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A Baltimore Orioles blog. News, analysis, commentary on Major League Baseball, the Baltimore Orioles, American Culture and whatever comes to mind.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 4:22 PM
Via Roch's blog: Mark Pieper, who represents Erik Bedard and Brian Roberts and has become a household name around here, just sent out an e-mail to Sun reporter Jeff Zrebiec and a few others, disputing the MLB.com story posted last night that said the Orioles contacted Bedard late Sunday night about signing an extension and learned that the left-hander is seeking a seven-year, $100 million deal.Meanwhile, now according to ESPN.com (via Rotoworld), the Orioles have gone back to the Mariners for written language that Seattle will submit Adam Jones and George Sherrill for physical examinations.
Make your own judgment. I’m just passing it along.
“The report that appeared yesterday regarding Erik Bedard on MLB.com is wholly inaccurate and contains nothing factual. Quite honestly, that type of journalism is irresponsible and reckless.”
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 10:48 AM
I'm at the University of Maryland-Virginia game right now, and just was able to read the Sun online, and yes, things are even getting more bizarre.
Perhaps the newest story might a CYA excuse, or it might be true, but as most fans can probably gather, the Bedard deal has hit a snag.
Of course, that's the understatement of the week.
From the Sun: Orioles owner Peter Angelos didn't veto a proposed trade that would have sent ace pitcher Erik Bedard to the Seattle Mariners for a package headed by young outfielder Adam Jones, team president Andy MacPhail said today.
Asked if Angelos was responsible for nixing a deal, MacPhail responded, "No." He wouldn't elaborate further or provide details on why the talks appear to have hit a snag.
It's believed that the two sides agreed to the framework of a trade that would have sent Bedard to the Mariners for Jones, left-handed reliever George Sherrill and 19-year-old starter Chris Tillman, along with at least one other player. Jones told a reporter in Venezuela on Sunday that the deal was complete and he was headed to Baltimore for a physical.
... The change in events led to an industry-wide perception -- and several Internet and newspaper reports -- that Angelos is holding up the deal. But the reports have been based more on the Orioles owner's reputation than any concrete evidence.Not to add more fuel on the fire, but this move needs to be done for the viability of the team and the fanbase -- thus, a lot of people have their opinions, and they want Roberts and Bedard to stay; however, when you overturn your roster and get 9, 10, 11, 12 players for 3 to help in the rebuild process -- you do it.
"This is vintage Angelos," said one baseball executive who requested anonymity. "It is probably the first time that Andy has had to deal with something like this. I don't want to say it is a bad philosophy, but [Angelos] is one of those guys who doesn't like to make a deal unless he absolutely knows it is the right one. That's a fine way to practice in the real world, but that doesn't work in our world. We don't play in the real world."
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 4:43 PM
Now that the Santana drama is over, we can now focus on the soap opera that's going on in our backyard with the one and only Erik Bedard.
This morning, erstwhile Sun Blogger, Roch Kubatko says this about the Bedard trade talks:
"...We’ve been startled by enough false alarms when it comes to trades, but people I’ve spoken with over the last 24 hours sound more encouraged about Erik Bedard going to the Mariners. I still believe it’s going to happen.
It’s been so insane lately, we’ve almost forgotten about Brian Roberts and the Cubs. Those talks supposedly are active, as well. We’ve just been too preoccupied with Bedard to care as much.
I admire team president Andy MacPhail for being able to sleep nights. I’d be a total wreck if my roster was this unsettled so close to spring training."
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 7:07 AM
From ESPN: The Mets have agreed to a trade with the Minnesota Twins to acquire Johan Santana for four prospects, pending the left-hander passing a physical and working out an extension with New York.
The Mets have been granted a 48- to 72-hour window to work out a new contract with Santana.
If New York can work out a contract agreement with Minnesota, the Mets will send outfielder Carlos Gomez and pitchers Phil Humber, Deolis Guerra and Kevin Mulvey to the Twins.
The trade agreement was first reported by USA Today on its Web site.
"Right now, the Twins have no comment," the Twins' head of communications, Mike Herman, told 1050 ESPN New York's Andrew Marchand. Mets vice president of media relations Jay Horwitz also had no comment.
Santana, who completely controls his fate because of the full no-trade clause he possesses, asked the Twins to make a decision, which is why Minnesota imposed a Tuesday deadline for offers from the interested teams.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 2:27 PM
Well, this story is becoming even more outrageous and with even more twists and turns.
Ah, from Roch's blog:
... I've been in meetings most of the day and have an interview at 5 p.m. - not for a new job, so don't get your hopes up. But I wanted to address the rumor (because it's what I do these days) that Adam Jones has a degenerative hip condition and that's why the Erik Bedard trade hit a snag.Well, there always has to be something new with this story, because anything involving this team it seems can't be anything but dramatic.
All I can say about the topic is that the Orioles became concerned with something related to Jones, and the fact that they wanted to bring him in for a physical before alerting Bedard's agent that a trade agreement was reached should send off signals. But we've heard nothing up to this point about his hip.
Maybe this will prove true later. We'll find out soon enough. But nobody at The Sun would go on a radio show and blurt out this kind of information without being absolutely positive (and obviously reporting it in the paper first). That's dangerous territory, especially when you're possibly impacting a young athlete's reputation and future earnings.
For the sake of Jones, I hope it's false. For the sake of the person who said it, it better be right.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 1:01 PM
As the story of why Bedard is still an Oriole & why he's not the left coast continues to become a conspiracy of mass proportions, take a look at Roch's blog this morning. I very much concur with what he says. I hope Bedard could stay with the Orioles and remain the ace, but the fact of the matter is that he's 28, never pitched over 200 innings and has been an injury concern.
