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January 9, 2009

Orioles roster taking shape

The signing of Chris Gomez to a minor league contract brings the Orioles' 25-man roster more into focus. Club sources have indicated that the team's lack of top-end pitching depth will likely force manager Dave Trembley to open the season with a 13-man pitching staff, which reduces his position options.

If that's how it plays out, and a lot can happen between now and early April, it would leave room for only three extra players -- probably newly acquired Ryan Freel, Gomez and whoever ends up being the No. 2 catcher. Since every starting position appears set except catcher and either first base or designated hitter, that would leave extra outfielder Lou Montanez and journeyman Oscar Salazar on the bubble -- or out of the major league picture if the O's end up signing a right-handed-hitting first baseman.

When the Orioles signed utilityman Donnie Murphy in November, he figured to make the club, but now he could be the odd man out with Gomez in the mix. Gomez's range at shortstop might be questionable at this point in his career, but he's a versatile player who will make a contribution at the plate. He's also a great clubhouse guy who was well-liked by the organization during his first go-round in Baltimore.

Debunking myself: Though I've speculated about the possible availability of Cleveland's Ryan Garko, a high-ranking industry source said this week that the Indians and Orioles have had absolutely no discussions about him.

Posted by Peter Schmuck at 4:23 PM | | Comments (84)
Categories: Just baseball
        

Comments

any idea who the O's are asking for in addition to Gavin Floyd from the WSox for Roberts?

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Pete's reply: I've answered this several times. There are, according to Ken Williams and O's officials, no talks going on about Roberts and Floyd.

Great to see Gomez back. I never understood why they let him go in the first place. How many guys are better than average hitters and can field all infield positions pretty well?

I'd like to see them give Salazar a chance at first base. He can hit and as a third baseman can obviously field the position adequately. The guy has paid his dues; give him a chance.

Probably won't happen, though.

Well that is one move I am happy they made. Not much impact but it is good. Now we have a new problem. If the Orioles carry 13 pitchers, that means you have only four players that can fill Utility, backup catcher and DH roles. So if you have Freel, Gomez and whoever is the back up catcher that leaves just the DH spot. So if anyone was hoping to see Montanez make the team it may not happen. I believe the Orioles could start the season with a 4 man rotation with the early off days and a 12 person pitching staff, but that would cost the Orioles a move. If the Orioles do not sign a first baseman this could be good for Montanez and Huff. I am sure everyone is interested in seeing what is next.

Roster is looking great, when do playoff tickets go on sale?

"y" is for "Why Not2"?

Pete,

To my knowledge, the Orioles own the rights to Quiroz, Moeller, Santos and Donachie(all assigned to minors). Do the own the rights to any other catcher who can help out at the major league level until Weiters is ready to step to help the parent ball club.

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Pete's reply: I believe it will be Zaun and Moeller.

Pete,

If you think Montanez and Salazar are on the bubble? Where does that leave someone like Nolan Reimold? I have a feeling he will be impressive in Spring Training. I think we'll see Reimold and Weiters on the team. Welcome back Gomez but when will the Orioles actually try to make some real Hot Stove news. They aren't selling any tickets with these off season moves.

Peter-

Did they talk to Indians about anyone else besides Garko?

Plenty of good young 1B/3B/DH propsects in that system.....

The Orioles' signings of Mark Hendrickson and Chris Gomez remind me of Max Bialystock's "Springtime for Hitler" in "The Producers." The major difference is that it's beginning to look like the 2009 Orioles will be a failure both with fans like me and in the A.L. East standings.

Hey Pete,

What are your thoughts on the rotation now that Redding is going to sign with the Mets? The O's are losing all of their cheap options at pitching as they continue to "fill out" the roster. Repeat after me Macphail...pitching, pitching, pitching....


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Pete's reply: The thing I find funny is that people were viewing the pursuit of Redding as another sign of how bad the O's are screwing up the offseason, then he gets signed by a contender.

THIS is the team they are fielding in the Major Leagues...in the American League East no less?

Thanks. I'm glad the roster is set but I think I'll pass.

Pete,

I know the headline must be a joke. If you consider January 9th with no starting catcher, no first baseman and one bona fide major league starting pitcher as the roster "taking shape", I think the kool aid is a little strong. I know we're rebuilding and need to be patient, but come on. Hope is the only thing we're holding on to right now and banking on 3 21 year old minor league starting pitching prospects is dicey at best.

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Pete's reply: Since when is the term "taking shape" a perjorative? I'm just saying how it's going to be constructed. I'm not making any value judgement, so this isn't a Kool-Aid issue.

