Wednesday, August 31, 2011

A Walk-Off Win and MacPhail...

Last night, the Orioles earned a walk-off against the Toronto Blue Jays, 6-5, in ten innings as Jake Fox and Ryan Adams both drove in runs to snap a two-game losing skid. Well, as memorable as the game was on Tuesday, much of attention on the night was focused on Andy MacPhail and his job status in Baltimore.

I know a few sources, including Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun, have hinted at this fact for a while: Andy MacPhail, once the season ends will move on from his current position in the organization.

The story picked up some steam as on Tuesday, USA Today's Bob Nightengale reported that two sources within the Orioles' brain trust said that MacPhail will walk away at the end of October - when his contract expires.

If that does happen, I would not be surprised at all.

Right now, MacPhail is keeping everything close to the vest -- as he usually does -- and refused comment on the report to the Baltimore Sun. He is waiting until after the season to announce whether he'll be back in Baltimore -- or not.

The only thing I can say is that MacPhail has had a mixed amount of success with the Orioles (depending on whose perspective you get).

He was able to get Adam Jones from the Seattle Mariners in a very lopsided trade for Eric Bedard, bring in Buck Showalter and improve the farm system somewhat; however, the bottom line is that the win-loss rate for the Baltimore Orioles has not changed much in his four years at the helm.

Whether it is because of poor drafting, bad decision making, not spending the money or whatever -- the Orioles will finish 2011 with their 14th straight losing season.

The Orioles are still bottom feeders, and a lot of MacPhail's well-laid out plans - most notably, with the new additions in 2011 - didn't work out at all.

>>> Read More

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Orioles Earn Spilt With Yankees in Four Game Set...

On Monday night, the Orioles lost a close contest to the New York Yankees, 3-2. Alfredo Simon started the game on the mound, and while he gave a solid effort, the Oriole bats could not do enough to counter New York.

Despite the loss, Simon looked very good and perhaps threw as well as ever on Monday night. In the end, maybe the big man does have a spot in the Baltimore rotation.

After his troubles in the winter, and into the 2011 season, Simon seems to be pitching as well as he ever has in an Oriole uniform.

Simon (4-7) took the loss and pitched seven solid innings, while giving up three runs. He gave up a run in the opening frame, and then two more in the fourth inning off a Nick Swisher homer.

They were hamstrung by Yankee pitcher Freddy Garcia’s slop and a Yankee offense that did enough to win.

Baltimore got two solo home runs from Mark Reynolds (who hit his 31st) and also J.J. Hardy (who hit his 26th, a career high).

>>> Read More

Monday, August 29, 2011

Orioles Lose Game 2 of Day/Night Doubleheader

Yesterday afternoon, we all witnessed Zach Britton throw a seven inning gem. He won the game for the O's, 2-0.

Well, this was not quite the case for struggling lefty Brian Matusz and Game 2.

Matusz, who is just 1-7 on the season, started late due to injuries. He never fully recovered, losing 2-5 mph off of his fastball. Also, his command looks nothing like it did at the end of last year.

In the second game of yesterdays day/night doubleheader, Matusz threw 97 pitches over 5.1 innings and gave up 6 earned runs. Those runs came from homers by Curtis Granderson, Robinson Cano, and Nick Swisher.

This loss puts Matusz at 1-7 on the year, with a whopping 9.07 ERA.

These stats are nothing compared to last years Brian Matusz who went 7-1 with a 2.64 ERA after Buck Showalter took over. Actually it seems to be just the opposite.

Matusz has shown some signs of recovery, having his fastball hit 91 again. Hopefully he gets back to his old form as a solid number two guy in this rotation.

Chris Jakubauskas, Mark Hendrickson, and Brad Bergesen all made relief appearances in yesterdays game. They allowed a total of two more runs to be scored.

The final score was 8-3, Yankees.

>>> Read More

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Orioles Take First Game of Day/Night Doubleheader

The Orioles won their sixth game in a row as they put together a strong pitching performance and defeated the New York Yankees, 2-0. They took the first contest in a day-night doubleheader.

A morning that started out ugly weather-wise after Hurricane Irene swept through the Mid-Atlantic, turned out to be a gorgeous sunny, summer day in Charm City, with temperatures only in the low 70’s.

Rookie Zach Britton on the afternoon held his own against the New York Yankees, going seven strong innings against the ever-so-powerful Yankee lineup. He improved his record to 8-9.