I could live with that fact of Bedard staying if he were on a .500 team and signs were pointing upwards; alas, they are not and will not so for a good, long while.
Let's not forget the Angelos angle.
I'll wait and see what happens before I start to unload on the owner, but there seems to be so many stories being spread about, I don't know what to believe. If for some reason there was involvement by Angelos in nixing this deal, the negative view of the franchise already by some in the media will only become that much worse.
From Roch's blog: I assume that it’s going to be a slow news day at the warehouse, though, as team president Andy MacPhail often says, everything can change with one phone call.
There’s plenty of talk that owner Peter Angelos vetoed the Erik Bedard trade to the Mariners, one theory being that he read comments from the left-hander that ran in Saturday’s edition of The Sun and became convinced that a long-term deal was still in the cards. For that to be true, Angelos would have needed to skip the part where Bedard indicated that he didn’t want to be part of a rebuilding project.
You won’t have a hard time finding “sources” who point the finger at the owner, but it’s necessary for Angelos, MacPhail or someone from the Mariners to confirm it. And for fans of both teams to know if talks are dead – which I don’t believe they are – or if a trade still can be finalized.
Sign Bedard to an extension, and the Orioles still will be rebuilding instead of contending. Acquire four or five players from the Mariners in exchange for Bedard, and the Orioles will be rebuilding, but also moving forward in their attempts to contend within the next few years.
This trade needs to get done. Bedard’s value could plummet the longer he stays here, either because of injury, ineffectiveness or his pending free agency. And from what we know, the Mariners currently have the most enticing package of prospects on the table because the Reds aren’t giving up Jay Bruce – who just happens to be on the cover of the Baseball America Prospect Handbook that I received in the mail yesterday.
Wait until the July 31 non-waiver deadline to trade Bedard, and certain players may no longer be available.
If the Mariners are in contention and Jones is having a breakout season, are they still going to make him the centerpiece in a trade with the Orioles, or will they choose instead to pick up a veteran who won’t cost them as much to make that final push for a division title?
And how will Bedard feel about staying with the Orioles if he’s been made available all winter, knows a trade nearly went down this week and then is told to report with the pitchers and catchers on Feb. 13? It’s a business, but that doesn’t mean he has to like it. And trust me, he won’t like it.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 7:48 AM
Guys & Gals, if you have a chance, check out Rick Maese's article, "Familiar Hangup for O's" currently on the Baltimore Sun's website.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 8:04 PM
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 7:54 PM
Ok, this whole Bedard thing is becoming like an episode of 'Melrose Place' from back in the day. As an Oriole fan, I am somewhat frustrated and also a realist -- change has to happen, but how soon will it come?
The latest from Rotoworld:
"The Seattle Times in confirming that Adam Jones told a Venezuelan paper on Sunday that he was being traded to the Orioles, and an Orioles source told the Baltimore Sun that Jones was scheduled for a physical Monday in Baltimore.
Those plans changed, probably because the Orioles still hadn't gotten approval from Peter Angelos. Jones later changed his story, saying he didn't tell anyone he had been traded and was going to Baltimore for a physical, but that's almost certainly what the Mariners told him to say. The Times' Geoff Baker heard the audio recording that confirmed Jones' quotes from Sunday. All indications are that the Bedard deal is in the hands of Angelos, but that Angelos had something else to do today and wasn't ready to give the thumbs up or down."
All I know is that something happened, but on the way, something definitely changed.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 6:48 PM
Well, here's the latest from Roch's blog. Considering everything that has been going on since the season ended, could we have expected less than a drama with a litany of twists and turns?
From the Baltimore Sun (Roch's Blog): "Orioles executive Andy MacPhail wasn't kidding when he told The Sun last night that he didn't expect Adam Jones to arrive in Baltimore today for a physical. Or to sample the steamed crabs and a Natty Boh.
You'll want to check out this story on the Web site of the Mariners' flagship radio station.
Am I surprised that Jones isn't here? Absolutely not. Did I expect him to remain in Venezuela? Absolutely not.
I assumed that he returned to the U.S.
If I'm the manager of Jones' winter league team in Venezuela, I'm afraid to write his name in the lineup.
Jones apparently is backpedaling now and denying that he told a reporter in Venezuela that he had been traded to the Orioles. George Sherrill can't seem to decide whether he was instructed to take a physical in Baltimore.
My take: Jones and Sherrill were told to stop talking so much. There isn't a deal in place at the moment. They're still property of the Seattle Mariners, just as Erik Bedard continues to be slated as the Orioles' Opening Day starter until told otherwise. And it has nothing to do with pending physicals."
"Talks between the Seattle Mariners and Orioles about a trade involving ace pitcher Erik Bedard are at a standstill.
A source familiar with the talks said a potential deal is being held up on the Orioles' end and unspecified complex issues still need to be resolved for the trade to go through. One of those might be Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail getting the approval of club owner Peter Angelos.
Mariners center fielder Adam Jones, the centerpiece of the Seattle offer for Bedard, was originally expected to be in Baltimore later Monday in preparation for a physical Tuesday, according to a club source. However, those plans have been scuttled, an indication that the deal has either hit a snag or is currently on hold.
The Orioles currently don't have a physical scheduled for Jones, the source said.
"We are where we were last night," said MacPhail on Monday. "We have no agreement."
MacPhail said that he didn't expect any developments for a couple of days. Asked if an agreement could be pending, MacPhail said, "I don't know."
A source indicated that the Mariners and Orioles have agreed to the general framework of the deal, which would send Jones, veteran reliever George Sherrill, 19-year-old pitching prospect Chris Tillman and one or two other prospects to the Orioles for Bedard."
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 3:28 PM
Well, although Andy MacPhail is manning the ship and making the personnel decisions, Peter Angelos still plays the role God and has the final say.
