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July 6, 2010

Atkins era officially over

The Orioles announced today that first baseman Garrett Atkins cleared waivers and was given his unconditional release.

He is free to sign with another team, and he said previously that he would consider a minor league deal. But not with the Orioles.

Atkins had one homer and nine RBIs in 140 at-bats with the Orioles this season. He was signed in the offseason to a one-year $4.5 million deal.

The Orioles must pay the remainder of that, although if he plays in the majors with another club this year, that team would be responsible to pay him a prorated portion of the $400,000 minimum salary.

Posted by Dan Connolly at 7:13 PM | | Comments (36)


what an @$$, He might not have a real contract but for the O's and he won't sign a minor league here but will elsewhere. Like he has a better shot there??!!

I think you misspelled a word in the title of this one, Dan. Shouldn't it be: "Atkins Error Officially Over"?

Well maybe Mr. Angelo's can use it as a tax write off and reduce the same day ticket prices next year?

I believe that Garrett Atkins was originally signed to replace Melvin Mora. Then, they signed Miguel Tejada. They jumped to gun - Atkins would have made sense at third but couldn't contribute to the team in any other way. I can't believe they signed him for so much - yet another stupid free agent move by the Orioles.

cheap help-all the way around

The Atkins era is over. And how do the O's commemorate it? By spoiling a great start by Arrieta, by converting 17 hits (including a double, triple and home-run) and 6 walks into only 5 runs, and by blowing a 2-run lead in the 9th and then giving up a walk-off home run in the 11th. The King is dead, long live the Jokers!

Garrett is a great player signed (sorry) to a crappy team. Don't slam his season this year he didn't have much of a chance. Look at his stats with the rockies. Great guy, great player

The least he could have done after all the money he took for doing nothing is go to Norfolk to help fill their roster. Good riddance to someone that obviously lacks character.

The Atkins era is over? I did not know it even started!

Balto Jim put it well -

The Atkins ERROR is officially over

Unfreakinbelievable this guy was signed for 4.5 mil

1 HR 9 RBIs ... ??? 4.5 MIL ???

My daughter playing HS Softball could have done more than Atkins, easy

He's from UCLA so he gets a free pass from me.

Also Veggie dogs suck!

Why doesn't McPhail have to answer for this signing. Why does he get off the hook. Every real fan knew that this was one of the dumbest signings in the team's history. Then, he was signed for 4.5 mil instead of 1 million on top of that.

I hope that was a joke about your daughter...

So he stunk, his career is likely over now. I just love how unsupportive Baltimore fans are, it makes me sick. Does everyone still feel like we should release Adam Jones?

Well, there went $4.5 million. It's hard to believe Atkins had any other offers this spring. He may be a great guy, but as a player he's past it..

Too bad MacPhail didn't apply the money he used to "buy this bat" toward a real bat. Then we probably would not be as bad as we are. When is "plan" going to start paying dividends.

MacPhail better start getting his act together! Oh that's right, Angelos likes him. Just like Angelos likes Crowley and Flanagan and Dempsey.

Why would he want to play in the minors for the O's? Obviously, he has no chance to make it back to the bigs. The O's are focused on developing their young talent. At least with some other team he'd have a chance to get called up in case of injury.

i like how he's being choosy about his comeback .... that kind of confidence is sure to get garrett back in the game ...

I thought the Sammy Sosa signing was the low water mark during the last decade. I was wrong.

Gone and soon forgotten.

In this economy, what a waste....$5 mil (they have to pay him another $500,000)
flushed down the toilet....Another great job done by the organization....I would like to have his agent represent me!!

"Garrett is a great player signed (sorry) to a crappy team. Don't slam his season this year he didn't have much of a chance. Look at his stats with the rockies. Great guy, great player"

rockiesfan2lo, how does this even begin to make sense? He was given every chance to do well - he was in the lineup 44 times, 152 plate appearances, day after day, long after it became apparent he's couldn't hit his way out of a wet paper bag with a machete. How did he "not have a chance"?

And how is he a great player? He hit below .220, and didn't have a single HR as a 1B this year.

And why would I look at his stats with the Rockies? It's 2010, and while on the Orioles, he didn't hit, just like he couldn't hit in 2009.

He may be a great guy and a great teammate, but HE CAN'T HIT. Therefore, he was of absolutely no use to this team.

Good riddance, Garrett Atkins, and I'm only sorry you didn't get released before Opening Day.

Jason -

Are fans supposed to be supportive of a GM who signed a non-tendered player coming off a career worst season for four and half million dollars?

Are fans supposed to be supportive of a supposed power hitter with a slugging percentage south of .300?

Why should fans support this team when the owner hasn't given them a reason to do so in a dozen years?

Why should fans support this team when there's no accountability in the entire organization?

By the way, no one was calling for Adam Jones to be released. People were calling for him to be sent to the minors because he was hitting .246 with 50 strikeouts and eight walks through 57 games. Is it unreasonable to hope that a kid would work on his plate discipline after a humbling demotion?

The Angels need a 1st baseman. Kendry Morales is gone for the season and they could pretty much have Garrett Atkins to replace him.