Reliever Jim Johnson pitched a scoreless eighth, and Kevin Gregg logged his 19th save in the ninth inning. It's nice to see Britton have some success at the big-league level after struggling before June, going down to the minors and finding himself on the disabled list. Britton struggled again once he was promoted to the majors again in early August, but he's been on a roll in the past week.

New York Pitcher Bartolo Colon kept the Orioles off the scoreboard for much of the game. He threw over six-plus shutout frames until Vladmir Guerrero plated Nick Markakis with an RBI-single in the seventh inning.

>>> Read More

A Long Day of Baseball Ahead...

We all survived Hurricane Irene, and now baseball is back this Sunday as the Orioles today play a day-night doubleheader at Camden Yards.

It looks like baseball will be a played as the crazy weather has headed up north. It looks like the damage in the area was minimal – minus some power outages, trees being uprooted and branches being snapped.

It was really windy on the drive up I-95 from Montgomery County into Baltimore with periods of rain; however, everything seems fine here as the clouds are grey, but there’s no precipitation to speak of at the moment.

Right now, the ballpark doesn’t look too full. Maybe there’s a late crowd, or the crappy weather that came through the region caused fans to stay home.

>>> Read More

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Saturday, August 27, 2011

O's Defeat Yankees for 5th Straight Win; Flanagan

After a miserable, a shocking badly period since June, the Orioles finally had a week to remember -- on the field. They swept the Twins and opened up their series with the Yankees with an easy 12-5 win on Saturday.

With the death of Mike Flanagan on their minds, the Orioles used a six-run second inning to defeat the Bronx Bombers for their fifth straight win. Mark Reynolds hit his 30th homer – a three run shot, J.J. Hardy hit his 25th and Matt Wieters hit his 14th. Youngsters Ryan Adams and Matt Angle each had two hits.

The Orioles pounded an awful A.J. Burnett, who was the object of complete scorn by the legions of Yankee fans in attendance. He gave up nine runs – all earned – in five innings. Burnett is 9-11 on the year, and right now in New York, I am wondering if he will even last up there.

Tommy Hunter came through with a solid performance, going seven innings and giving up four runs. The Yankees made things interesting with the bats as they started to turn in on in the latter half of game; however, they were pretty much buried after the second inning.

Like I said, it’s been a good week for Baltimore. They’ve been playing some crisp baseball and it’s amazing how much better Mark Reynolds looks at first, plus the play of Ryan Adams. As well, Matt Angle – despite being a tad undersized – has filled in nicely for Adam Jones (who has missed a few games), and shows some amazing hustle, plus energy.

>>> Read More

Friday, August 26, 2011

A Somber Thursday

The Orioles got a well-deserved 6-1 win over the Twins on a somber day throughout the sport due to Mike Flanagan's untimely passing. They earned a four-game sweep in Minnesota.

Jo-Jo Reyes pitched six strong innings of one-run ball for Baltimore, and Mark Reynolds added some fireworks with his 29th homer - a three run shot. Craig Tatum also drove in two runs in the winning effort.

For the second straight day, an Orioles' victory was completely overshadowed.

Sadly, the minds on many in the media and also fans were on Mike Flanagan. Who knows what really happened with him on Wednesday, what the reasons were, or what not to lead to an ultimate decision; alas, the more I heard from others on the web, news and the radio about Flanagan, the more heart-wrenching his story became.

I spent a while yesterday after work reading how witty, smart and engaging Mike was. Obviously, a lot of us fans didn't know him super well at all; however, after the reports and tributes towards Flanagan, you felt that you knew him a little better and seemed like someone that would be an excellent friend.

It sounded like he was much more than a very good pitcher, but a man who was highly respected by his peers and will be ultimately remembered for so much good.

>>> Read More

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Sun Report: Flanagan took his own life

The morning after.

Today, the Baltimore Sun is reporting that Mike Flanagan took his own life last night. He was found dead by a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.

Please, readers. If you or someone you know is dealing with depression or just needs someone to talk to; do not wait - act.

The idea that Mike Flanagan was this despondent surely comes as a shock to everyone who watched him but it just proves the point that we never truly know what demons one man might be wrestling with. Gerry Sandusky (on WBAL) cited a source that speculated Flanagan was "despondent" over how the "community perceived his role in the organization". Frankly, unless there is a note that clearly spells out Mr. Flanagan's intentions it is completely irresponsible, bordering on insulting, to speculate on his mental state or the reasons behind his actions.