I will say I have no idea of what will now happen.
Here's the latest from ESPN:
Orioles owner Peter Angelos hasn't yet signed off on the proposed deal that would send Erik Bedard to Seattle, according to a source familiar with the Orioles' internal discussions.
The same source also indicated that Angelos wasn't informed of the particulars of this latest proposal until late Sunday and that he won't be available Monday to confer with the Orioles' baseball officials because of a personal matter.
Given Angelos' long history of vetoing trades, one baseball man who has dealt extensively with Angelos predicted that "this could get more interesting as it goes along" if Angelos has yet to approve this deal.
Indications are that the trade is still likely to happen, given the abrupt departure of its centerpiece, Mariners outfielder Adam Jones, from winter ball. But the source confirmed a Baltimore Sun report that Jones isn't currently scheduled to fly to Baltimore for a physical.
Jones, Sherrill, minor league pitcher Chris Tillman and a fourth undisclosed prospect are believed to make up the package of players the Orioles desire in return for the 28-year-old Bedard, who was 13-5 last season with a 3.16 ERA and 221 strikeouts, third in the AL, for a 93-loss team.
Tillman, who turns 20 in April, was Seattle's second-round pick in the 2006 draft. Baseball America ranks him as the organization's No. 3 prospect.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 12:09 PM
Well, since I will assuredly get minimal work done here today, here's some words of wisdom from Buster Olney's blog this morning. He's looking at the crystal ball towards the Orioles' immediate future, and it ain't good.
From ESPN's Olney: "If the Orioles do follow through and trade Bedard and Roberts, they will be putting pieces in place that could help them in their attempts to reconstruct their organization. In the big picture, that's the right thing to do. But as they compete within a division that includes the defending champion Red Sox, the Yankees, the sleeper Blue Jays and the markedly improved Rays, the Orioles are poised to have the kind of season that will make you want to avert your eyes.Ouch.
Then again, they lost a game 30-3 last year, so is it really going to be much worse than the way it has been for the last decade in Baltimore?"
Bernadette of the Lady at the Bat blog sent me this, and as a part-time member of a media outlet, this made me shake my head. (Anyone find this pose suggestive?)
Well, the huge chain conglomerate, Target, has engaged in a move that I think is pretty asinine.
Here's what Berandette wrote: "Recently a blogger contacted Target to complain about their latest advertising campaign, which includes the image on the left. Her issue is that it's demeaning to women. That may, or may not be true. If Target had somehow incorporated snow into the image, their intended message about the woman making snow angels would have been clearer. What I have a problem with is how they responded to the blogger's complaint: They told her that they couldn't respond to her inquiry because "Target does not participate with nontraditional media outlets."
What was the point of that? I'll tell you what the point was: to insult the blogging community. If you don't participate with nontraditional media outlets, then don't participate! There's no need to send a look-down-your-nose message saying so. Just ignore the inquiry, especially when you claim to have "limited resources" and "a small public relations team."
The New York Times picked up on the story, and you have got to read Target's response:
Target to the blogosphere: you’re irrelevant.
That was the message the cheap-chic retailer seemed to convey in an abrupt e-mail message to ShapingYouth.org, a blog about the impact of marketing on children. Early this month, the blog’s founder, Amy Jussel, called Target, complaining about a new advertising campaign that depicted a woman splayed across a big target pattern — the retailer’s emblem — with the bull’s-eye at her crotch.
“Targeting crotches with a bull’s-eye is not the message we should be putting out there,” she said in an e-mail interview.
Target offered an e-mail response:
“Unfortunately we are unable to respond to your inquiry because Target does not participate with nontraditional media outlets,” a public relations person wrote to ShapingYouth.
“This practice,” the public relations person added, “is in place to allow us to focus on publications that reach our core guest,” as Target refers to its shoppers.
Word of the exchange quickly spread and the blogosphere did not appreciate the slight. “Target doesn’t participate in new media channels?” asked the Web site for the Word of Mouth Marketing Association. Target “dismisses bloggers” commented the blog for Parents for Ethical Marketing. “Ahem! So bloggers don’t count!” Ms. Jussel chimed in on ShapingYouth.
Could Target, the ever-hip, contemporary retailer, really have such a low opinion of blogs, the ever-hip, contemporary media channel?
Yes, at least for now. “We do not work with bloggers currently,” said a company spokeswoman, Amy von Walter, who agreed to speak with this traditional media outlet.
“But we have made exceptions,” Ms. von Walter said. “And we are reviewing the policy and may adjust it.”
Target’s policy is to focus limited resources on the big media outlets, like television stations and newspapers, which reach large numbers of shoppers. With a small public relations team, she said “we want to make sure we are making an educated decision and we live up to any promises we make, in terms of service.”
So what about the offending ad? Ms. von Walter said the ad — part of a marketing campaign that appeared in sales circulars and a large billboard in Manhattan’s Times Square — depicts a fully-clothed woman making a snow angel. Other ads featured a man skating over the bull’s-eye, she said.Sigh...
Ms. Jussel, who described herself as a faithful Target shopper, was not impressed. “Any customer deserves a response to a concern, so I found this to be a shortsighted, ill-conceived judgment call,” she said.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 8:00 AM
Ah, since Sunday night, it seems that business has picked up for the Orioles. Now, take a look at what CNN/Sports Illustrated writer John Heyman wrote last night...
First, more news on what most fans know already:
There are signs the deal is getting closer -- such as Jones telling reporters that he's headed to Baltimore for a physical -- but late word Sunday night is there's still some internal debate in Baltimore over the deal. Club owner Peter Angelos is famous for nixing deals involving his best players.
Mariners GM Bill Bavasi said by phone Sunday night that it was not a done deal. "We're not there yet,'' Bavasi said. "I can't tell you anything.''