Way to go McFail.continued mellan


A joke about my daughter?? No, not really ... she hit .433 this year 9 HR & 38 RBI

Plays 1B, 3B & OF - 5'-11" w/ great speed

Grew up playing bball, she can hit a baseball as well as a softball

"Atkins era officially over"

No, it's not; Andy Waffles is still here.

"Atkins era officially over"

NO, it's not. Next year he'll be Comeback Player of the Year in the Mexican League after visiting a Canadian doctor.

"Garrett is a great player signed (sorry) to a crappy team. Look at his stats with the rockies. Great guy, great player"

You HAVE to be joking, or a complete moron.

Atkins hasn't had a good year for a corner infielder since 2007, and his best year was FIVE SEASONS AGO.


Since then, he's been below average and trending towards miserable for three consecutive seasons. Heck, before his miserable 2009 season in Colorado, he was a SUBPAR third baseman in 2008.

Check that...he was a SUBPAR National League third baseman.

Check that too...he was a SUBPAR, National League third baseman, playing in Colorado where everyone's stats are artificially inflated.

Seriously, playing in a much weaker league, in a place where offense is inflated, he STILL couldn't be more than a below-average third baseman, and that was two season ago.

Yet this retread is a "great player"? The thin air of Colorado has wilted the two synapsing brain cells you had left.

Ferg -

Your comments about Atkins' 2008 season made me dig deeper. Honestly, I didn't think 21 homers and 99 rbi were that bad.

But out of 18 third basemen with 500+ plate appearances in '08, here are Atkins' ranks:

BB%: 16th
K%: 14th
Avg: 5th
OBP: 13th
SLG: 13th

Here's where it starts to get really ugly:

ISO (Isolated Power): 15th, ahead of Jack Hannahan, Marco Scutaro and Chone Figgins.

WPA (Win Probability Added): 18th

HR/FB: 14th, ahead of the three weaklings and Alex Gordon.


I mean, let's keep it real. Our record is 25-58, and we're not even at halftime. The Adkins situation was a horrible move but, even if he had numbers like Wigginton, our record would still be 25-58. My problem is, when is Adkins going to own up to the fact that he stunk...

Atkins is not as bad a deal for the Orioles as Sosa, or even Albert Bell, but it is very close.
Is there any talk of when Angelos sells the team, or croaks, that the Orioles will move to Charlotte or Norfolk? Keep on hating everyone, and not showing up.

One down and it took too long.

Now the spotlight will be on our closer -in-waiting Mike Gonzales. Once he finishes his stints in the minors, we have the pleasure of seeing his mid to high 80s mph fastball with very little movement being tossed up in real games.

We all want him to have success, but, if you have high expectations, just forget it.

We should force Andy MacPhail to tattoo the names of these guys on his forehead, so we can never forget he wasted millions on these guys.

Name a successful team these days without a decent rbi-hitting 1st baseman and a decent closer.

What do you expect when you go free agent bargain-basement hunting? Next time there's a Texiera, Cliff Lee, Sabathia, or Josh Beckett available, you do whatever you have to do to get them.

This is 100% MacPhails mistake and fault...this was a bad sign from the get-go
He has no clue....and is in my mind is theee worst GM in baseball.
All his trades and moves have NO purpose....The O's play with no heart ...MacPhail should have been sent packing with Trembley
I bet Atkins signs with a real baseball organization and helps them out.
I don't blame him not wanting to go play in Norfolk, which by the way is thee worst park for a hitter to hit in.
The O's make me sick!!!!!!!!!

We really needed an experienced one-year 3B. Nothing flashy, nothing expensive, just a solid dependable mid-level bat and glove who could also help stabilize a young and shifting clubhouse. So we did the right thing and bought one. Then we bought another. OOPS! This is not like accidentally buying two loaves of bread, and you just eat more sandwiches for a week. This is like accidentally buying two toasters, and you use one and let the other one take up space on the counter, or maybe see if it will work as a blender, before you finally toss it or donate it to Goodwill.

I just read that The Yankees of all teams, are going to sign Garrett Atkins, and I can't stop laughing....HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
The O's will pay approx $4.1 Million of his contract this year, while he helps the Yankees to another championship season.


Hey let's demote our Minor League Farm Director with 1 week left of spring training......UUUUGGGHHHHHH !!!

Please give me back my O's Baseball this century!!!

FIRE MACPHAIL NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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About the bloggers
A Baltimore native, Dan Connolly has been covering sports for 14 years, and baseball and the Orioles for 10 seasons, including the past six with The Sun. His first year covering baseball on a daily basis was Cal Ripken Jr.'s final season as a player. It's believed that is just a coincidence.

Steve Gould is an assistant sports editor for The Sun, overseeing Orioles coverage. The Columbia native joined The Sun as a sports copy editor in 2006 after graduating from the University of Maryland.

Peter Schmuck has been covering baseball for a lot longer than Steve Gould has been on this earth. He is now a general sports columnist, but has been a beat writer covering three major league teams (the Dodgers, Angels and Orioles) and also spent a decade as the Sun's national baseball writer. If you want more of his insight on the Orioles and other sports issues, check out his personal blog -- The Schmuck Stops Here.

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