>>> Read More

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Mike Flanagan, 1951-2011

The Baltimore Orioles won 7-1 last night in Minnesota, finally winning a road series on the back of the offense and an excellent start by Jeremy Guthrie; however, the victory was overshadowed by some terrible news that struck pretty much every fan in the region.

Reports surfaced that Mike Flanagan - MASN Broadcaster, former Oriole pitcher, coach and executive - was found dead on his property early yesterday evening.

I figured the terrible news was true, but as nothing official came out from the team or with the major paper in town (at the time), I thought it could have been a mistake or it might have been some drifter, drunk, etc.

It was not.

Flanagan was indeed dead at 59 years old. I remarked to a friend, "I saw just him the other day on TV. Did he die of a heart attack, aneurysm or something like that?". He looked healthy, alert and I didn't see anything to indicate any health issues.

Then, I heard on the radio this morning that his death was a result of a suicide. If that's true, it is even more saddening.

Then again, it doesn't matter the way Flanagan died -- all I know is that he seemed to touch a lot of people's lives and he is no longer here.

I can only say that I met him once as a fan - where I got his autograph - and also several times as a blogger during team sponsored events, such as "Blogger Day". He seemed like a good guy, down-to-earth, with a sardonic sense of humor and definitely knew the game -- in and out.

>>> Read More

Orioles Win Again in Minnesota; Pie DFA'ed

Yesterday, the Orioles defeated the Twins, 8-1, for their second win in a row. Alfredo Simon pitched very well, going eight strong innings and only giving up a run.

The offense came alive again, as Nolan Reimold homered and drove in three. As well, Mark Reynolds also plated in three runs, J.J. Hardy had three hits and Matt Wieters walked four times.

The big news from yesterday - aside from the win - involved Adam Jones as he left the game early due to illness (he was replaced by Matt Angle in the 2nd inning). Jones says he's fine and should be ready to play tonight; however, he had to go to the hospital for tests.

Jones complained about feeling weak, plus complained about shortness of breath along with chest pains according to various reports. It sounds like he had a muscular issue, or nausea, but let's hope it's nothing more than that.

It's good to hear he's feeling fine, but it is sure scary news to hear -- especially for a twenty-something, professional athlete.

>>> Read More

Sunday, August 21, 2011

After Epic Fail on Saturday, More of the Same on Sunday...

The Orioles, this afternoon in California had yet another loss as the Los Angeles Angels defeated them, 7-1.

Just watched most of the replay on after a long day out in the Minneapolis area, and I’ll say this: things are ugly with the black and orange. I ended up turning off the game after the sixth inning and calling it a day.

At least it was a wonderful Sunday here and I'll see them live at Target Field on Monday night.

The losing goes on and on. They got swept by the Angels in three games and maybe their luck may change facing a Twins team that has fallen on hard times.

This season has turned into a horror story and after last night’s implosion by Kevin Gregg, Sunday’s game was not much better as Brian Matusz once again got hard on the mound. I don’t know what to say about the young man, but he has to figure it out on the mound. He’s a key part of the future – still – with the Baltimore Orioles.

Blake Davis was horrible at third today, but he was the least of the team’s problems on the afternoon.

Baltimore as a whole was horrible on the field and inept at the plate – in addition, on defense. They could not push runners across home plate and squandered opportunities all day to get on the scoreboard. Aside from Matt Wieters’ homer, nothing else went right.

Sadly, that has been the mantra of the team all year.

The Birds allowed the Angels’ starting pitcher Jerome Williams – who I had no idea was even in organized baseball – to earn a victory. Good for him, but pathetic for the Orioles.

>>> Read More

2011 the year of abject failure

There is no other way to put it, 2011 has been a colossal failure. Virtually everything the Orioles attempted has blown up in their faces leaving the fanbase with nothing but bitterness, and looming questions about the immediate future of this club.

The young pitching: Disaster.

Every pitcher that the Orioles have trotted out to the mound this year has either regressed, struggled, or become injured in some way. The 2011 Orioles picked up Jojo Reyes off of the waiver wire to start for them because at this point they just need fresh meat to throw into the grinder. Britton: injured; Arrieta: Bone spur; Bergesen: injured, Matusz: injured, ineffective, sent down; Tillman: maddeningly ineffective. Add all that up and you get the current disaster we see now. The Orioles seem to be stretching out Jim Johnson to throw him into the starting rotation. Just thinking about that concept proves how horrendous that sLinktarting pitching has been. If the Orioles themselves are willing to thin out an already gossamer thin bullpen corps to have a somewhat reliable arm in an experimental run for the last 25% of a death spiral of a season is proof enough that we are out of ideas and are running out the string.