Meanwhile, Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail echoed that sentiment to the Baltimore Sun. "We do not have an agreement with the Mariners," MacPhail said.
Sources told SI.com that Jones (.314 with 25 homers at Triple-A Tacoma), reliever George Sherrill (2-0, 2.36 with Seattle), a strikeout artist who could bolster Baltimore's injury-ravaged bullpen, and minor-league pitcher Chris Tillman (6-7, 5.26 at Class-A High Desert), are among players who have been prominently mentioned in trade talks. Catcher Jeff Clement (.275 with 20 homers also at Tacoma) was discussed at one point, but it's believed the Mariners will hold onto him.
If the Orioles do complete the Bedard trade, word is they would likely then send All-Star second baseman Brian Roberts (.290, 12 HR, 57 RBIs, 50 SBs) to the Chicago Cubs for prospects, possibly outfielder Felix Pie and pitcher Sean Gallagher (3-1, 2.66 at Triple-A Iowa). Pie batted .362 with nine home runs and 43 RBIs at Triple-A Iowa but hit just .215 in 177 at-bats with the Cubs in 2007.
However, the Roberts deal appears to be waiting on completion of the Bedard deal.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 9:58 PM
Ah, more from Roch's Blog...
"Now it's The Sun's turn:
A high-ranking Orioles official told Jeff Zrebiec that a trade hasn't been completed with the Mariners.
And this is why we don't rush to file a story on the Web site until the necessary calls have been made.
Now we can speculate on what happened.
Did Mariners general manager Bill Bavasi jump the gun when he contacted outfielder Adam Jones and reportedly told him to fly to Baltimore? Did Jones misunderstand what Bavasi told him and jump the gun by telling a reporter in Venezuela that he had been traded?
I wouldn't look for Jones to show up at the warehouse tomorrow unless he's taking a tour. Or helping to install the new scoreboard."
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 7:07 PM
It looks like all the information on the deal is coming from one side -- Seattle. Well, despite the news posted a while ago, the Sun's Roch Kubatko has not gotten any confirmation from the Baltimore Orioles on a deal yet.
From Roch's blog: I would love to file an entry confirming the Erik Bedard trade to Seattle and releasing the names of the prospects that Orioles president Andy MacPhail acquired in return for the left-hander.
Just one problem: Nobody on the Orioles' side is confirming that a deal is done.
All we have so far is Adam Jones telling reporters in Venezuela that the Mariners told him that a trade was completed and he should fly to Baltimore. Pretty strong stuff. But the media here needs someone from the warehouse to provide confirmation, and it's not happening.
Jones and pitchers George Sherrill and Chris Tillman are rumored to be involved in the deal, but Sherrill told the Seattle Times' Geoff Baker that he hasn't heard a word about being traded. You'd think that he'd know, if Jones already has been given the news.
More to come, I'm sure.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 6:24 PM
From Rotoworld (via the Seattle Times):
'Adam Jones is flying to Baltimore for a physical on Monday, suggesting the Orioles and Mariners have agreed to an Erik Bedard trade.
Jones said he's been told the deal is done, though he doesn't know who is going with him to Baltimore. Asked by the Seattle Times tonight, George Sherrill said he had heard nothing to suggest he's being included. Top prospects Chris Tillman, Jeff Clement, Carlos Triunfel and Wladimir Balentien are among the players whose names have come up in rumors.'
Wow. Stay tuned! A tip of the hat to Ian of Sox & Dawgs for emailing me before arguably one of the biggest games here in the area right now -- Duke vs. Maryland.
If you want more perspective on the deal, check out the thread on Orioles Hangout...
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 5:23 PM
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 5:20 PM
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 3:24 PM
Being that not much is going on with the Orioles on the trade front besides rumor and speculation; alas, let's throw some more chatter out there...
From Rotoworld (via the Seattle Times): General manager Bill Bavasi indicated Thursday that the Mariners are still in the mix for Erik Bedard, saying that acquiring a "top-of-the-rotation" starter remains the team's goal.
Bavasi added that the team has made its final offers for several pitchers, with speculation that he was referring to Bedard, Johan Santana and Ian Snell. "I don't think you can give a club its terms and its price," Bavasi said. "We can move a premier prospect and numbers [of players], but we're not going to move a number of premium prospects."
Ace pitcher Erik Bedard admitted today that he is resigned to being traded at some point this season, and he is disappointed that the Orioles haven't made a greater effort to sign him to a contract extension.
"If they don't want me, that's the best thing to do," Bedard said in a phone interview with The Sun. "Obviously, they don't want to keep me because there are a lot more talks [about] trading me than signing me. What am I supposed to do? I just go with the flow. I'll keep it as it is, and go with it, day by day."
>>Read More At Oriole Magic...
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 6:01 PM
The FOX show "The Moment of Truth" -- which premiered to 23 million people on Wednesday -- sent a letter to the Rocket's manager, asking Roger to appear. Contestants on the show are asked a series of questions while hooked up to a polygraph machine -- and then have to own up to their answers in front of an audience comprised of their friends and relatives.
Howard Schultz, creator and Exec. Producer of the show, says Roger can put the steroids question to rest once and for all -- and donate his winnings to the charity of his choice. Schultz writes, "People have stood in awe at your incredible accomplishments in baseball. This show could let the world know that you are an incredibly courageous person, as well as to clear your name in front of a nationwide audience, all in the name of charity."
Calls to Clemens' management were not immediately returned.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 3:36 PM
John Gibson, the world's sickest asshole, comments on the death of Heath Ledger.
Despicable. How this man still remains on the air at Fox News is beyond me.