I've said all along mcPhail isn't rebuilding,he's cost cutting and it's a big difference. If he was rebuilding he would go after players like Garko but other teams don't even want to deal with the o's because they want too much back for too little and drag thier feet.The O's have a ton of young pitching to deal from without touching the top 5 or 6. This is the kind of decisions gm's are paid to make.

What happened to Montanez? He was like the best player down at Bowie last year. You can't tell me Luke Scott has more upside than him.

Since the Orioles decided not to care about being competetive this year -- for that matter any year but, especially this year, I have decided to match their not caring with a not caring of my own. I will also raise their not caring with a huge yawn and one of those thought bubbles that you see in Peanuts comics with just the scribble in it. They have become a disgrace to this city. After wanting Baltimore on the jerseys for so long it sickens me that now it's on there and I wish it wasnt. Maybe people would be fooled and think the team is from Cleveland or something.
This roster isnt exactly a who's who it's a who cares. Actually, it is a who's who. The fans on opening day will be saying who's that, who's that as the names are introduced. Oh well, 30,000 of them will be Yankees fans anyway infecting our once beloved ballpark.
At least we have the Ravens.

For those of you who think we must have a right-handed-hitting first-baseman, enter Gomez.
For those of you who keep insisting we don't have a first-baseman, enter Huff.
For those of you who insist we don't have a DH, enter Scott.
For those of you who think Montanez may be on the bubble, enter left field.
I also agree that Reimold may hit his way into the mix during ST. To me, that would make Freel the odd man out because Gomez will be there no matter what.

It's going to be a long, long season.

Gomez coming back is good. Now, we have two bench utility men that above avg fielders.

What about the idea of moving Mora to first or Scott Moore at first?

Until the gaping holes at the top of the rotation are filled and a final decision has been made at Catcher you can't call this close to done yet.

Gomez nice guy but yet another stopgap type player. Who honestly cares about Gomez as the O's wallow in last before the season has even begun.

It taking shape alright, the shape of a turd.

My point was the headline was giving too much credit to the offseason moves. No matter, just conjecture here...

Pete, it's funny that now that Redding might be going to the Mets, we want him, but before, he was another bum that the O's could get cheap. There is a lot that this team has done wrong, but I haven't seen one move this offseason that has been bad, yet Andy is ridiculed constantly. Honestly, I DON'T think people will ever believe that Tex DIDN'T want to play here and that the O's DIDN'T insult Markakis with a 60 mil offer.

Pete, maybe you can answer this or not, but why do people feel that Oscar and Lou, deserve to be on this team? What have they done to get an automatic roster spot? I think they deserve a shot to impress the brass, but fans view these guys like they are owed something. I don't get it, so I was hoping maybe you do?


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Pete's reply: I believe they deserve a chance to make the team, but I don't think baseball has a dues-paying system. If either is the best guy for the job, he'll get it.

The O's tried hard to get Texieria because he was a local guy and a big time player. Unfortunately, the Orioles never got a shot at drafting him because he was already selected when their turn came around. How did the Orioles pass on Brett Cecil in 2007? He was available and is a local kid from U of Maryland. I read that he is a top prospect and a lefthanded pitcher. Think we could use him???


13 pitchers? Quantity doesn't make up for quality. 12 is plenty.
What a joke Angelos has turned this organization into. No minor league solution after 10 yrs, no winning team, etc. And to think many people thought local ownership was a good thing.

Hey Pete,. according to Ken Rosenthal, the O's are exploring signing Jim Edmonds to play first base...any truth to this?

If it is, it might be cool, as Edmonds is an awesome ballplayer, and one of my favorite major leaguers going back to my childhood...if not, well there have been greater tragedies.

In terms of Gomez, I don't have any problem with it, as I was upset when he left the team a couple years ago, so it's nice to have ol' "fresh hands" back in the organization. He is a good guy and a very valuable ballplayer to any team. If nothing else, he creates more competition in spring training, and I feel ,like that competition brings out the best in young players.

(On a side note, I couldn't be more excited for Ryan Freel, for whatever it's worth...Baltimore has been waiting for a real dirt-dog and scrapper for a long time..someone who plays with real intensity, like B-Rob kicked up a notch, haha)

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Pete's reply: I like Edmonds a little, but the O's were looking for a right-handed hitting guy, so I would be surprised to see him in the mix.

Quit pickin' on Pete. He only said that the O's roster is taking shape. He never iterated what kind of shape.
A molten, steaming, pile of dog doo has a shape. Don't it?

Pay no attention to the Kool-Aid stained lips....Peter Schmuck is a scholar and a gentleman.

