The game was tied at 3-3, in the eighth inning, and then Oriole Magic bust loose. Lou Montanez continued his impressive start by starting the explosive really with an RBI double that put Baltimore in the lead, and then the hits and walks kept coming.
Montanez, Kevin Millar and Melvin Mora (boy, is he hot) had three hits each and drove in six of the Orioles’ runs.
Daniel Cabrera – well, was Daniel Cabrera. Ok, he was not bad; however, just uneven on the night. He went a little more than five innings, and Francisco Cabrera got the win on Thursday.
Alberto Castillo got hammered for three runs in the ninth inning; however, the Orioles had enough of a cushion where Cleveland’s late rally was inconsequential.
Will Brian Matusz sign, or won’t he? With a little less than 13 hours until the deadline, it remains to be seen; however, it looks he will – but it is looking like a game of chicken right now, and it’s about getting both sides to agree on a deal.
Orioles president Andy MacPhail said last night that there has been no change in the negotiations since the previous day, when the two sides arranged for Matusz to fly in from the West Coast.
Matusz's agent, Marc Agar, has not returned calls seeking comment. Both sides have been mum about the type of deal and financial package that Matusz has been seeking. However, the fact that he was in town taking a physical is a sign that the sides are discussing a majorleague deal. That type of contract is contingent on a player passing a physical examination.
Last year, the Orioles gave Georgia Tech catcher Matt Wieters, the fifth overall pick in the 2007 draft, a franchise-record $6million signing bonus, but it was not a majorleague deal and he didn't take a full physical before the agreement was reached just minutes before the deadline.The Orioles haven't given out a majorleague deal to a draft pick since signing pitcher Adam Loewen to a five-year pact in 2003.
Essentially, a major league deal means that Matusz, generally regarded as the top pitcher in the draft, will get a guaranteed contract and the club will have less flexibility in using minorleague options."We have things to work out, but we're not there," Jordan said. "I think everyone has a pretty good feeling about it, but I don't want to say more than that."
In other news, it looks like Aubrey Huff, Jamie Walker, and Jay Payton passed through waivers – meanwhile, George Sherrill didn’t and the Orioles pulled him back.
I don’t mind Sherrill staying, but his peripheral stats are not looking as good as they once did, and you have to wonder did his value peak in mid-July? I didn’t expect any of the other guys to pass waivers; however, I’m surprised no one is biting on Huff at all considering his 2007 season. Granted, I think the Orioles would have to eat some money, but who turns down a guy who has hit 25 homers with a .300 average?
Just very puzzling.