What the f**k is wrong with him? Oh yeah, he's a hateful, vile person who has just shown to the world who he is. Too bad John Gibson could not do this when the young man was alive.
Of course, he would have been too much of a chicken shit to do it.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 3:20 PM
Like I have said time and time again, despite the lack of fans going to games at Oriole Park Camden at Yards for the past several years, fans do care very much for the team.
If the losing would stop, and the team could be one that connects with the community, the fans will return. If you take a look at Roch's blog, message boards like the expansive Orioles Hangout, The Baltimore Sun and Orioles.com, as well also as popular team blogs like Camden Chat, the Wayward O, Oriole Magic, Oriole Central and countless others, the rabid fan interest and opinions are still there.
Ray Frager, in an article in the Baltimore Sun commented on the fan situation by saying this:
"You might think Baltimore fans have grown indifferent to the Orioles, their interest diminished by a decade of losing baseball. But people clearly still care a lot.Again, the fans do care and love the Orioles, as they have been an institution since 1954, and have brought fans young and old countless hours of joy -- despite the losing.
At The Sun, we can see how any shred of Orioles news piles up page views at baltimoresun.com, often outpacing Ravens news. And listening to sports talk shows Tuesday night, I could hear that passion. Callers were lined up to talk baseball on Amber Theoharis' WHFS (105.7 FM) program and Steve Davis' WBAL (1090 AM) show.
Theoharis had the Orioles' Kevin Millar on with her, and lots of people were calling in to express an opinion not on any potential trade, but just on what should become the team's new music when the players take the field. Meanwhile, Davis and my colleague Peter Schmuck were getting calls from fans who just wanted to be able to reconnect with the Orioles with something as simple as getting autographs.
It seems that interest - along with hope - springs eternal."
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 8:14 AM
I don't live too far away from Washington, and sometimes cover them for another site I work for; however, I find the article below disheartening and fairly sick. As you know, the Washington Nationals are building a new park that should be ready for play by the end of March, but sadly the specter of bitter feelings and racism have seeped into a project that should only leave smiles on the faces of fans in the DC area...
WASHINGTON (Map, News) - Workers at the District of Columbia’s baseball stadium have reported finding a noose on the site, potentially worsening already tense racial relations on the project.
The noose was discovered Tuesday afternoon, said Courtland Cox, an official with the D.C. sports commission, the semi-public group that is monitoring construction of the $670 million stadium. The noose was put together by a white electrician from Maryland who was fired Thursday, Cox said.
Commissioners met Thursday with officials from Truland Electric, the company that had hired the electrician, and the conglomerate that won the stadium contract, to discuss the incident, Cox told The Examiner.
Cox declined to elaborate, but this is not the first time workers from Truland have been accused of racism. Late last year, a group of African-American laborers told their union that they had been called “monkeys” by a Truland supervisor.
A Truland official hung up the phone when asked for comment.
Critics of the stadium project seized on the incident as proof of the bad faith involved in the stadium construction project.
“It’s absolutely stunning,” said Ted Trabue, executive director of the District Economic Empowerment Coalition. “It’s a shame that we’re struggling to hire even a few African-Americans down there and then the few District people down there have to deal with this.”
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 8:00 AM
I am watching the Republican Debate right now (yes, I am a dork), and upon reading Roch's blog tonight, I saw this...
"The Sun’s Jeff Zrebiec reported in today’s editions that the Orioles have held discussions with agent Scott Boras concerning pitcher Kyle Lohse. The club would like to add a veteran starter, but at last check, Lohse was seeking a four-year deal. I don’t see how there’s a match."
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 6:23 PM
From the New York Times:Four people in baseball confirmed that referrals were made from Major League Baseball to the F.B.I. regarding Canseco’s actions relating to the six-time All-Star outfielder Magglio Ordóñez, who was not mentioned in Canseco’s earlier book or in any other report on performance-enhancing drugs in baseball. All four insisted on anonymity because they said they didn’t have authority to speak about the events.
The F.B.I. did not open a formal investigation because Ordóñez said he did not want to pursue the complaint.
Canseco denied that he — or any associate of his — ever asked Ordóñez for money to keep his name out of a book titled “Vindicated.”
“Absolutely not,” Canseco said in a telephone interview Wednesday. He also said he had not been told about being the subject of F.B.I. referrals.
Canseco said he tried to contact Ordóñez several months ago to talk about his books but did not hear back from him. Canseco refused to say whether Ordóñez would be named in connection with performance-enhancing drugs in his second book. “You are going to have to buy the book to see that,” he said.
Reached at his home in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., on Wednesday, Ordóñez said he did not want to talk in detail about Canseco. Although he criticized him for writing his tell-all book, he said he did not want to get involved with any formal investigation.
“I didn’t want to press charges against him,” Ordóñez said. “I don’t want any problems. He is probably desperate for money. I don’t understand why he is trying to put people down.”
He confirmed that he had talked about Canseco’s reaching out to him with Tigers General Manager Dave Dombrowski last summer. The Tigers passed the complaint on to the commissioner’s office in New York, which then filed a complaint with the F.B.I.
Asked whether Canseco had ever specifically asked him for money, Ordóñez said, “No.”
“One of José’s friends was leaving me messages,” Ordóñez said. “I told Dombrowski because I didn’t know why he was calling me.”
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 6:03 PM
Well, this year, the Baltimore Orioles have set a date in stone early for the annual Fan Fest.
Once again, Fan Fest will be held at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on March 29.
It will be held at Camden Yards from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. ET and will start with an open workout for the players on their home field, and host interactive games for kids, autograph sessions and interview sessions with current and former players and coaches.
Tickets for the workout and FanFest celebration -- which cost $10 for adults and $5 for children 14 and under and fans 55 and over -- will be available soon at Orioles.com. Season Plan Holders will receive complimentary tickets as part of their Orange Carpet benefits program.