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Pete's reply: Thank you for that impassioned defense.

Spelling "pejorative", The pejorative comment deepened the dislike between the Orioles and their fans.

Your in Balmore hon, the city that reads, hates Yankees and LOVES THE RAVENS.

GO BALMORE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Peter why are the Orioles not trying to sign John Garland, Ben Sheets, Derek Lowe these are solid pitchers that are inning eaters exactly what we need. The money they did not spend on Burnett, I would give it to any of these three.......who are definite upgrades over anyone on our staff including the ace of our staff.......

Peter why are the Orioles not trying to sign John Garland, Ben Sheets, Derek Lowe these are solid pitchers that are inning eaters exactly what we need. The money they did not spend on Burnett, I would give it to any of these three.......who are definite upgrades over anyone on our staff including the ace of our staff.......

Well I hope Wieters, Roberts and Jones provide some excitement because the rest of the roster is absolutely boring!

Gomez is a great signing.

Classy guy who would still be my first choice for primary utility even if we were going to contend.

This just makes me sick,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,I think the O's should play in Frederick this year and lease out OPACY to avoid way too much humiliation.................This year will be great for Yankee and Bosox fans , they will have plenty of tickets at their disposal , Tex will be cheered more at OPACY than Yankee stadium,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,Peter the Great must be proud..............

Carrying 13 pitchers is insane. Eleven is plenty. They need a couple of guys out of the pen who can pitch two or three innings.

Trying to win with a three-man bench is tough.

"the O's are exploring signing Jim Edmonds to play first base"......"one of my favorite major leaguers going back to my childhood"
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When you use going back to my childhood in a statement about who a team may be looking to sign it doesn't make you feel good about the guy helping the team out! I'm just hoping you are like 14 and you are reffering to Edmonds as a guy that has been your favorite since you were like 10 because I'm not very old and if the Os sign a guy that has been one of my favorites since childhood that would be scary.....but maybe we could get Lenny Dykstra and Wally Joyner on board!

So sad.... as a die hard Oriole fan who has lived far away for the last 20 years and is looking at the forest and not the trees.... this is really bad....why don't the Orioles pass a collection plate for the next two years and send out the Norfolk team... then they can start to think about fielding a team.

It is insulting for the fans to just sit back, pay full value for tickets, and watch a team of cast offs, minor leaguers, and the like. There is absolutely no attempt to put any kind of competitive team on the field this year so why are they charging fully inflated prices for seats?

I have such little interest in watching this team of scaps that I will be cancelling my Directv MLB package. See you in a couple of years.

News, the good pitcher from japan kawakami looks to be signing with the Braves. What a surprise. This move for gomez is another joke. This team is not relavant. I'd start saying goodbye's to B-Rob, don't need 2 utilty infielders. Pete, PLEASE EXPLAIN WHY WE DON'T THROW MORE OF THE KIDS IN, INSTEAD OF THESE NEVER WERE PLAYERS, LIKE WE SIGNED THIS OFFSEASON??????????????


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Pete's reply: Because you don't use decent prospects as bench and utility players if you want them to develop. Did you notice the Dodgers -- a pretty good team -- just signed 15 so-so free agents to fill out their roster. They do that for a reason.

So sad.... as a die hard Oriole fan who has lived far away for the last 20 years and is looking at the forest and not the trees.... this is really bad....why don't the Orioles pass a collection plate for the next two years and send out the Norfolk team... then they can start to think about fielding a team.

It is insulting for the fans to just sit back, pay full value for tickets, and watch a team of cast offs, minor leaguers, and the like. There is absolutely no attempt to put any kind of competitive team on the field this year so why are they charging fully inflated prices for seats?

I have such little interest in watching this team of scaps that I will be cancelling my Directv MLB package. See you in a couple of years.

Pete, sorry to see that you're drinking the management's kool aid that we should be ponying up the big bucks now for some prayer in the future... otherwise, I think your great...

"To my knowledge, the Orioles own the rights to Quiroz, Moeller, Santos and Donachie(all assigned to minors). Do the own the rights to any other catcher who can help out at the major league level until Weiters is ready to step to help the parent ball club."

The Orioles also signed minor league FA catcher Jose Reyes. He's not anywhere near helping the major league club, but neither are some of the other names in that list.

To the poster who thinks Freel is the odd man out, think again. He will make this club because he is a RH hitting OF'er who can play all three OF positions, and he can play 3b in a pinch and some 2b in a pinch.

