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July 21, 2009

O's: Just another sad Bronx tale

There are worse things than losing a game on a walkoff home run by Hideki Matsui after some sketchy baserunning and suspect clutch hitting deprived the Orioles of a legitimate shot at opening the series at the new Yankee Stadium with an uplifting victory. I'm guessing, however, that you can't think of any right now.

There's really nothing to do but give David Hernandez his props and look ahead to tomorrow night's game, though it's hard to get too excited about another start by left-hander Rich Hill. This is shaping up as another three-day mugging in the Bronx, with Jason Berken set to go on Wednesday, but I guess you never know.

Posted by Peter Schmuck at 12:07 AM | | Comments (73)
Categories: Just baseball
        

Comments

Gotta love the start by Hernandez. I first saw him as a potential solid reliever but I think now that he may just make it as an effective starter. Maybe he learned a little from the first two innings today. If he could find a way to create just a little more movement on his pitches to go with that good velocity he could start attacking batters more and keep that pitch count down.
Markakis may finally be snapping out of his own homerun drought, but I don't see any light at the end of the tunnel for Mora. I don't really see anywhere for him to go, so I guess we're stuck with him for the rest of the year. He's still playing pretty good D though, but with his salary, we'd have to practically give him away for free.
Things have really taken a turn for the worse with all the O's minor leagers not named Tillman, Arrietta or Matusz. (Especially Snyder, Patton, Erbe, Britton, Avery, Hoes etc. etc. etc.)I'm hoping we'll see the big 3 in Oriole uniforms very soon and then it should be back to drawing board for McPhail with regards to the farm system. I say get rid of all the high money deadwood on the O's that we can right now cuz we're gonna need some more prospects in a hurry.

Pete, please tell me that JJ is hurt? If he isn't hurt, he needs another picth because I think the hitters have caught up to him.

He hasn't looked the same for the last 6 weeks or so.

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Pete's reply: He might be a little tired, but I don't' think he's hurt.

Brian Roberts' slide into home plate where he was tagged out made him look like a wussy. Why slide completely around like he did and not even touch the plate? The PITCHER was covering the plate, go in hard feet first and put a clete in his leg/hand and at least try to rattle him or knock the ball lose. I undertand if the catcher was covering you try that slide but with a defensless pitcher not even looking at you when you begin sliding go in hard!

Brian Roberts' slide into home plate where he was tagged out made him look like a wussy. Why slide completely around like he did and not even touch the plate? The PITCHER was covering the plate, go in hard feet first and put a clete in his leg/hand and at least try to rattle him or knock the ball lose. I undertand if the catcher was covering you try that slide but with a defensless pitcher not even looking at you when you begin sliding go in hard!

Pete, you got it right, sketchy baserunning and suspect clutch hitting. In a close game like that why would roberts even try to score with two outs. I have been saying for the whole season I don't understand why we don't bunt. Everyone on the team should be able to bunt. You could feel going into the bottom of the ninth that the stanks would win, and they deserved to for the way we played.

Hey Pete,
I do not follow all of the other major league teams as closely as I do the O's, but with watching all of the sports shows on tv I would have to say that we are the worst (if not the worst, close to it) team when it comes to clutch situations where we need a hit or some good baserunning. Early in the year, everyone was saying how great a hitting team we are and that may be true for innings one through six, but we are not a clutch team when it counts near the end of the game. I feel that is part of the fundamentals of the game that this team is lacking. When you come up to the plate with men in scoring position late in the game, you have an idea of how the pitcher wants to pitch you to get you out so you can't knock in the run. Markakis comes up last night with runners on 2nd & 3rd and a new pitcher was brought in to face him - and he swings at the first pitch. Ground to first (Tex made a nice play) and he throws home to get the runner out. First or second pitch to Jones bounces away from the catcher and Roberts is breaking back to 3rd and then he tries to score and is tagged out. FUNDAMENTALS!!!!!


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Pete's reply: Statistically, the O's are pretty good with men on base, but not when it comes to the intangibles. It's a complex issue, of course. Brian Roberts delivered a clutch hit with Izturis running, but Izturis screwed it up. The wild pitch play with Roberts, I think, was just one of those things. I don't think you can question his desire to make the play.

No I know. It's going to be a mugging, just as you said. Real shame 'cause I got a great vibe of the team before the All-Star break. After they get trounced by the Red Sox in a a few days I'll have given up hope and return to waiting for Chris Tillman to show up.