For links from last year's FanFest:
* info taken from the Orioles.com site...
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 8:33 AM
I think I need to put up a seperate piece in addition to my post yesterday about the Baltimore Orioles.
As evidenced in the past, there is no single man in the Baltimore community that is more universally reviled than Peter Angelos. Unless you have been under the rock for the past ten years, it's no big secret he is getting the brunt of the failure when it comes to the Orioles.
I posted the comment about Angelos on both Oriole Magic, and on my personal blog; therefore, as expected, I got a few responses either agreeing with me somewhat or just plain disagreeing with me and wondering where my head was. I missed a critical word in the passage, so it was sort of construed the wrong way; however, I'm still staying on record as saying Angelos is not solely the cause of the organization being horrible, as it is a myriad of other factors that have added to it.
Well, as know too, his alleged meddling and interference in deals have endeared him to no one. However, like I said yesterday, the revolving door of baseball execs in Baltimore (with the exception of Gillick), bad drafts, poor management, bad signings (Sosa), over-evaulation of their prospects, a lot of former, retired Orioles staying away from the organization, the road jersey issue, the flap with John Miller, Pat Gillick and Davey Johnson, just god awful PR as one poster mentioned (Cuba, the flap with Nestor) have set the franchise back.
Read More at Oriole Magic >>>>
* photo from PressBox Online...
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 10:36 AM
Pal and tag team partner on the Hits Keep Coming Radio Show, Jason MacAdams (btw, who has an excellent blog on the MFY's called My Baseball Bias), opines on Derek Jeter; however, what he states may be heresy - akin to an Oriole fan questioning if Cal Ripken hurt the team with the streak.
Basically, Jason advocates a position change for Jeter, perhaps to the outfield. I think a lot of what he asserts makes a lot of sense, though some fans will be inclined to think otherwise.
Read his post on the LoHud (Lower Hudson, NY Website) and see what you think.
Sorry to make some of you sick, but it's a good read if you're an unbiased fan.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 11:43 AM
Who is Lance Cormier? Why should we care?
He's another body, but at least he's not Victor Zambrano.
The upside: He's young.
The downside: He got hammered in the NL.
Look at his stats on Baseball Reference -- there's not much to see or be hopeful about. Oh yeah, but he's still young and a warm body.
A change of scenery may help this guy, but he's nothing more than a backend for the starting rotation and his salary for 2008 makes him a worthwhile risk considering the state of the Baltimore Orioles. I don't see anything to put him into the upper echelon of greatness (in fact, he may spend part of next season in the minors), but if Cormier could get his act together in Baltimore and be a reliable starter, he could do nothing but help the team.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 11:18 AM
For any fan who has seen Daniel Cabrera pitch, you all know he's got the potential to be something special. On some nights, he can look like Cy Young and a top tier starter; however, some nights, he looks like he's still going through on-the-job-training.
In 2007, a season where the organization hoped that he'd become the man most in baseball figured he would be, he seemed to take step back backwards. He became nothing more than an innings-eater and labored through a lot of tough situations on the mound.
Seeing him interact regularly with some friends of mine after games on occasion, he's a great guy and could be a beacon PR-wise for the Orioles if he was ever given the chance.
However, to get to that point, he has to improve on the mound, and after being in the league several seasons, he needs to take the step forward.
In the end, he'll be judged by his win-loss record, and in 2008, we'll learn if he's part of the problem or part of the solution. If he can get over the hump, he could be an imposing mainstay on a young team that could be on the rise.
With all his physical attributes, he could be something special, but his time could be running out in Baltimore if he does not show that he can be a consistent major league pitcher.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 1:01 AM
Well, it looks like our well-needed retool of the Baltimore Orioles seems to have come to a screeching halt. Fans clamored for change after the sad last two months of the baseball; alas, like I said in my last posting, the team on paper we have now is what will most likely be the one we see in Spring Training.
Reading the news sites, forums like Orioles Hangout, Pressbox, and blogs like Camden Chat there's not a whole lot of news coming out.
What does this mean for us? More losing? More hopeless, humid nights at the Yard? We being 20 games out of first by July?
Right now, we pretty have two players, Erik Bedard and Brian Roberts who are nothing short of valuable commodities right now. Despite all the rumors, reports, back talk and innuendo, both men are still members of the Baltimore Orioles.
Again, I'll say we still have them both under right for two more years; thus, Andy MacPhail can bide his time and look for the best deal possible. 2008 is not about winning or losing, it's about taking the Baltimore Orioles into the future and starting to wipe the slate clean.
Whether that means signing Erik Bedard to oodles of money, or seeing Brian Roberts continue to be PR face of the Orioles remains to be seen. I see the forest from the trees with these two guys, and know for the good of the organization, MacPhail's commodities need to be traded for their worth.
No, we don't trade them to trade them -- let's get some tangible talent on board and get baseball to relevant in Baltimore after June.
This weekend, I had quite an influx of Cubs fans read this blog, which is a good thing. I cannot bring any more perspective into whole deal aside from just being a fan, but the Orioles hold all the cards and Andy MacPhail will make a move when he sees fit.
I had a talk about the Orioles today amongst some co-workers today and as 90% of any talk concerning the Birds of Baltimore lingers towards Peter Angelos.
Honestly, I don't solely put the blame on the Baltimore Orioles being so bad on Mr Angelos -- the team has been not good because he doesn't open up the purse-strings, it's the combination of bad drafts, poor scouting, guys who didn't work out, player over-evaluation, signing the wrong free agents, and depending on re-treads to compete.
The Orioles' scouting department have helped to improve the dire situation at the lower levels by signing Matt Wieters, Billy Rowell and key guys; thus, we are heading in the right direction. However, there's a lot of work to do.
