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June 29, 2009

Credit where it's due

Nobody to second-guess after this one, except maybe the Orioles' security people who allowed Jon Lester and J.D. Drew into the ballpark earlier today. Lester did what Jon Lester does to the Orioles -- improving to 8-0 lifetime against them -- and the Red Sox bullpen did what it has been doing to just about everybody this year. The terrific catch by Jason Bay to end the game was just a bonus for the Red Sox faithful that pumped up the crowd at Camden Yards tonight.

If Bay had not made the diving pick, the Orioles would have brought the tying run to the plate, but we're still talking about closer Jonathan Papelbon on the mound needing just one more out.

Manager Dave Trembley said after the game that it's no secret why Lester dominated the Orioles again.

"He's got three pitches,'' Trembley said. "He goes from 88-89 to 95-96 with his fastball and he cuts it in on right-handed batters...throws that sweeping breaking ball and the two-seamer away. He's just got a repertoire and he seems like when he pitches against us, he's on his game...Like I said, I wish three or four of those line drives had fallen in, but they didn't."

Posted by Peter Schmuck at 9:55 PM | | Comments (34)
Categories: Just baseball



Just shows how far we have to go to get to the top! Starting pitching, fielding, hitting and relief pitching. The only thing I saw the Sox do poorly was try to lay down a bunt!

This game could have been a lot worse... the O's didnt do that bad. This sox team is arguably the best team in baseball.

If we don't do any damage against Smoltz tomorrow, a sweep is close to a definite. A day game and a series finale against Beckett on Wednesday is a likely L even with Bergesen going.

I see Huff homering in the next two games and Markakis, Jones, Roberts, and Andino getting key hits. Hill and Bergesen will pitch well.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, Baltimore will beat Boston.

Adam Jones #1 Web Gem on Baseball tonight! Kruk though said Wieters needs to be more like Pudge Rod


I can see Tuesday.... Maybe but Josh Beckett is going to be very tough on Wednesday.

Maybe Beckett will eat some bad Crab and we get to play Penny or Wake instead lol

It would not be much news that Lester is 8-0 versus the birds if he was a 100 game winner at this point, but he has 34 big league wins, so about one quarter have been against the O's. That is impressive and you have to take your hat off to him. Funny on the Kruk comment, Wieters would have to shrink 9 inches in height to be like Pudge. I would rather say be more like Bench, he was always hammering the ball with the Red Machine, going to the playoffs every year.

The Red Sox as a team have momentum and have had it for years. This allows them to win games they perhaps shouldn't but it doesn't matter because they win. The Orioles on the other hand have no momentum and haven't had it for many years. Teams with no mo will make all kinds of excuses as to why they don't win a particular game. Bad umpiring, bad baserunning, bad luck, etc. But the bottom line is they don't win. Of course having the talent to compete, not just beating up on the bottom feeders, would be a good start for a team seeking momentum.

The Orioles are my 2nd favorite team and I nearly all ways wish them well. Except when they play the Red Sox. I recall when the Sox had bad teams, even towards the end of Ted Williams career. Don't give up on your team. Events tend to be cyclical and you will have your days. again.

The Orioles are my 2nd favorite team and I nearly all ways wish them well. Except when they play the Red Sox. I recall when the Sox had bad teams, even towards the end of Ted Williams career. Don't give up on your team. Events tend to be cyclical and you will have your days. again.

Thanks for sharing that critical bit of info Bobby... JK man hahah

Berken got thrown to the wolves last night... Poor guy shouldnt have been pitching aganst Lester. This kind of thing is why we have a new staff every year.

Pete's reply: That's why Andy signed a guy like Eaton, but everybody trashed him for it. Still, Berken didn't pitch against Lester, he pitched against the Red Sox offense. He didn't do great, but he hung in and kept things from getting out of hand. I give him credit for that.

The plain fact is the Red Sox are just a much better team. We see what sort of baserunning mistakes the O's make, so in contrast we see a Sox runner force his third balk of their current road trip. The O's Jones makes a great fielding play while the Sox make several of them. Berken manages to barely slow down their offense, Lester shuts ours down completely.
The O's still have a long way to go before they will compete with Boston.

John - do you think the manager should shuffle his pitching rotation for every series? That there was much choice for pitching Berken last night, or for Bergesen's turn coming up against Beckett on Wednesday? When it's your turn in the rotation, you take the ball and pitch against whoever the opponent is. Complaining about pitching matchups is too much like crying, and we all know there's no crying in baseball.


This is happening because the vets we picked up in the offseason are either broken now or no good and we are forced to have are young talent get their brains beat out. Jack this rotation makes me cry and i will continue crying until we get some vets to take the ball. We got plenty of position players.. time to make a move.

Pete's reply: I'm in favor of signing a quality free agent starter next offseason, but I can't believe I'm now hearing people say they DON'T want to see the young guys. This is an interesting and diverse group of posters.

Outside of using him as a pinch runner, is our manager, Mike Trembley, ever going to use the talents of Felix Pie again?
There are a lot of Right Handed Pitchers that we will be facing in the upcoming weeks. Why not give Felix at least 2-3 at bats per game?
I am a "Diehard" Oriole Fan from New Jersey and I just can understand why he waits weeks before putting him in for 1 swing.
Thanks for taking my E-Mail, Bill

Pete's reply: You'll see Felix out there, but who do you want to start him ahead of...Reimold?


The manager's name is Dave Trembley but I give you credit most people dont even know his last name either..


All season long I have wanted the rookies to play in favorable situations but nothing too far out of their level. Playing these guys in bad matchups can take a toll. We just need to add at least one good reliable vet to add to the staff for situations a rookie should not be in.