Just another lost night at the plate against a lefthanded starting pitcher.

Johnson has had location problems the last few weeks. I do not think injury has anything to do with it. Sometimes you just get beat, and it was not like some slap hitter beat him. It happens, too bad we could not scratch out a win, not to shabby to hold the Yanks to two runs.

So since Trembley came out and praised the heady baserunning yesterday, why wasn't he out discussing the poor baserunning tonight?

"Got to give these guys credit when they deserve it."
- DT after Sunday's win

Yeah it is amazing that a left handed pitcher that has only 223 career wins beat us.

It's not always the big moves you make that make you sucessful or not,it's the litle moves,that set you apart.I've not been and am still not a DT fan,never will be,but he's been handicapped by having next to no bench all year,not that he would ever use them unless somebody gets hurt,but Pie,and Andino are just wasting time out there.When is the last time Pie has even gotten an atbat?Then you trade youronly productive bench player for some run of the mill,non descript reliever,(like we don't have enoughof those already,so that Brian Bass won't see another appearance in 2 weks again.Add to the fundamental awareness,or lack thereof that this team displays on an almost nightly basis and you have a sub .500 team playingout the string.I can't see any of the old Oriole players not taking out the pitcher on a hard feet first slide instead of that wussy move Brian Roberts pulled last night,and that's after gettinga bad read on the ball and breaking back to third to start with.And Izturis should have hadawhite cane out there last nightas bad as he looked on the bases,even though he got his foot in beforethe tag,although it was a bang bang play.And again why waste George Sherrill,who has been near perfect,everybody but the umpires knowhe had Veritek struck out in Boston,for about 2 months.You leave in a Jim Johnson,who has struggled for over a month to face a lefty,who has always hit us well.Makes no sense.We hadnumerous cahnces to move the runners along,but Dt must be having the DT's,because we never sacrifice bunt.I'm so glad we went back to stressing the fundamentals thisyear.I'd hate to think where we'd be without them.If Trembley thinks this is the Orioles Way,he must have watched too many video's of the JeffStone,Alan Wiggins,Wayne Gross,Steve Kline,Glenn Davis,Albert Belle,etc.etc,video's.No excuse for losing that game last night,NONE.Poor management leads to no accountability,leads to poor execution leads to another losing season.Yes,we have wasted by my count,somewhere between 16-20 QS by our pitchers,who have given up three runs or less and lost,and almost all of them have left tied or with a lead.Look it up Pete.I'm tired of the excuseitis on this team.It's not the rookies making the boneheaded plays for the most part,it's the "so-called" veterans and "leaders" 2 of whom signed big money extensions.What happened to the Nick Markakis who used to hustle and work the count?Cla Meredith,that will probably be our big move before the trade deadline.Aubrey Huff hit two more shots last night,one carroms off the first baseman and bounces right to the secod baseman and one the guy makes a shoe stringcatch on.The guy has hit more rockets right at people since anybody I can remember except for Rick Dempsey back in his heyday.And still has 57 RBI's with nobody batting behind him.Melvin Mora again?Give me a break.Look at Tex's numbers since Rodriguez has come back,huge difference.We have some good youngtalent on this team,Weiters has always looked overmatched every where he has started for the first month or two,but he has a good eye and a smooth swing,he'll be fine,Reimold has proven he is the real deal and Jones is a second year All Star,andis starting to showcase his speed a little more.Bergeson and Hernandez look like solid starters,and even berkins shows promise,just needs to add another pitch and go down for some more work.Tillman has been lights out,what more does he need to prove in AAA?So tired of watching the same sad sack Orioles accept losing,night in and night out.I hated to lose,still do.And until the Orioles get somebody as a manager who feels the same ay,they will continue to lose.Memo to Dave,the definition of insanity is doing the same things over and over and expecting different results.Memo to self,Expect to hear for the next two years,this isjust a throw away year,wait til 2013 then we'll be ready,repeat after me,we have the longest rebuilding stretch in the history of baseball.Floridadismantled almost their entire team twice and won two World Series and we're still rebuilding.What's the common denominator?Peter Angelos and his yes men as managers.Dave Trembley is just happy to have a job because nobody else will hire him as a major league manager when he leaves here,you can bet the Schmuckster'shouse on it.