The road may be bumpy, long and miserable, but I have faith in Andy MacPhail and the Orioles scouting department. Well, simply I have faith because, um, nothing else has worked for the past decade.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 8:59 PM
I made some friends last year, but also displeased quite a few people; alas, after much thought, I have decided to do a review of each team for the second straight year.
It may be in another format this year, as opposed to what was done in 2007, but let's have fun with it.
I look forward to all the criticisms, praise and being reviled amongst baseball-heads like myself.
That being said, expect the first few entries this upcoming weekend and up until the start of the season.
For you all who are being stifled by the crazy cold throughout the nation - stay warm!
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 7:39 PM
Perhaps the more things change, the more they stay the same.
Well, read what I saw below on ESPN this morning. Read into it what you wish, but does Andy MacPhail have the power or what? Killing a 7 for 2 deal is a little puzzling, but of course we don't know the details.
Then again, it is only a rumor; this, take it for what it's worth. With less than a month before spring training, perhaps MacPhail is still waiting for the deal he wants since he's got two big hands to play; however, it is looking more and more that both Roberts and Bedard will still remain Baltimore Orioles heading into Spring Training.
The fans wanted more change; however, it may not be happening soon. Is 2008 already a throwaway year like my tag team partner James Baker opines on Oriole Magic?
In one word, yes.
Well, Camden Yard is still gorgeous, and the new HD scoreboard will be a welcome sight.
From ESPN.com: Orioles owner Peter Angelos killed a 7-for-2 trade that would have sent second baseman Brian Roberts and left-handed pitcher Erik Bedard to the Cubs, the Chicago Sun-Times reports.
"I don't think we're going to do anything, to be honest with you," Cubs manager Lou Piniella told the newspaper when asked about trading for an infielder. "If we do, it'll be in the outfield. ? It would be a right-handed bat to help out in center field. I would think that's probably a possibility, as opposed to the other things you all have been hearing about."
The Cubs reportedly are interested in Rangers outfielder Marlon Byrd.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 8:57 AM
Despite the losing of the past decade, and the frustration amongst many fans on the direction of the organization, old-school Oriole fans have a good reason to get all warm and fuzzy inside although we are deep into winter now.
The Baltimore Orioles will host a celebration this month to honor the 25th Anniversary of the franchise's last World Series win. According to the Orioles.com, on Thursday, Jan. 31, at 7 p.m. ET, the ESPNZone at the Inner Harbor will honor key members of the team such as Ken Singleton, Scott McGregor, Al Bumbry, John Stefero and Bill Swaggerty.
The event is free.
Well, visitors to the ESPNZone will have the opportunity to meet all of those players, and to participate in a question-and-answer session hosted by Orioles broadcaster Jim Hunter. To conclude the night, the team will replay the television broadcast of the clinching World Series Game 5.
Should be a great night for Orioles fans, young & old.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 8:04 AM
Confident that Major League Baseball has turned the page on the steroid era and that the game will continue to prosper, owners voted unanimously yesterday to extend commissioner Bud Selig's contract through the 2012 season. The 73-year-old Selig had been scheduled to retire after the 2009 season.
more stories like this
Selig, who had talked openly about retiring, has received high marks from ownership during his 16-year tenure, which has included the implementation of interleague play and a wild-card playoff format. The game has also realized huge revenues, and the value of franchises has risen dramatically. But Selig also has been criticized for a slow response to the growing use of steroids, amphetamines, and human growth hormone during his tenure, though in the past three years MLB has implemented a strong drug policy.
"I'm proud of what I've accomplished, but there's much work to be done in many areas," Selig said.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 7:47 AM
Okay, I admit I watch American Idol -- here's worst and perhaps the creepiest auditions I have seen from the start of this season...
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 5:58 PM
Sorry about the lack of posts recently - I have been working on a project and also started a business venture this month which has required a lot of my free time as of late; thus, Beatlefanatic will pick up some of the slack until this weekend.
Harking back on old friends, it looks like Miguel Tejada has not at all had a good week.
In fact, he's had a real bad week.
First off, his brother dies in an motorcycle accident; second, it looks like Congress wants to not to only revisit statements made by former Orioles All-Star Miguel Tejada in past about his drug use, but he may now in legal hot water as evidenced from the events of this week in Washington.
If you compare what she said a few years ago and what was in the Mitchell Report, he may be in a sad predicament if he's found to have lied. Well, no one is ever under obligation to talk to any federal staff or investigators unless you are subpoenaed, but lying is a whole other issue.
Considering the profile that drug/PED use has now in the media and in the eyes of the government, Tejada may have even more questions to answer.
Third, people in Houston are not happy with the relevations with Tejada, but it seems that Drayton McLane, owner of the Astros is willing not to judge him.
Translation: If Miguel hits .300, drives 90+ runs, hits 25-30 home runs and makes Houston a contender in a weak NL Central, all will be forgiven; however, if he hits .270, hits 15 homers, makes errors in the field and does nothing with his bat, then he'll be marked as a sinner considering his contract.
Performance is everything; thus, stayed tuned to the Tejada saga. If he does well with his bat, the Hoston fans won't care whether he's eating bread or pumping himself up with drugs.
To Read More Orioles Bits and Pieces, Check Out Oriole Magic!!!>>>>
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 7:31 AM
For those in the Baltimore Metro area, who might be interested in attending...
WHAT: Babe's Birthday Bash, a celebration of the birthday of arguably the greatest baseball player of all time.
WHO: Presented by The Babe Ruth Museum
WHERE: Sports Legends Museum at Camden Yards
BACKGROUND: Fans will have the opportunity to mingle with some of their favorite Baltimore sports personalities on February 8th as the Babe Ruth Museum celebrates the 113th birthday of baseball's greatest star, Baltimore native George Herman "Babe" Ruth.