Lou Montanez has horrible defense in the OF so that kind of takes him out of the running as a defensive replacement for Luke Scott. And for some reason unbeknownst to me and many others around, the Orioles are not so high on Nolan Reimold. All of the discussions about him has been as a 4th or 5th OF'er type, not as a starter anywhere. Maybe that is just to light a fire under him and get him to perform, I don't know, but I think Reimold ends up in AAA.

"The 25 man roster is taking shape"?They signed Gomez to a minor league contract and this sets the roster. Boy I'm glad we got that out of the way. Bring on those yankees, red sox, & rays. We are ready!!!!

What is it taking the shape of? Phil Niekro in his late 40's ??

Pete,

Redding is a bum! No one is complaining , the Mets can afford to take a flyer on a guy, they have 4 major league starters and two prospects! But with reference to the O's as much as I like Gomez, he really doesn't fit our holes with other utility players. You might want to tell Andy that there was a Sachel Paige sighting in south central Pennsylvania and rumor locally has it he will pitch for beverages!

Pete,

As I gaze over the 24 man roster, I say to myself what have the O's done to bring me to Camden Yards? Hendrickson, Gomez, Freel, Isturiz, baseball is a business, putting people in the stands is the game. So I guess the Warehouse has decided if attendance goes down, they lower the payroll proportionately! We need 3 more Starting Pitchers and 3 better than the last two we signed. Lets not forget Guthrie has to be signed as well in the next two years. The Front Office needs to give players reasons to want to play or stay in Baltimore! I sure can't wait to see Henrickson go 2 and 2/3s followed by 5 relievers!

Thanks Pete,
Great info-on time-with humor. Did you notice that The Sun is sharing Md. reporting with WashPost, that redskins let alot of staff go without replacements, that Gomez signed a minor league contract? Does this mean that advertisers are already running away from MASN and the O's,just like the fans? So PA is "contracting" his $$$ even more? The Plan may be already altered=bRob is already gone and Nick can take less or just take his chances. Our national economy model seems to be to reinvest in order to stimulate growth and goodwill and to cut consumer costs in order to reinvigorate your "fans". Possibly, PA is taking the"Hoover" approach and a "great depression" is on the way. What do you think PA thinks of reinvesting combined with cost cutting as a strategy for a"plan"?

There is a major proble with the Orioles. I think this club is going in the right direction, stockpiling young talent and developping their farm system. At one time the orioles had the best farm team in the major leagues. We became the worst.

We are starting from a long ways back and have had very few quality major leaguers come out of there in quite a few years. Yes there has been two of recent vintage, but that is it. Our team has too many holes to hope to fill. We're probably looking at two maybe three years before we can compete for a pennant.

Our minor league system has a long long ways to go. It is amazing how far it fell. Look how long it took the Indians to develop their system and now it is one of the best. That is the difference between a successful team and one that isn;t. We have many more years to stockpile our system. I still don't see much in the way of player development. That is where the problem lies. We have promoted pitchers who haven't mastered the strike zone. We have drafted poorly, being more concerned about power numbers than batting average. We have selected high school pitchers, bad idea. Our farm system has been a total mess and I believe that Mcphail was brought in to turn that around and while trying to be financially responsible put a product on the field that can win a few games if things go perfect. It will be another long year.

Peter-
Franklin Highs team has taken shape as well. Since the transfer of that 4th outfielder from Dunbar.

Alright, Chris Gomez! why not bring back Maryland native Harold Baines too?! and Cal and Billy! and talk Mussina out of retirement! let PA turn the Orioles into the baseball version of the Harlem Globetrotters...

I'm all in for the rebuilding, but I can't help but think that his team won't be a legitimate contender until 2011 at the earliest. And that's if 2-3 of those young pitchers actually pan out, which is an iffy proposition.

I am looking at these signings as a good omen for the future. Mr. McPhail, I have two sons aged 5 and 3 that love baseball and are just as good as the current O's. I will negotiate their contracts for them. What do you say, secure the future of the farm system and the 2021 O's? 2 million a piece should secure them for the team. Give Pete a call and lets get this done!!! I need an answere by 2019 or we will be forced to go with Boris as our agent and sign with the Yanks!!

Ed in Alaska

It's starting to look like some of ya'll are getting it. The "orioles" will be playing in Norfolk, Bowie, Frederick and Aberdeen. You may not like the major league product, but there is still plenty to see. We already know we are going to stink, why let the future learn how to lose, let them learn how to win in the minors. No need for a 100 million doallar payroll.