You know I have been dissing Mora for a couple of months now. It has just occured to me that maybe I (and a lot of other fans) have been unfair to him. After all it isn't Mora who continues to pencil his name in the fifth spot day after day, even though Mora has always hit in the 2 slot, and been productive there. Trembly had a good idea to start the season off trying Mora in the 5 hole. By now, hwever it should be obvious that this is a failed idea. Mora has not been productive there. He is having the worst season I can ever remember for him. Trembly recently dropped Mora down in the order and Mora began to produce, so what does Trembly do? He moves him back into the 5 hole, and Mora stops hitting. Geez, what does it take for Trembly to get a clue?
I also wish Trmbly would stop flip- flopping Jones and Markakis in the batting order. The 2 spot and the 3 spot in the batting order require very different approaches at the plate. When is Trembly going to stop jerking around the hitters and let them get comfortable with where they are hitting and what they need to do at the plate?

Ditto on what Burt said.

OMG. Sketchy base running. Can you imagine? Maybe they need to have a mini baseball clinic and go back to the basics!

since i was watching on the yes network, i got a slo-mo of the yankers celebration (could've turned it off but was stuck in disgusted fascination). do all teams do the 'toss up the batting helmet and battle for who gets to catch it after a walk-off HR' or is this just ANOTHER reason to hate the yankers? it was awful. they were like a swarm of drunken bridesmaids with a-roid having the goofiest stuff-eating grin of them all.

Will someone tell me why the O's continue to be one of the worst, if not THE worst road team inbaseball? We're not just bad on the road, we're horrific on the road. Impossible to watch road games. Impossible to understand why we've become so inept on the road during the past several years. Has to be mental, because they really look like a different team at home. At home we're usually pretty competitive. On the road almost every game is a guaranteed loss. Until MacPhail can find some players who can win on the road, the O's will remain the last place team in the AL East. What gives?

Gritty defense by the Yanks in the 8th inning last night. Good advice to anyone - don't hit the ball to Tex. I had no idea Molina was that atheltic to make that throw to the plate. Sure, Roberts hesitated, but it was the right move to try and score that run.

Matsui was trying to tee off on the last few pitches JJ threw to him until he, well, teed off on one. That ball was right over the plate. If you see a guy swinging like that, bust him in, let his aggressiveness get himself out. Having never thrown a pitch in the major leagues, that was my observation, but what then is blogging for?

I watched Cal's 2,131 game on my iPod the last few days. It's available on the MLB.com store on iTunes. Can't help but get a lump in my throat.

Pete, what do these guys work on in spring training? Their tans?

Pardon the random thoughts: Sometimes you have to give credit to the opposing teams pitching for shutting batters down. That said, when in the h*** are the O's going to hire a base running coach? How many games has this team lost due to lousy base running, getting picked off, etc? I've been following the O's since the 60's and have never seen a team this bad running the bases. Never. If there already is a base running coach (Shelby?) on the team, FIRE HIM and get someone in who knows the art of base running. Frank Robinson and Eddie Murray weren't speed demons on the base paths but I don't ever remember them making boneheaded mistakes. Another random thought: Adam Jones. I think if he was far less concerned with blowing bubbles with his gum and making it look "cool" that he can do that while catching and base running, he wouldn't seem so lackadaisical. The bubblegum bubbles can't be just "instinct" or else he would be doing it while swinging the bat also. Get rid of the gum and I bet he keeps his head in the game more. Mora and Huff? Pitiful; plain and simple, nothing more to say. One last thing. What happened to Andino and Pie? If Zaun is given his one day a week start, why not Andino and Pie? Regardless of what has been said about Pie, if you look at his swing the last dozen or more times he's batted (if you can remember that far back), he's hit the ball with more authority. Last I looked he was "up" to .234, which considering him wallowing below .200 for the most part does show improvement. Andino? I like the guy a lot because he ALWAYS hustles. One last thing; the O's with "runners" on second and third, one out last night in the eighth...what a prime spot for that would have been for Oscar Salazar to pinch hit. Oh well...keep the faith, the future looks bright, but I still have to scratch my head at some things....

Last night was some of the worst baserunning I ever saw. They looked like some little leaguers on the basepaths. Why are the base coaches out there for when they can't even get the signals right?? I don't blame T Bone that much (except for Izturis' baserunning blunder), but Juan Samuel?? He needs to go! It was bad enough that they couldn't drive in a run, so when you have Adam Jones at the plate, why even take a chance and send him? They were better off taking a chance on AJ getting something to hit. This has been going on all year. It needs to be nipped in the bud or else we'll be seeing once again another 2nd half breakdown.

