fame -- congratulations! As well, the team also announced yesterday that they're naming an award after William "Wild Bill" Hagy for his unbridled love for the team, and Traveling secretary Phil Itzoe will also be inducted into the team's Hall of Fame.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Brooks and Eddie Immortalized On Wine Bottles

Here's a story I found on Youtbe: Fox 45 in Baltimore reports about Charity Wines for Brooks Robinson Chardonnay and Eddie Murray Cabernet -- cool stuff.

Should make a nice gift or collectible for any Oriole fan...

Here's another from Channel 11...

Whoever uploaded these videos onto Youtube, you're awesome...

Keith Olbermann Disses Major League Baseball For the Episode With the Red Sox Coaches...

Keith Olbermann disses Major League Baseball for their action against the Red Sox coaches, nice.

Well, the Red Sox ended a threatened boycott today of their final spring training game in Florida and their flight to Japan, as they resolved a dispute against Major League Baseball over paying coaches for the season-opening trip overseas. According to, a source said that all staff associated with the trip will be compensated.

The game against Toronto started an hour late when the team voted unanimously not to play or go to Tokyo after learning coaches and staff would not get a $40,000 appearance fee for the Japan trip. Players said they believed that fee was part of the original deal.

According to the major league source, in the past, the coaches' compensation has come from the players' portion of the pool. This time around the coaches were eliminated from that pool.

The source said that coaches, managers, and training staff will all be compensated and that the final amount is expected to exceed $40,000 per man. It's unclear whether it's $40,000 or even more because the receipts from the trip will be split at the end.

"Everyone connected with the trip will be fairly compensated," baseball spokesman Rich Levin said.

Kevin Youkilis, the Red Sox player representative, said the agreement still needs to be put in writing and the compensation for coaches and staff "is not the greatest thing that we wanted for them, but it's good."

He stressed that the players felt strongly about not going to Japan without a resolution.

"The club's working on stuff and trying to get money where it needs to get," he said. "It was definitely an experience of a lifetime and it ended in a good way."

Sorry, Major League Baseball deserves all the criticism it gets in this episode...

The Road Jersey Issue (Posted on Oriole Magic...)

I don’t think any debate has brought out the emotions of people than the issue of the team’s road jerseys.

As was rumored last season, it was rumored the the team was looking into instituting the road jersey of the 60’s back into play, but that idea got shot down.

Well, it looks like for sure the road jerseys may stay as they are as the Baltimore Orioles are looked upon as a “regional team” that encompasses the Mid-Atlantic region, including Pennsylvania and North Carolina rather than just singular to the city and surrounding counties.

The team has had that territory since the mid-70’s until this mid-part of this decade; however, with the Washington Nationals in the fold, is it time to give that idea up and have the team exclusive to the city?

As well, once again, should ‘Baltimore’ return to the road jersey or not? Do you care about this issue or not?

How about having 'Baltimore' on the road jersey at least 1/2 of time as an alternate uniform?

Meet Our Closer....

Well, if you haven't heard, George Sherill is now the Oriole closer. Keep in mind, he's only the closer because Chris Ray is injured, and will more than likely be out of the duration of the season.

From CNNsi: George Sherrill was picked Tuesday to be the Baltimore Orioles' closer, an unlikely assignment for a one-time situational left-hander who spent the first four years of his professional career toiling in independent leagues.

"I think any short reliever wants to be the closer, wants to be that go-to guy," said Sherrill, one of four players acquired from Seattle for left-hander Erik Bedard on Feb. 8. "I think we're going to have a really special bullpen. I think anybody in this bullpen is going to be good and any of them could close. To be named the one, it's pretty special."

With right-hander Chris Ray recovering from elbow ligament replacement surgery and manager Dave Trembley preferring to use left-hander Jamie Walker in a setup role, the job fell to Sherrill.

Trembley had decided on the 30-year-old Sherrill early in spring training, but asked the left-hander to see how he felt in exhibition games.

"When he first asked me, I wanted to tell him (yes), but he asked me to hold off," said Sherrill, who has four career saves. "I wanted to get the feel for it and get my feet wet in the spring."

Sherrill, normally a slow starter in spring training, responded with a 3.00 ERA, no walks and six strikeouts in five appearances covering six innings.
You go George -- grab the bull by the horns. Let's hope you're a lot better than what we had last year...