Reading all of this kind of makes you wonder how many "fans" are actually fans. I've followed the Orioles for as long as I can remember, but there really isn't a whole lot to work with here. It just doesn't make sense to throw a whole lot of money at one player. Unfortunately, quantity is more important than quality right now.
There are quite a few good, possibly great, pitchers in our system already. We kind of need these lower paid players that McPhail has been signing. At least for the next year or two until we know who will emerge from the minors. Which at that point, we can start eliminating the least productive of the group to make room.
Maybe it's just me, but I don't see how one or two big name players are gonna help right now. A lot of teams only need a player or two to make their team competitive. We needed, at the least, 4 SPs, C, 1B, and a SS. That speaks for itself.

To the poster who says I should "think again" about Freel being the odd man out, I reply that he should "read again".
My comment was conditional.
I said IF Reimold was to hit his way onto the club in spring training, then THAT would make Freel the odd man out because Gomez will be on the team no matter what.
The same poster siad Lou Montanez is a "terrible fielder" which is simply not true. Just because he isn't Paul Blair doesn't mean he's "terrible".
Luke Scott isn't "terrible" either, but he's better suited to a full-time DH role because of his power, his clutch, and the nature of his hitting approach.
Montanez should start in LF every day. He didn't win a Triple Crown platooning only against lefties.

There is a good reason for a 13 man pitching staff. They will probably start with 12 with the early off days. Like last year they will need it. If you play 6 games a week, there will be 24 innings of work you need from your bullpen. So you have one guy, your closer that will work the games you have the lead in. So that leaves you 7 pitchers, then you have your left handed specialist that may pitch to one or two batters every other day and the need to go righty-lefty righty or vice versa. So really what you are doing is setting up 5 pitchers to handle 15 to 18 innings in long relief. When you have a staff that is loaded with very good front line starters that can get you into the 7th inning every game, I agree you need only 12. But lets be honest. Look at the rotation, right now we only have one person on the roster that averaged more than 6 innings per start and that was Guthrie, at about 6 1/3 innings per start. The rest of the rotation will be less than that, unless of course Jupiter aligns with Mars, they sign Lowe, the umpires agree to have a special strike zone only for pitchers wearing Oriole uniforms or they move the fences back at Camden Yards 50 feet. This is a very complicated team in a very complicated game, the O's can make it simple though, sign a good pitcher to eat innings.

Pete: I agree I find it funny on the Redding situation. I was hoping the O's would get Redding, now a team that has to win this year because of their 2008 collapse signs him. Next for the Mets will be either Derek Lowe or Oliver Perez. The O's should grab the one they do not sign.

Sorry Pete, I don't agree that the Dodgers are a good example. They were only pretty good because of Manny and that division they play in. Do the Padres have a first baseman we can trade Garret Olsen for?????

Yes, this sucks as a fan, but why don't ya'll sit back ( I know we have been doing it for more than 10 years now) and watch with an open mind. Remember, Andy has only been on the job for what, a year and a half and things don't happen overnight if you are in the position the O's are in. It could be worse, our hometean could be San Diego, Seattle, Pittsburg or Washington. All teams historically have a big stretch of down years. More recently, look at the Cubs, Rays, Indians and Brewers.

At least we always come in top 5 in draft picks. Its not like we ever lose any either because we never sign any type A free agents.
Monty Python Comes to mind....."Always look on the Bright side of Life, da-da, duh-duh, dooby-de-dooby-de-doop!"
Maybe we can petition the MLB to change it so, the best records get the top picks, and the worst records make the playoffs. It would be the start of a dynasty. Right now in Baltimore, the only Dynasty is reruns on LIFETIME Network.

FWIW, the Mets signed Redding more as rotation insurance than anything else. They are still looking to sign at least one and perhaps two more starters (Lowe/Perez/Wolf and perhaps Pedro Martinez), with Redding either in the bullpen as long relief or injury insurance.

ml

The Orioles are not the Harlem Globertrotters. The Orioles have become the Washington Generals.

PALEEEZ.... enough of this 'he's a great guy in the clubhouse" BS. How about for once getting a player and saying " he's a great guy to have on the field" ....

Last year, all year, we were next to last in ERA and so it was only a matter of time before that caught up to the Orioles in their W-L record. On the "Amazin' Mets" of the late 60's, manager Casey Stengel used to ask, "Can anyone here play this game?" That's what we need to demand of pitching - let's see who wants to and can do it.

P.S. I meant to add to my last post that the pitching needs simply makes Gomez's utility skills valuable since one less infielder will probably be kept on the team.

Come on Pete! Chris Gomez???? And this opens the door for which young player???? This team has you all hoodwinked! There is no plan!

This team is nothing but a joke...

It gets worse every signing they make... I'm telling you, Sammy Sosa is next...

And Pete, for you to still be onboard with this is amazing...