The event will feature admission to Sports Legends Museum at Camden Yards; unlimited food and beverage; free parking at Camden Yards; a silent auction of unique sports memorabilia and a free tour of Geppi's Entertainment Museum. In addition, the event will mark the grand opening of Sports Legends Museum's newest exhibit entitled "Framing the Game: the Art of Our Sports," which will feature a variety of local and national subjects and artists. Personalities confirmed to appear at this time are former Orioles Chris Hoiles, Ron Hansen, Joe Orsulak, and John Stefero, as well as former Baltimore Colts Lenny Moore, John Mackey, Mike Curtis, Jim Mutscheller, Doug Eggers, Tom Matte, Howard Stevens, Rick Volk and Stan White.
The Museum will also present the second annual Babe Ruth Museum Community Service Award to Baltimore Orioles' second baseman Brian Roberts for his work with the University of Maryland Hospital for Children (UHMC). Due to a previous commitment, Roberts will not be in attendance to receive the award but a member of the Orioles' front office staff will be on hand to accept the award on his behalf. The award is bestowed to an active or former professional athlete, or individual with ties to the Maryland sports industry, who demonstrates a strong devotion to the City of Baltimore and State of Maryland by giving back to his or her community.
As an added bonus, members of the Babe Ruth Museum will be invited to take an exclusive "white-glove" tour of the archives at Sports Legends Museum.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 7:22 AM
Ah, the current problems I see in America.
* The War in Iraq
* The Economy and the Housing Market
* The Cost of Gas
* Education, Crime, and the welfare of children
* Immigration (some may beg to differ, I think it's way down the list)
We all love baseball, but do we find that as big of a problem as the aforementioned items? No. However, Congress felt the need to have two days of hearings concerning drugs in baseball.
What have we learned through all this that we didn't know already? Very little; however, baseball has been rightfully skewered, and it's good to see that Bud and company are finally willing to take culpability for their inactivity and indifference towards PED use in the sport despite making billions.
Nice. It's good to see government at work.
The videos below show the highlights from the past several days:
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 6:05 AM
Could this man be the starting shortstop of the Baltimore Orioles in 2008? Granted, he's not a slugger like Tejada with the bat, but he's got a sweet, sweet glove and surely did not make a fool out of himself when he got playing time in '07.
Still, the days of having a guy like Belanger or Ozzie Smith in the fold are over -- we expect our middle infielders to not only have a glove, be athletic in the field, and make the big plays, but a big bat as well.
From all accounts (according to the Baltimore Sun), he struggled in Winter Ball, but picked up the slack in the playoffs.
If Luis is the everyday shortstop in '08, with the lack of the offense the Orioles seemingly have on paper already, will he do?
Will we be happy as fans with number 2 in the field every day?
To Read More Orioles Bits and Pieces, Check Out Oriole Magic!!!>>>>
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 9:06 AM
Well, the Baltimore Orioles after the huge Tejada trade seemingly have not done much in the Hot Stove season besides a few minor moves.
As we are a little more than a month away from pitchers and catchers showing up at camp, I wonder if they’ll be anymore personnel moves made?
Personally, I think there may be moves made --- however, to fill holes. It looks like more and more by the day, Erik Bedard and Brian Roberts, no doubt the big trade chips on the team will still be in
I think some people are frustrated by the lack of action by Andy MacPhail in respect to Bedard and Roberts; alas, I think he’s trying to get the best offer for his talent available and will not give them away. Will a deal be done? That remains to be seen.
However, the immediate problem is that the team needs a closer, a little more bullpen help, a shortstop, a big bat, perhaps another starting pitcher and another outfielder.
Yikes. The Orioles do have some options at the lower levels, but considering the choices out there right now, there’s not much to jump up and be happy about. As well, if one looks closely, there are very, very slim pickings from the free agent market; thus, fans have the right to be somewhat concerned.
I would have liked more rapid change and an overhaul of the roster, but right now, I am going to wait and see how MacPhail’s plan works out. We still have good young pitching, and a few guys could break out, but I am going to consider ’08 and possibly ’09 as a wash.
I’m willing to be patient, but I also want to hope for upward signs of improvement.
Rick Mease has a great column on the patience of fans and their insatiable need for news in an instant as evidenced by the Brian Roberts trade talks last week.
The out-dated scoreboard in center field at Oriole Park is finally being torn down in place of a super large high-definition scoreboard.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 12:38 PM
The congressional hearing involving Roger Clemens, Andy Pettitte and former trainer Brian McNamee was rescheduled Wednesday until Feb. 13 so lawmakers can gather evidence and coordinate their investigation with the Justice Department.
Well, the question I have is does the United States Government have anything better to do? I'm all for getting rid of drugs in sports, but to create a spectacle out of it for the sake of getting to observe the system at work is beyond me...
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 7:35 PM
Topics that were discussed:
* Roger Clemens and Brian McNamee
* Goose Gossage in the Hall.
* Billy Beane and his trades
* Hot Stove Roundup
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 7:32 PM
Evening everyone, I've had a busy day and still do not feel quite 100%, so I decided to just lay in bed in a for a few.
Well, there have been talks of the Baltimore Orioles moving their Spring Training home from their current location in Fort Lauderdale, Fl. to Vero Beach's Dodgertown. According the Orioles Hangout website, a source with knowledge of the situation confirmed that the Orioles have signed an agreement with Indian River County to replace the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodgertown in Vero Beach, Florida. The Baltimore Sun's Roch Kubatko in his blog mentions this, but there has not been a comment forth-coming from the team on that front.
We shall see what happens.
Posted by Anthony Amobi at 4:59 PM
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