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September 1, 2011

Orioles claim Strop (the player to be named from Texas)

The Orioles officially announced that they had claimed right-handed reliever Pedro Strop off waivers from the Texas Rangers and he will join the club in Tampa.

Strop was the player to be named later in Wednesday's deal that sent Michael Gonzalez to the Rangers.

Basically, the Orioles received cash from the Rangers, which they used to make the claim to get Strop.

It's one of those baseball procedural things, but the bottom line is that Strop is an Oriole and the Gonzalez trade is completed.

Strop, 26, was 0-1 with a 3.72 ERA in 11 games with the Rangers in 2011.

Posted by Dan Connolly at 2:06 PM | | Comments (15)
        

Comments

How much money did the O's save by not having to pay Gonzo for a month?

It is truly amazing how bad things have gotten. Texas gets two of our top 3 bullpen pitchers and we get 3 flawed players in return. Strangely, all are happy to be here because they would not play much if at all for the Rangers. Now we are stuck watching 30 days of truly horrible pitching and Texas has fortified their bullpen for a playoff run. Is it any wonder the O's are where they are?

Andy McPhail has done a major disservice to the O's and the fans of Baltimore. Some want to blame on Peter Angelos but this is truly McPhail's mess. Other teams have spent far less than the $85M or so we have spent on salaries, and have gotten far more wins in return. We have taken several steps backward in the win column and quality of play over the last four years. It all hinges on pitching and we have failed miserably in that area. Please AM announcement that you are leaving so that we can move on to the next rebuilding effort. And when selecting the next GM, please make sure they have a real plan to build the O’s into a franchise that can compete and win in the AL East. Catchy slogans a like “Grow the arm and buy the bats” just won’t cut it. The state of Baltimore Baseball is as low as it has been in very long time.

Great piece by Kevin Cowherd today. Amen Kevin! You are now the official crash dummy columnist for the Baltimore Sun. The "What they are saying about the Orioles" piece also pretty much sums up the state of the organization..... Pathetic. Mother Theresa would have cursed this team if she had paid 25 bucks to watch last night's game. It's so bad that the chamber of commerce wants Baltimore taken back OFF the road jerseys. Big crowd today. The ballpark emptied out in 5 minutes


The team is in so much better shape that it was 4 years ago. So many good trades. The spring training complex. The miner leagues are in much better shape. Bringing Showalter in...The next GM will probably have the good fortune of having the pitching all come together for him. I for one am so happy that Macphail got this organization back to being proffessional. The last thing to come will be the wins and losses. Would have happened this year if the young pitching hadn't completely fallen apart.
Better days ahead.
Thanks Andy and I hope you stay on as President for a couple years to see this thing through.

See a physician Smitty. You cannot spin Andy's term with hopefuls about the future. He had nothing to do with the spring training complex. I hope you are right and the team's pitching comes through, however there are missing pieces at 1st/3rd depending on where you want Reynolds. Left field is wide open and second base is extremely questionable.

Its almost as if we are helping Texas get stronger so that they'll win against NYY. I don't necessarily hate that I idea, but when do we get paid back for all of these good deeds for Texas? I'm surprised that we didn't give them Jim Johnson too. We know that this is not McPhail. No, McPhail only has a relationship with one team....ChiCubs. No Showalter is behind these moves.

Hey smitty.......did you really say all that stuff? What are you on anyway? This organization is far far far worse off than they've every been. They're a complete train wreck. You were joking, right?

Couldn't agree with you more Smitty. Andy has done a great job, and has finally turned the organization in the right direction. Its not to much longer till the wins and losses will start demonstrating the hard work that Andy and his staff have accomplished over the last few years.

That being said......His other trades have been pretty good for the most part. This trade involving Gonzalez is a complete mystery to me. Surely we could have gotten a better deal for a closer/late inning hard throwing lefty than that.

This team has been built, and is set up to be a sub-.500 team for at least the next 5 years. AT LEAST.

I think smitty's Grandfather was a lookout at Pearl Harbor. "OH don't worry, they must be OUR planes."

Well, his numbers look pretty good. Hope he can live up to them.

Otherwise, it will just be another big joke about having Pedro "Jock" Strop pitching for the O's.

Smitty is essentially right. An objective review of the Orioles system shows Bowie Baysox fighting for a play off slot, Frederick is leading the Carolina League, GCL Orioles are leading their division, Dominican Summer League Orioles are leading their division.
These four teams clearly show the Orioles farm system is rebuilding.