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Pete's reply: What's amazing is that you say you're no longer an Orioles fan, but you read my blog religiously. Thanks for that and keep it up. I don't believe you are no longer an Oriole fan. I believe if I came to your house and scratched you, there'd be black and orange splattered all over your nice berber carpet.

While I will acknowledge that the Orioles will field a poor team in 2009, I think the fans here are missing the point of what McPhail is trying to accomplish. With Matusz, Arrieta, Tillman, Bergesen and others looming in AA, the O's are simply trying to find serviceable pitchers to plug in until 2010 or 2011 when some of these guys are ready. Why sign a Derek Lowe to three years, when we won't be ready to contend until his contract has expired? Why sign a Derek Lowe for three years, when he takes a valuable rotation spot away from one of these guys in 2010, when they are ready to step in? McPhail had nothing to do with the previous ten years, his task was to take what he was given in 2007 and mold it into a contender. He understands, as should all O's fans, that the future of the team hinges on that young starting pitching in AA. Signing Brad Penny, Derek Lowe and Jon Garland to three year deals is absolutely pointless if they come at a high cost.

Pete,

A thought here. I really haven't seen any interest on Sheets by anyone yet. And with the injury history, it's understandable. However, that said, if the market continues as it has, don't you think it might be prudent for Andy to offer the guy a 1 year incentive laden deal that pays him like a front line starter when he hit's 175 innings pitched. It would benefit Sheets and allow him to convince other teams next year that the injury issue/risk is not what everyone is making it out to be. A injury free 2009 season puts him in a really good position next off season. And if the guy hit 175 innings and succumbed to injury, we'd only be on the hook for 1 year. Your thoughts?


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Pete's reply: I agree that if the price is right, it's worth the gamble. I don't know if the price comes down that far, but the Penny contract surprised me, so who knows?

Sad to see the O's resemble the smaller market teams like KC and Pitt. The only difference between those teams and the O's is the revenue. The Orioles and Angelos are bringing in enough revenue to sign a big free agent name, but instead we get Gomez and some washed up pitcher from Japan? What a joke this once proud franchise has become!

When they didn't sign Teixeira, I cancelled my season tickets. I've been fooled for too long. It's tiime to be a realist and realize Angelos is putting the least expensive product on the field to generate the most money possible. What he fails to realize is that if he put a better product on the field, he would get more people in the seats and in turn get more revenue.

"this is really bad....why don't the Orioles pass a collection plate for the next two years and send out the Norfolk team... then they can start to think about fielding a team" given what we've seen going on that appears to be the case. It is very discouraging as a fan. I realize the plan is to stockpile talent and let it develop, but it seems that this season is being completely written off. WHY NOT sign some veteran free agent pitchers who can mentor the youngsters? The O was not to bad last year, with Roberts setting the table, and Mora, Markakis and Huff/Scott. 13 pitchers won't be enough...

If you haters dont want to watch Oriole baseball consider living in an area that doesnt have MLB and you will appreciate them more

like it or not the only way to compete in this division is to out smart the yankees/red sox not out spend them

you develop players through smart drafting and proper development....sheesh you people need to relax even signing Tex would not add more than 5-7 wins to our team

Pete ..keep up the good work

Time for a new GM like say Billy Bean, and a new owner PLEASE CAL, PLEASE CAL, PLEASE CAL. PA and Mcfail, need to hear the old saying, TAKES MONEY TO MAKE MONEY!!!!!!!!!! I would be a believer if they would sign Nick and B-rob, but the longer you fight over dollars, the more you piss them off. It's not like free agents are knocking are doors down to play here. I understand not overpaying for Tex and others, but the guy's that came from are minors, COME ON, we can't give them a winner, geezzzz throw them a money bone then. PA and Mcfail, I hate you and what you have done to a once relavant franchice...........

Pete: Forget baseball for the day. GO RAVENS! The score will be 23-6 Ravens over the Titans.

To the poster who says I should "think again" about Freel being the odd man out, I reply that he should "read again".
My comment was conditional.
I said IF Reimold was to hit his way onto the club in spring training, then THAT would make Freel the odd man out because Gomez will be on the team no matter what.
"The same poster siad Lou Montanez is a "terrible fielder" which is simply not true. Just because he isn't Paul Blair doesn't mean he's "terrible".
Luke Scott isn't "terrible" either, but he's better suited to a full-time DH role because of his power, his clutch, and the nature of his hitting approach.
Montanez should start in LF every day. He didn't win a Triple Crown platooning only against lefties."