The Hits Keep Coming Radio Show -- Tonight: NL West Preview & More...

Tune in tonight as bloggers Ian of Sox and Dawgs and Jason of My Baseball Bias join me for our hour long baseball show called, “The Hits Keep Coming” on Blog Talk Radio. Every week at 7PM Eastern Time (6PM Central/ 5PM Mountain/ 4PM Western/Pacific) we chat, analyze and comment about the world of Major League Baseball.

This week: NL West Preview

If you’d like to call in, the phone number is 718-664-6564 or you can send us an instant message if you use AOL IM at hitskeepcoming20.

Please join us at : - 7PM Eastern Time tonight!

Topics to be discussed this evening:

  • NL West Preview
  • The now resolved uproar in Red Sox Nation

You can listen to last week’s show by going over to the sidebar on the left and look for the Blog Talk Radio section.

See you all tonight!!!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Hear Me Opine About the Baltimore Orioles on MVN Radio...

As some of you know, I also do a lot of commentary on Oriole Magic over the Most Valuable Network aptly known as

For many of you who've never heard my voice, you can hear yours truly opine and analyze the new look 2008 Baltimore Orioles on MVN Radio! I chat about 20 minutes on various topics concerning the team and also on the blog itself.

Looking back now, I probably should have hit on a topic or two, but I was in lull at work and trying to get as much content in as possible in a limited amount of time.

A special shout to Brandon Rosage for giving me the opportunity.

Link ---> MVN Radio

Signature Showcase on March 8th

Signature Showcase; March 8th - BWI

The rainy Saturday morning, when many prefer to stay in their pajamas, brought baseball fans of all ages and loyalties together at the BWI Hilton Hotel.

The Signature Showcase, presented by MAB Celebrity Services and Ironclad Authentics, was an event including autographs from a number of former pro athletes and a variety of vendors promoting teams, new products, or selling items. Attending players included Bill and Cal Ripken, Reggie Jackson and many more. A full list, in order of appearance, is included below.

The Orioles, Redskins, Reds, and Yankees are some of the teams that were represented. However, the star of the day was Cal Ripken Jr. He signed autographs for hundreds of people for two hours, stopping occasionally to pose of pictures and shake hands. Ripken made it a point to take time with each seeking person. He was polite, kind, gracious for each item (including an old chair from Memorial Stadium) he autographed, and was enjoying the time to catch up with a few old friends.

The other highlighted player was Reggie Jackson, a former Yankee. In the past, Jackson had portrayed a dislike for the city of Baltimore. On Saturday he was nothing but smiles as he signed balls, pictures, bats, and other memorabilia and chatted casually with other players and the personnel.

The inviting firm, Maroon PR, led by Bonnie Shenahan, was promoting Cal Ripken’s Real Baseball. Real Baseball is an online video game which has been compared to fantasy ball. This free program allows a person to pick players for a team and then use the ‘characters’ to compete against friends or other teams. For more information or getting started yourself check out

The event was well planned and a great place for a fan to meet his/her favorite player, make memories, and collect memorabilia. Pictures of the event will be incoming shortly.

Attending Players:
Billy Ripken
Benny Ayala
Jim Palmer
Dick Hall
Curt Mutton
Cal Ripken Jr.
Tony Perez
Brooks Robinson
Johnny Bench
Davey Johnson
Don Buford
Reggie Jackson
Cesar Geronimo
Eddie Murray
Dave Concepcion
Harmon Killebrew
Ernie Banks
Mike Cuellar
Dave Leonhard
Joe Morgan
Frank Robinson
Andy Etchenbarren
Merv Rettenmund
Mike Devereaux
Boog Powell
Ed Watt
Earl Weaver
Clay Dalrymple
Paul Blair
Pete Richert

Guest Writer - Amanda

The Roundup; Oriole News and A Documentary Featuring An O's Fan Nominated For A Sports Emmy

As we are heading to the 2008 regular season, I think the two keys as to how far the Orioles get in a few weeks will be with Daniel Cabrera, young pitching along with the bullpen.

