I'm back dear readers.
More on where I was later.
The Orioles still suck. Good to see that little has changed since I went into hiding.
The big bit of news today came from the Baltimore Sun. Apparently Cal Ripken, yes that Cal Ripken, is interested in "returning to baseball" in some fashion. Orioles fans: start speculation - NOW!
1) With Andy MacPhail's contract expiring at the end of this season could the Ironman be positioning himself to take over the front office job next year? Ripken as GM would be an interesting thing for a multitude of reasons. First and foremost he would have to have pretty much complete independence in the role that is to say can you imagine the PR fallout that Peter Angelos and family would face if he needlessly stood in the way of or handcuffed Cal Ripken Jr. in any way? Ripken is, still, the most respected man in baseball as well as a United States goodwill ambassador and pretty much a demigod to every 99% of Baltimoreans between the ages of 18 and 50. Ripken as GM would pretty much be the most powerful GM the Orioles have had in decades.
2) Ripken as head of player development and minor league coordination? The Orioles have a problem and it starts with player development. No one really knows how much money the Orioles spend in the mysterious catch-all banner of "player development" but we do know that the Tampa Bay Rays spend roughly $ 20 million a year, according to Deadspin. Now I think it is safe to assume that the Orioles are not spending that type of money, either that or they truly are the most unlucky team in the history of modern baseball. The idea of Ripken overhauling that system is enticing to many but it is not likely to show any massive impact on the major league level for a couple years after he, presumably, takes over. What would Ripken do? Well, something different I suppose because as of today no one has been able to effectively outline what the Orioles are specifically doing "wrong" in this system. Now, where there is smoke there is usually fire and right now the kitchen is filling up.