The lack of discipline in all areas of this team kills me, especially at the plate. How many times did we kill potential rallies last night by grounding out on the first pitch? 2 that I can remember.

After Jones bunted his way onto first base, all the announcers were talking about how Jones should try to steal 2nd. He never got the chance, because Huff swung at the first pitch he saw and grounded into a double play.

Nick Markakis' gaffe pisses me off even more, because he was facing a clearly erratic pitcher in Phil Coke. Hell, he probably would have walked the bases full, but Nick took the first pitch he saw right to Texeira. This team looks for ways to lose against good teams, especially on the road.

Not much needs to be said about the basrerunning except that Shelby and Samuel should be out of jobs right now. All of our baserunners just look lost out there (see Izturis).

The margin of error for the Orioles right now to win a game is very small because of the youth and inexperience of some of the main guys they are depending on. The middle of their lineup down to the bottom is very soft and the top of their lineup is inconsistent. We had one quality stick off the bench, Salazar, and he was let go and one young outfielder, Pie, who will never get any better sitting the bench. If he is not in their plans, why are they holding on to him? I do not like the way Trembley is using his players.

When the going gets tough, the Orioles get (more) stupid.

Tell me, where is it written down that you can't use your closer in a tie game? Bottom of the 9th, score tied, 4-5-6 coming up for the Yankees. I can't think of a better time to have your best pitcher in the game. I know, I know. "But then if we go ahead in the 10th, we don't have our closer." How about, let's get to that point first. Another reliever could probably handle their 7-8-9 hitters. When the game is on the line and their best hitters are coming to the plate with a chance to win the game, I want our best pitcher on the mound.

Alright people. Stop looking at everything with a microscope. I understand everyone is furious at these loses. I am too. I have been one of the most vocal fans against the O's disappointments on these blogs this season; however we did not lose a game we were supposed to win. We lost 2-1 to one of the top 3 teams in baseball right now. Relax for a second and give your team some credit.

Never thought the O's could sink to this depth. From lousy managing down to fundamental base running. Markakis may have hit a homerun, but basically to see a homerun from this team is a sight to behold. After all the blunders of last night, the Yankees were just waiting patiently for exactly what they knew was going to happen--and did. We had our chance. Yankee sweep on this series! Then--off to Boston.

Stop being O's haters and start being O's fans. The team is still rebuilding and is improving in the area where it is needed most... the pitching. In a couple more years this team will be contending. They did not try to claim that they will contend this year. The process takes time. just be patient and supportive and stop bashing your team.

Come on now, yes the base running has been terrible but how can anyone complain about the 2nd and 3rd situations last night. Bunt with runners on second and third and your $60 million RBI man up in Markakis with less than 2 outs? Pinch hit Oscar Salazar for Markakis? You guys can't be serious. Also with 2 outs, Roberts trying to score is the right move, that play was bang-bang and he forced the Yankees to have to do everything right to get him out, unfortunately they did. Am I right Pete?


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Pete's reply: Pretty much. The baserunning on the two doubles is fair game, though Reimold was not going to score anyway. Roberts did the right thing. Just a bang-bang play. He had to go for it in that situation.

There are worse things than losing a game on a walkoff home run by Hideki Matsui after some sketchy baserunning and suspect clutch hitting deprived the Orioles of a legitimate shot at opening the series at the new Yankee Stadium with an uplifting victory. I'm guessing, however, that you can't think of any right now.

No, those of us who still have a passion for this team can't think of anything worse. Since you're in the process of mailing the rest of the season in, why don't you let someone who still cares cover the team on a day to day basis because at this point, it seems you're only in it for the perks. Most. appropriate. last. name. ever.

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Pete's reply: I actually am mailing it in Des. I'm on the couch in a cast, but I'll try to do better for nice people like you. Say Hi to Des Sr. He seems to have brought you up well.

Hey "True O's Fan",

We're all true all fans here, we just happen to have different points of view. Being critical of your team is also being a true fan. Obviously everything is not all peachy when we invest so much in them financially and emotionally, and they keep losing.

On the game last night, I will agree with you, most people here in these posts are over-reacting.