>>> Read More

Saturday, August 20, 2011

More of the Same on the Left Coast; The Draft

It was another game and another loss for the Orioles on Friday night on the West Coast against the Los Angeles Angels. They lost their third game in a row.

Once again, the starting pitching for Baltimore – this time, Jo-Jo Reyes – was rudderless and gave the opposing team an early lead before they even got back into it.

At this point, the Orioles are now 47-75 and just playing out the stretch in the final month or so.

I don’t want to say the season is lost – oh well, it may be – but, fans were hoping for improvement.

That has not happened.

It’s been frustrating to watch the Orioles just relive the same scenario – bad patching, poor hitting and just a lackluster squad – over and over. It’s going on 14 years of losing and I wonder what the off-season will bring.

Really, some baseball experts expected the Orioles to finish above the Blue Jays; however, for one reason or another, Toronto always seems to field a competitive team, and at 64-61, they are a pleasant surprise.

Much like the Orioles, the Jays have a bright future – but, they are trending in the right direction.

The Orioles are not.

They have endured quite a bit of injuries (Brian Roberts, Jake Arrieta, Jason Berken, J.J. Hardy, and the list goes on and on…); however, the young arms didn’t really take a step forward this season, there’s been a lot of inconsistency (especially, with the pitching), and there’s really no impact player in the minors to plug in case of an emergency.

The Jays have Brett Lawrie, who was promoted from the minors in the past few weeks and has paid immediate dividends.

Who do the Orioles have?

There’s not a player of note right now.

>>> Read More

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Brian Matusz Returns

The long awaited return of Brian Matusz to the Orioles came Tuesday night. Many were intrigued at the prospect of what he could bring on the mound in his first major-league start since late June.

It’s been a long, frustrating season for him (and for us).

After his last minor league start, I was hopefully optimistic seeing what Matusz could do against the Oakland Athletics.

He was supposed to anchor a young rotation – along with Jeremy Guthrie – and help Baltimore perhaps inch close to the .500 mark; alas, everything as we all know went wrong for the young lefty and the team.

It would be safe to say that, while Matusz went over six innings, the results were mixed – at best. However, his outing was nothing short of mediocre as the Orioles lost to the Athletics, 8-4.

Matusz gave up six runs on the night and took the loss. While his stat line was not all that great, he looked good in particular spots and pitched three scoreless innings (from the fourth to the sixth and giving up four runs) before running into trouble. He left in the seven innings, allowing four runs, but got charged with two more as the bullpen allowed Oakland to add to their lead as they could not hold runners.

>>> Read More

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Guessing That Brian Roberts Will Not Be Back in 2011...

Over the past week, Brian Roberts has become a lightning rod for a group of fans. Obviously, he has been sidelined thanks to several concussions and recurring head issues.

Some people think Brian Roberts is stealing millions from the Baltimore Orioles for his lack of productivity for the past two years; furthermore, there’s a minority who have accused him of grand larceny despite being out due to injury.

Meanwhile, there’s a segment that feels sorry for him.

I’m definitely part of the latter. It sounds like his head and concussion issues are very serious and are impacting his quality of life.

It would be nice if Roberts could come back and play; however, after what we have seen with players in the NFL and NHL in the past several years, plus what doctors know now about concussions, the Orioles would be playing with fire if he suited up for them.

If you want to know the impact a concussion can have with an elite athlete involving an organization with great uncertainty, hop on Google and read up on the Pittsburgh Penguin’s Sidney Crosby.

>>> Read More

Monday, August 15, 2011

About Yesterday and 100 Losses?

The Orioles wrapped a lackluster homestand as they beat the Detroit Tigers, 8-5, on Sunday. Although the region was deluged with some crazy and thunderstorms before the game; however, by the time it started, it was absolutely beautiful outside.

Jo-Jo Reyes pitched fairly well, going six innings and only giving up a run. It was a welcome change to see an Oriole pitcher actually go fairly long into a game and walk out with a lead – especially after Guthrie got hammered in the sixth inning on Saturday.

Willie Eyre pitches two scoreless innings; however, things got real interesting in the ninth inning.

Closer Kevin Gregg – who came into the game in order to get some work done -- was nothing short of terrible. From what I’ve heard in the past, there are a lot of closers who don’t seem to pitch well without the added adrenaline in a pressurized situation.