Daniel will be key part whether the Orioles take the next step to respectability or if they are stuck in neutral. Based on what I saw on MASN Sunday, he looked like what many saw in the World Baseball Classic and his final start 2006 against New York. I think his new found professionalism and seriousness (at least what I have seen so far), could lead to a breakout year. Of course, he needs to control his pitches and just keep the basic fundamentals in place.

In terms of the pitching, will the young Birds will take the leap forward, considering the expectation of inexperience in the rotation. With the departure of Erik Bedard from the rotation, a lot of pressure will be put on them to succeed.

Can Guthrie take his game to the next level? Will Loewen come back healthy? is Trachsel close the end or can he pull out more tricks from the black cap? Will we go after another starter outside the organization?

The tragedy of the Baltimore team in 2007 was the bullpen – yes, the $40+ million big ticket item. Aside from Jamie Walker who was solid as the left handed specialist along with Chad Bradford, things were a mess. Both Walker and Bradford were way over-used, thus over-exposed and the Orioles had to rely on youngsters from the lower levels, journeymen and retreads from other teams to patch it up.

We know Bradford and Walker will be consistent, but how will Sherill do as the closer? Will Aquino, Burres, Sarfate and whomever else deliver?

So many questions, so few answers.


Garrett Olson has been optioned to Triple-A Norfolk; meanwhile, George Sherill, who has been excellent in Spring Training, was been handed the closer's role.

With a less than two weeks to go, the Orioles face a littany of decisions to made -- mainly, the fifth starter, shortstop and possibly second base.

Meanwhile, Jim Hoey is hurting; Scott Moore, who has had a great spring is back in the lineup after illness, and Brandon Fahey is in the hunt for a roster, and possibly a starting spot.

As well, former Oriole manager Sam Perlozzo wants to manage again and Dave Jauss came to the team for 'serendipity'...

Monday was a sad day for those in Vero Beach, as the Los Angeles Dodgers, who have been in the area will more than 60 years to conduct Spring Training will more than likely leave for Arizona; however, the Orioles might move to the facility. Vero Beach citizens seem more than open to welcoming the Baltimore organization, but the town right now is all Dodger blue.


A friend and Oriole fan, Tom, shot me a great email this morning about one of our young, but fellow fans, Ray Daugherty.

Well, I have met the young man more than a few times, myself and he was featured in a documentary that aired on ESPN called "Never Miss A Game" and as well, "This Week in Baseball", where TV crews document his day at home with his mothers, Marie and Deanna, and at the ballgame.

Despite he being only four years old, he's just as knowledgeable as any Oriole fan in the game.

The documentary he was in has been nominated for a 2008 Sports Emmy.

The Yankees Visit Virginia Tech University

The New York Yankees were on the campus of Virginia Tech University this morning to honor the victims of the horrific April 16th shooting tragedy that took 32 lives at the campus in Blacksburg, Va., last year.

The team is in town for an exhibition game with the Virginia Tech team.

Say what you want about the Yankee organization; however, this was a classy move by the team and their generosity will not soon be forgotten.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Thoughts From A Sunny Trip to Florida...

As many of you know, I went to down Florida for a few to check out this year’s rendition of the Baltimore Orioles. With the current trade rumors, innuendo and whatever else going on out there, I am just going to quickly jot down what I saw in Ft. Lauderdale two weeks ago.

The season is almost here, everyone!

  • Dave Trembley: I do no think the Orioles could have chosen anyone better for this team. You’ve got a manager who’s hungry for respect and for his team to do well, leading the way and having his players respond. The guys are running down the basepaths, doing the little things, playing aggressive ball (both at the bat and on the field). More than anything, I noticed his interactions with the players --- most notably Adam Jones. Rather than channeling Lou Piniella or LaRussa, he seemed to comfort his players, give praise and treat them like men, rather than robots. Finally, he’s nothing but great with the fans and seems to realize he’s a in great spot and living out his dream. You can’t but only want to root for the man.

  • Adam Jones: Big kid, and although he did not do much while I saw him, he’s batting a little under .400 right now. Despite his miscues in the field early on in camp, I expect him to be focused with the task at hand in the next few weeks as the season commences. From what I have heard and read, he’s quite an articulate young man and one Oriole fans may come to love. Meanwhile, a lot of baseball will be watching to see how he progresses, as he was the centerpiece of the Bedard trade.

    Read More Here...

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