I guess you think Dave Trembley doesn't know what he's talking about then in regard to Montanez. His defense is precisely why he didn't play more last season. Also, he didn't win that triple crown in the majors, it was in AA...and he was 27 years old...kind of a bit advanced age for that level of play. Check out his career hitting numbers in AAA and see what you think.

Scott is better defensively in LF than Montanez is right now. Montanez will not make this team over Ryan Freel and niether will Reimold. If anything, one of those two will make the team with Freel, but not instead of him. The only way that happens is if Freel gets hurt, which is a good possibility.

Hope the scouting department is on the ball, looks like we'll be picking in the top 5 again in 2010.

Well we got another great guy in the clubhouse..that's awesome! At least these guys can lose 100 games with people they get along with. To quote the great Dave 'Tiger' Williams.."nice guys finished last, I'd rather play with a bunch of *bleeping* jerks"

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Pete's reply: I understand your cynicism, but we're talking about a utility guy here. They're usually nice guys because they can't afford not to be. You're not going to play a real prospect in that role, so Gomez is a decent acquisition.

13 pitchers is ridiculous....we need 4 bench players..I think we will have a pleasant surprise in the rotation this year, as I think one or two of the youngsters will step up....just have that feeling

Pete, now don't get a big head on this, but I think your a good writer and I actually like what you have to say. I may not agree with you but I do like reading what you have to say. So there, I said it... Just don't let anyone know...

Now, let me clear up the "No Longer an Oriole Fan" thing. I am a lifelong fan, I'm 47, but these last 11 years have been pitiful. And its just getting worst. I have not been to a game for 4 years and I won't until I see results, not on field results, front office results. There is no plan. Angelos has a cashcow, not like the Yanks but he has the money. He has run off all the good baseball people and McPhail is next.

I would rather see them sign a Rule 5 Free Agent instead of these 37 year olds. At least you get someone young who has a possibility of turning into something decent not these old guys whose skills are on the downturn.

I do not want to hear this we are waiting on the young guys stuff. The only young guys this team has are Jones, Markakis and hopefully Wieters. Young pitchers? Like always, the O's build up their minor league talent only to see them falter.

More and more fans are realizing this is a joke and the Gomez signing just added to the hilarity. Mark my word, the O's will have the lowest attendance this year ever at Camden Yards.

So there, I said it, I like reading what you have to say, you made me do it, you pressured me!

BTW, I bleed Purple and Black!

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Pete's reply: I was just tweaking you. I agree that the O's attendance will sag again, probably to about 1.8 million. It's hard to go much lower than that because of the influx from NY and Boston and the corporate ticket base.

Pete,

My major concern is we keep hearing "we have to develope the young pitching in AAA and AA." Well we have heard that for the last 5-7 years and no one shows up. Lowen is in Toronto and did not pan out, Maine is in NY and doing well, Penn has not made strides, the only good pitcher we had we traded for Jones.

Pete, are the new pitching names going to develop? What are we dong to acquire good young players who may develop?

What are the prospects of trading Olson to the Cubs, now that it looks like there potential new owner will want to go after Peavy? Lets swap Olson for Vitters straight up. Then we put him in AAA for the year and he replaces Mora at 3rd. Huff will have another good year and we can sign him to an extension to play 1st base until we can trade for a 1st base prospect, Huff is an excellent player is not that old, he could be a fixture at 1st for 5 or 6 years if we let him have it.

Looking forward to your response.

Ed in Alaska


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Pete's reply: I think you're giving Olson too much value. The Cubs wanted him because the Padres wanted him. They apparently weren't interested in a straight-up deal when Peavy fell through.

If your'e gonna' sign the likes of a Chris Gomez , then why not re-sign Millar ?

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Pete's reply: Maybe because that might knock Montanez off the roster.

When Montanez proved he could hit MAJOR LEAGUE pitching at a .300 clip, Trembley did the logical thing and gave him more playing time. That's what happened.

Frank Robinson didn't win the Triple Crown until he switched leagues at age 30.
Guess he just wasn't very good either.
Where do some of you people get your cause and effect logic from?

I disagree that Scott is a better LF'er than Montanez. I think most people who watched both in 2008 would also.

Keep them comments a-commin' though.


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Pete's reply: Bad analogy. Frank Robinson was a great, established player when he was traded here. He was a former Rookie of the Year and somebody stupidly thought he was getting old. Montanez is a good kid who deserves a chance, but you can't put that kind of thing on him.