MacPhail gets a D-plus from me.

For the Orioles, he gets an F. They were 291-357 (.449) the four years prior to his arrival. They are 252-368 (.406) on his watch.

For AAA, he gets an F. Ottawa (2004-06) and Norfolk (2007) were 278-296 (.484). Norfolk under his watch are 256-311 (.451). Even more damning is the Tides are currently at their worst at 54-85 (.388).

For the rest of the farm system, he gets a C-minus. His major contributions have been the signing of top prospects. Still, Bowie was at its best in 2008, a team that was made up of players prior to his arrival. They have some good players and remain somewhat above .500. Overall, the Orioles are short on position players but may have pitchers in the pipeline with promise.

Drafting and development, MacPhail gets a D. In many cases, it is hard to separate a player's early downfall to being someone who should have been avoided or someone who was mishandled. A few picks have been head-scratchers. Some were players who fell to them because of perceived problems with getting them signed. Time will tell if this grade should be upgraded but while the percentages of signed players who were drafted may be questioned, the top dogs were signed.

Scouting, he gets D-minus. This is a category that dovetails into other categories -- such as which players to keep, which players to trade, which players to draft, and so on. Clearly, he gets passing marks on some decisions with regards to scouting, and I have ignored the players involved in trades and free agency because they will be their own categories. But whatever details you can find to pat MacPhail on the back about, get quickly nullified by the failure of international scouting. Only Koji is a claim to the positive, and the Orioles have announced they will even do less in the Latin countries.

Trading, MacPhail gets a B-minus. That may be generous, too, because I have a very dim view about an important aspect. The Bedard gets an A-plus. For the surly, gifted, injury-prone left-hander, the O's got Jones and a fair amount of mileage out of Sherrill. The first Tejada trade gets a C-plus solely on the results from Scott. The Hardy trade is an A-minus. This could improve if Hardy becomes durable. This could drop if not, but since the O's gave up little, this grade is likely never to drop below a C-plus. Opinions vary but I am currently giving the Reynolds trade a C-minus. As fun as it is to see Reynolds bludgeon the ball when he makes contact, he is completely undependable in the clutch and he has developed a problem with throwing the ball. And while Hernandez is a far less exciting player being a reliever, the Orioles sorely lack good relief which is what many fans saw in him when he was still here. The Orioles have suffered way more losses via bullpen collapse than wins via Reynolds' solo shots.

The trading grade gets nicked in one other very important aspect -- the trades that didn't happen. Roberts, a fan favorite, should have been traded while he had major value. It might not have turned out as nicely as the Bedard trade but genuine vale could have been returned. The same is true with Markakis. I like Markakis -- a lot -- but the truth is I like winning more, and his value has gone down to the point we are now stuck with him. Pie should have been traded when he was tearing things up. Teams had interest in him when we got him, and he had some major league flashes of brilliance. Now, no one will even claim him off of waivers.

Free agency, MacPhail gets an F. Hard to tell which is worse -- the players we didn't even try to sign or the scraps we went dumpster diving after. It's like choosing between death by hanging or death by firing squad.

Intangibles, MacPhail gets a C. The Orioles finally since the move from St. Louis (or so it seems) have a spring training facility that isn't all over Florida, away from all of the other Grapefruit teams, and/or a dump. And the Orioles have hired a professional manager in Showalter. (Please, not another refrain that he wasn't MacPhails' first choice.) Those A's are equally offset by the total failure of bringing an infrastructure to the Orioles front office that would be on par when Hoffberger owned the team.

And that last statement carries the pink elephant everyone know is in the room but no one wants to speak of it. How much of what MacPhail did and didn't do were the results of The Grand Steward of the team, Peter the Grate. We all know how imposing he was with Gillick and Wren. It seemed to die down with Thrift, Beattie, Flanagan and Duquette. But, that may have been more the results of being less public than genuine reality.

While blame is unfairly being tossed Angelos's way for Flanagan's decision, there seems to be plenty of evidence plenty of blame still goes to the Penthouse Suite of the Warehouse when it comes to baseball operations during Flanagan's time there. That being said, MacPhail may be getting someone else's grades although that someone else gets an F as an owner.

Let's trade Angelos for Frank McCourt.

And let's all get excited: it looks like Reynolds may reach 200 strikeouts again after all. For a while there I was afraid his numbers might sink a bit, but he's been putting on an absolute clinic of swinging and missing lately. The guy's a true prodigy.

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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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