Gregg took that theory and expanded upon it on Sunday. He seemingly could not get anyone out; therefore, after giving up several hits and walks, a game that was a blowout became one the Orioles could have lost if the Tigers got one big hit.

After his horrible outing, Gregg was booed off the mound and replaced with reliever Jim Johnson.

Johnson was able to get Brennan Boesch to fly out to left – only after an amazing, running catch by left fielder Nolan Reimold.

After losing consecutive one-run games to the Tigers on Friday and Saturday, the Oriole bats came through in a big way.

>>> Read More

Saturday, August 13, 2011

About Last Night and Thoughts on Brian Roberts

Last night, the Orioles lost to the Tigers 5-4 in the first contest of their three-game series.

Despite two home runs from J.J. Hardy, amazing defense by several players, and nice relief outing by Troy Patton – who kept his team in the game -- the Orioles blew several chances to perhaps pull out a win.

A perfect example of that came in the latter portion of the game as Adam Jones was robbed of a home run by Detroit center-fielder Austin Jackson. Obviously, you can’t blame Jones at all far that, but it was that type of a game.

However, there was some news involving Brian Roberts and some off-the-field stuff on Friday. He announced that he was cancelling his annual ‘Brian’s Baseball Bash’, typically held in the summer.

Honestly, I don’t think many people even known what’s going on with him and there’s not much that I have heard from the team, media or otherwise. I can imagine whatever is going on with him isn’t good at all.

I’ll say this; several season ticket holders who I know that have attended the event multiple times were bummed, but understood Robert’s situation. However, some of the sentiment I’ve read online about the cancellation were far from charitable, and perhaps a bit over the top.

You can say what you want about him as a player, his injury history, the whole steroid thing, or whatever; however, I don’t think that Roberts wanted to hide from the world and not face the fans and media in cancelling the event.

>>> Read More

Friday, August 12, 2011

James Baker: Losing got ya down?

I know that is true for me, so today I offer a soothing balm to remedy the sting of another loss. Lets all take a break from the gloom and doom, hop in the TARDISTARDIS and travel back to this day in that wild and wonderful year 1997.

Good morning everyone on the information super highway! I fired up my brand new 300mHz Pentium II today to bring you all digitized good news. Beginning tonight the OriolesOrioles will host Oakland in a quick two-game series after taking three of four from the A's in Oakland just last week. The Orioles have done very well against the A's this year winning seven of the nine meetings so far.

Tonight Scott Erickson will go be looking for his 14th win against a slightly struggling Carlos Reyes for the A's.

It is good to be an Orioles fan right now, kids. Camden Yards is celebrating her fifth birthday in style. The Orioles have not trailed in their division at any point so far this season and with their consistent play and 5.5-game lead over the Yankees, it does not appear that is likely to change.

Read the rest of this trip down memory lane at

>>> Read More

Another Loss and Yet More Inconsistency...

One has to wonder, will pitcher Chris Tillman ever figure things out as a pitcher at the major league level? After a decent start last week, Tillman once again found a way to struggle as the White Sox beat the Orioles, 6-3.

Tillman gave up six earned runs in only 2 2/3 innings; in the opening frame, he gave up four runs and seemingly was throwing batting practice. He was throwing strikes … um, to the middle of the plate and was not locating his pitches at all.

His reward for yet another inconsistent outing: a trip back to Norfolk. Again.

Tillman is still relatively young and I certainly don’t think he should be jettisoned out of the organization.

Although Tillman has the look of the ideal, prototypical pitcher – tall, lean and athletic looking – he doesn’t throw all that hard and maybe tops out at 91-92 at best now.

However, if a pitcher can’t throw hard, they have to locate their pitches and ‘pitch’ to contact. Tillman has the second part down, not so much with the first.

It’s just frustrating to watch him. Tillman looks like he should be half-decent, but why can’t he put it all together?

Once again, he'll have to figure out in Triple-A. Again.

That being said, I would imagine Brian Matusz would come back up this week as a spot is now open in the rotation.

>>> Read More

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

I'm back

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.

>>> Read More

Monday, August 8, 2011

Britton Headed to DL

Struggling southpaw/rookie Zach Britton has been placed on the 15 day disabled list with a left shoulder pain. This is yet another Oriole pitcher lost out of the rotation. That list of guys includes Brian Matusz, Jake Arrieta, and now Britton. The news that he was headed to the DL came after yet another tough loss against the Kansas City Royals. In that game, he gave up 6 runs and 12 hits in only 5.1 innings. Zach was making only his second start since coming back from his demotion to Double-A Bowie.