It is obvious, the Red Sox are simply a better team than the Orioles.

Don't blame the base running mistakes for Sunday's loss. The problem is that the players are playing with poor motivation--and not just on Sunday.

For example, Brian Roberts has turned his usual September Slide into a June Swoon--in fact, some of the heavy lumber (Jones, Markakis, Mora) have been swooning lately.

Whether one wants to blame Trembley or the players for the lack of motivation does not matter. The bottom line is that when this team plays up to potential, they are only 4 starting pitchers away from success. The way they have played lately, even in the wins over the Nats, has been less than excitable, to say the least.

My guess is that Trembley won't survive the All Star Break.

Thanks as usual for the perspective, Pete. I don't like giving it up to a scrub like Lester, but he beats us fair and square every time.

I get a little disconcerted now, though, when I read some of the Oriole players' glowing reports of opposing pitchers. The last time a staff got this kind of commendation was when the multiple 100mph Detroit hurlers stole all the confidence away from our hitters and we tanked for two weeks. Good sportsmanship is one thing, but I get scared feeling that great opposition just fires up our lineup to speak favorably rather than hunker down and HIT favorably.

I know people say that good pitching beats good hitting, and I know that Pujols strikes out every now and then, but...

...can't great hitting occasionally beat out great pitching? Is our hitting potential merely good and not great?

Seeing Berken get blasted last night makes me a little worried too. I want these young guys to play and more than a few seasons.. We cant win with hitting alone.. we proved that so far this season.

Are the Vets', (B-Rob, Huff, Mora, and Guthrie) troubled because they'd rather not get traded. I'm not talking about a "conscious" type thing, but rather a "sub-conscious" thing. Here's a group of guys that signed with the O's and have been with them through the lean years, and looking forward they see (maybe even more so than us fans) how bright the future could be.

I'm just saying, there's probably a part of them, in the back of their mind, that wants to stay in Baltimore. Mora and Huff in particular might (contract years) might be thinking how to get hitched to a team next year too if their moved out.

What DT's post-game comments Monday night about wishing the Orioles could one day have a strike zone the size of the Boston pitchers? When pressed he didn't elaborate (probably didn't want the fine), but we know what he was referring to. It came off as a little whiny to me, but maybe Hill will get a little extra luv from the umps tonight.

Pete and Ron,
I do apologize for typing in Dave Trembley's name as Mike Trembley. My "one finger typing skils" are not up to par.
In answer to your question, no I would not substitute Felix for Nolan at this time.
But what about in a DH role, for a few games? Just to see him handle a bat again, as well as, his speed on the bases. OK, granted he made one base running error, but who on our team has not made a few base running mistakes in the last month. That's baseball.
Let me know...
Thanks again,

Pete's reply: Again, I don't see how you play him ahead of Luke at DH, but I wish they could give him some opportunities.

Hi Bill i'm a huge Pie fan but i think the point is there's a set lineup already against right handed pitchers. Besides sitting Reimold or Jones occasionally there's really no way for Trembley to get him in. Perhaps thats why the manager scapegoated him so much in the one game he did play; DT needs to justify his sitting. One other way to play him might be to sit Mora for a game or two, moving Huff to third, Scott to first and Reimold to dh. But i'm not sure if Scott can play first. The Orioles are last in the league in stolen bases; having Felix bat 2nd with the responsibility of getting on base would in my opinion benefit both player and team.

Good feedback on Felix and the rotation.
Thanks, Bill Bocchino

Birdfan, where do you get off calling Lester a "scrub"? He has pitched for a World Series-winning win & was pitcher of the month twice last season.

I know losing sucks, but that's no reason to make with nonsensical ad hominem attacks.

Do you know what I yelled at my TV when Bay made that play? "These guys catch everything!" If there's fundamentally better team out there I'd like to see it. These guys know how to work pitchers, too. Berken was in school yesterday, that's for sure. Hill better have his A-game on tonight like he did vs. Philly.

Why wasn't anyone backing up Adam Jones on that triple in the first inning? I wasn't at the game so didn't get a full picture, but it looked like Markakis and Nolan were nowhere to be found. Two different fundamental and defensive teams on the field last night.

So what your saying is that Andy signed wash ups this season to take loses before the rookies were ready? Well the rookies proved to be ready now and they are easily better than wash ups we signed but we still lack a few veteran players to take the mound against tough teams. It looks like the O’s were trying to be the Texas Rangers, Florida Marlins or the Mike D'antoni coached Suns. Forget the pitching and go all out offensively.. Well that hasn’t worked out at all. Andy had to of known the starting pitchers he signed were going to have issues and if not the people that advised him should be looked at. Personally I hate this sink or swim strategy for the young guys it just isn’t fair.


Considering how bad our pitching is we have no right to talk @hit about any Boston pitcher even Penny or Wakefield... They could be our 1-2 SP.

Sorry gang, varying definitions of "scrub".

Jon Lester is a stellar pitcher, no doubt, even if it's frustrating to lose to him.

My meaning was more along the lines of "young scrub"--as someone else pointed out, he's only got 30-some wins at the major league level. Not a talent evaluation--more a point about how such a young pitcher can make the O's look like they're facing Greg Maddux.

My apologies for being lackadaisical with my slang, and my thanks to you all for calling me out on it. Orioles fans are good people.


Dont get me wrong man I hate the Bosux as much as anyone but we cant act totally like the nation.... until we win a WS lol.

Thanks, John. I can't say I really hate the Red Sox--I've never been more excited by a team come October--but I sure do yearn for the years when the Orioles will find their way on to the scoreboard even against daunting pitchers.

And when the Orioles are exciting in October, of course.

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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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