Look I love baseball and I have really really tried to hang in there with the Orioles but you know what enough is enough. Ok I can accept that Mark the Yankee had a price tag that exceeded our means but come on you expect me to shell out money to watch Chris Gomez, Mark Hendrickson? Throw the fans a bone for gods sake sign a couple guys even if they are only "bridges" to the that better future we seem to always be promised. Maybe they win us a few more games, maybe they dont but at least we would have something to more to consider than the cow curd we being fed now. Last thought how long will it be till Markakis is at Camden yards in a Yankee or Red Sox jersey cause we muffed that up?

Hang it up best case scenerio maybe we could avoid another 90 loss season but with the rest of the division ratcheting it up to compete with Tampa I am guessing 100 losses is coming ....sry folks to make a Yogi Berra type comment I would say "You cant compete with big league teams if 1/2 your roster is is only 1/3 as good as 100% of theirs"

Why don't we try Montanez at first base cause he's not that great of a left fielder anyway. It gives a right handed hitter that were wanting. Trade Luke Scott for a pitcher.Then you can platoon Reimold and Freel in leftfield.

Why don't we try Montanez at first base cause he's not that great of a left fielder anyway. It gives a right handed hitter that were wanting. Trade Luke Scott for a pitcher.Then you can platoon Reimold and Freel in leftfield.

GO GET ADAM DUNN PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Bear The Birdfan -

I can't for the life of me even figure out why you would attempt to tie Frank Robby & Montanez into the same thought. ARE YOU KIDDING! A Hall of Famer, one of the greatest players in any generation, versus some over-aged AA sensation. Pete I think some detention is in order here!!

Can you say "last place again", baby?

Instead of Gomez, Hendrickson, and Izturas, the O's should have invested in young prospects and taken last place, because that's what's in store anyway.

This is just more of Angelo's promise to put a "professional team" on the field.

Loser.

Hi Peter I just want your personal opinion on the reality of the orioles roster. I believe sucess has a certain formula. When your a so called professional team sucess starts from the up top. Sucess is a mentality, attitude, passsion, and chemistry that everyone has to buy into. It's a formula in which the orioles which I grew up watching, just dont have yet to draw attention to themselves to draw in a player of star quality. The other baltimore pro team, Ravens, has a formula in which has been installed and established so when outside players sign they know what they have to do in order to be sucessful in the ravens organization. This helps them get more out of players than even sometimes the player might have saw themselves doing, but after a while they buy in and end making a name for themselves. What's the Oriole way? Who's the Oriole prototype player? Kevin Millar? Brian Roberts? Who's the leader? Who's the player all the fans love and players around the league respect enough to wanna battle a vigorous 164 game schedule with? I think Tex would've been a great start of that because of the elements he carries with him but why go to the orioles? We have to forget about the big name free agents and worry about establishing the oriole way again so players are drawn in and want to be apart of something special. Then players will sign and ultimately contribute to a competive major league organiztion. What comes from that? Chemistry!!! Hustle every ball out like it's your last play and hold each player accountable for there role on the team. We have alot of young talent and that's a positive because now you have the ability to mold each player into the player we invisioned them being after giving them the prevelige to be apart of a PROFESSIONAL baseball team. In regards to being a competive and successful teams that other players, coaches, and teams respect and admire, how well do you think McPhail is doing as our GM? Baseball is a game of grit and mental thoughness...the team who makes the least amount of errors, walks, and QUALITY usually 8 out 10 times usually wins


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Pete's reply: I think he's doing the unexciting, frustrating things you have to do to ever get to that point. Signing so-so free agents to big contracts would make a few fans happy and give the media more to talk about, but somebody has to build a foundation. Do I believe it will be enough to put the O's on a par with the Red Sox and Yankees? I think that's going to be very difficult and will require a big free agent commitment at the proper time. i think it's fair to wonder if Peter Angelos will allow that free agent commitment to happen if th O's ever get close. Lots of ifs. But it's possible.

Nice site really!

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About Peter Schmuck
Peter Schmuck wants you to know that, contrary to popular belief, he is more than just a bon vivant, raconteur and collector of blousy flowered shirts. He is a semi-respected journalist who has covered virtually every sport -- except luge, of course – and tackled issues that transcend the mere games people play. If that isn’t enough to qualify him to provide witty, wide-ranging commentary on the sports world ... and the rest of the world, for that matter ... he is an avid reader of history, biography and the classics, as well as a charming blowhard who pops off on both sports and politics on WBAL Radio. That means you can expect a little of everything in The Schmuck Stops Here, but the major focus will be keeping you up to the minute on Baltimore’s major sports teams and themes, whether it’s throwing up the Orioles lineup the minute it’s announced or updating you on the latest sprained ankle in Owings Mills. Oh, and by the way, that’s Mr. Schmuck to you.

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