Britton started the season as a solid rookie of the year candidate putting up an absurd 5-2 record with a 2.93 ERA. This shoulder pain might have been the cause of his 1-6 record and 7.78 ERA since the start of June. This move was announced just minutes before the game last night. To fill Britton's role on the club, Cesar Izturis was activated from the 60-day DL.

>>> Read More

About Yesterday, Reynolds and Bell...

The Orioles lost on Sunday as they were defeated by pitcher Ricky Romero and the Toronto Blue Jays, 7-2.

Once again, Romero has his way with the Birds. In the end, basically Sunday's game was over during thefourth inning.

Alfredo Simon – perhaps the best Oriole starting pitcher in the last few weeks – was off as he went a little over five innings. He gave up six runs – four earned.

There was much not offense in the game, but when Mark Reynolds came to the plate … it was a different story.

Most of us know that Reynolds is your prototypical all-or-nothing guy, one who strikes out a ton, is a free swinger and either hits the ball a long way or sits on the bench.

However, on Sunday, he put on a power display that would have made even the most skeptical fan change their mind.

Well, at least for a day.

He hit two solo home runs, but his second of the afternoon (and his 26th of the year) was the one that got everyone’s attention.

The homer came in the seventh of Ricky Romero, who simply seemed to be cruising throughout the game.

You could tell off the sound of the bat that Reynolds’ swat was going to send the ball a long way; however, his homer – estimated at 450 feet – did not just go far, it ended up in the mezzanine (second deck) near the all-you-can-eat section in left field.

I can not recall any batter (and I attend a lot of games) even reaching that area. From what I read later on during the evening on Sunday, it was only the second homer to hit thLinkat area according to the Baltimore Sun (Red Hudler of the Angels did it … way back in 1995).

In an otherwise ho-hum game for the Orioles, seeing Reynolds kill the ball was cool to see. Ok, so … the Orioles still lost.

Speaking of Reynolds, he seems to be doing just fine at first base. He is obviously there because Chris Davis is hurt; however, after his play at third for the first four months of the season, he might as well stay at third. I’m just saying.

>>> Read More

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Another Game, Another Loss

It was another game for the Orioles and yet another loss.

With J.J. Hardy and Chris Davis out due to injuries – the Orioles were already at a huge disavanatge.

The newest Bird, Tommy Hunter could not stop the losing skid, so the Baltimore Orioles lost to the Toronto Blue Jays, 5-4, last night. He got behind some of the Toronto batters, and at times got hit hard.

Hunter gave up four runs in four innings as Baltimore lost their 66th game of the 2011 season. Adam Jones hit his 19th homer – a shot that went over 400 feet – however, the Orioles had umpteen chances to score throughout the game, but could not capitalize. Despite battling, they were only 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position.

The Orioles had a golden chance in the ninth, as they scored once (off a Nick Markakis double), but could not muster any more offense.

If there was an unsung hero from last night, it would have to be lefty Troy Patton. After Hunter left the game with Baltimore trailing, 4-2, after the fifth inning, he threw three innings, giving up a run and essentially keeping the team in thick of things on Friday night.

>>> Read More

Friday, August 5, 2011

In Bad Shape...

At the beginning of the year, we all thought if the young pitchers and Jeremy Guthrie take a step forward, the Orioles would be close to a .500 team.

We are now in the first week of August and it seems that not much has changed from the past decade plus on the mound. Maybe last year's nice finish was the exception.

Right now, the franchise looks to be in pretty bad shape. I'm not even sure at this point that the Orioles will even match their win total from last year.

At the moment, the starting rotation is plagued with a ton of inconsistency, poor outings and pitchers who just can’t seem to get out of key innings without some issue. This week, the Kansas City Royals took three out of four games from the Orioles, and you've got to wonder how much worse things will get.

After watching another Oriole loss last night with Zach Britton on the mound (who was followed by an ineffective Jim Johnson), you’ve got to ponder what in the world is going on with the pitching? If there’s any solace from last night’s game, at least Britton stuck around for a bit despite giving up three runs in the first inning.

I’m not sure if the league has caught with Britton, his sinker just isn't effective or what; however, he is not the same pitcher we saw during the first eight weeks of the season. He just looks awful, and now he’s not fooling batters anymore.

Maybe he’s tired or something has changed.

Not to rail so much on him, but it seems that every Oriole pitcher has issues these days.

>>> Read More

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