Hey "True O's Fan", over-reacting? Yes, in some ways. But going 1-8 or 2-7 on this road trip, being 15-30 on the road and 13-20 in the division is pathetic even when you are in the midst of rebuilding. When you're 26-21 at home, it's simply unacceptable to be 15-30 on the road. Our play on the road has to change.

Slugger,

Point taken and understood but some of these comments go beyond being critical.

What, they don't have paragraphs in Essex?

Tough loss but still a great game last night. I think tonight will be our best chance to get a win in this series, I hope we see "the good" Rich Hill.

I just close my eyes when they play the Yankees...but I will say this - I have been impressed by the job Hendrickson has been doing from the pen. He has not packed it in and has helped stablize the long side of the pen...which we need with all the youth.

Brian Roberts needs to man up and take Phil Coke out on that play at the plate. He knocks the ball out of his hands by barrelling over him that is the play that could turn around the additude of the team. That what happened to the Red Sox when Varitek pushed ARod!. He had a chance to be the leader and say that we are coming at you and O'layed the plate like a second class player representing a second class team!

Hi Jerry,

I get it and I agree with you wholeheartedly. It is not acceptable to lose; however losing a game by 1 run on the bottom of the 9th in the Bronx to the best team in baseball right now, is nothing to be outraged about. You want to be outraged about the season? Yes, you should be. But let's not nitpick the plays from last night. I know there is no such thing as moral victories, but If they gave us that kind of effort we saw last night every game, we will be alright. We were one hit away from winning last night. It just didn't go our way.


I am tired of the mentality of losing due to low expectations. I think it's a self-fulfilling prophecy to think "ooh, we're playing the big, bad Yankees on the road, there's no way we can be expected to win one game in this series, let alone two or three. Ooh, big, bad Andy Pettite's starting tonight, we don't stand a chance. We're in the toughest division in baseball, no one can expect us to win any games against our division rivals. We're rebuilding; we can't be expected to win until (this calendar year + 2)."

I think it's possible to learn how to lose, which can happen when you have close games that you all-too-often find ways to lose.

I don't expect the Orioles to win the world series (yet) or even reach .500 this year, but I do expect them to play to their abilities.

There have been games this year lost due to baserunning blunders, fielding miscues, etc. That's what's frustrating.

Two aggressive base running plays that took great defensive plays to get outs. If either player stood on third every fan would have said they should have gone home. Get off DT's back. I'll take plays at the plate any day over left standing on third, especially late in the game in the Bronx. Enough whining about the base running. And as far as clutch bats late in the game, has anyone seen how many 8th and 9th inning comebacks we have over the last 3-4 weeks!

The title of this and every article for the O's should be...'Just another sad season'. I have been an O's supporter for a long time and have endured way to many losing seasons compared to the very few that were winning or at least above .500 as far as wins go. Regardless of what talent (or lack thereof) each article or blog tries to highlight or critique a player on the O's roster - the fact remains the same...they stink. Sure, we have some decent offensive and a couple defensive players that seem to have a pretty good 'up-side' to them as far as talent is rated. But the pitching is where it will always hurt the O's. The talent never seems ready for the big-leagues, or we get some washed up pitchers from other teams that have discarded them (for obvious reasons). I know we are still in a 're-building' process, but it has become hard to watch anymore. At least it is fun to root for the Phillies. Maybe the O's should ask to be moved to the National League. They seem to fair better. Maybe that is mis-leading as well. Oh well.

You're right Pete... This has the makings of a good old fashioned butt thumping. But as you eluded to, stranger things have happened. Let's hope they get reeeeeeal strange reeeeeeeeal quick.

Both Izturis and Reimold made their baserunning mistakes because they were running with the pitch and so were not able to follow where the ball was going in the air. Yet another reason not to use Trembley's favorite play, the hit and run.


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Pete's reply: Catch-22, Brian. If they don't run, they don't have any chance to score there and break the tie. I think that's what they have a third base coach for.

The Orioles are starting to remind me of another team of losers: the Washington Generals. remember those guys? They played the stooges for the Harlem Globetrotters and would lose every game and look hapless in the process. The difference is they were getting paid to lose. Our beloved O' s are supposed to know how to play the game and to give it their best.
The bothersome thing is that it is our vets who are not coming through. We have had good starting pitching recently; bringing up Tillman et al won't change that much. Our rookie hitting phenoms are walloping the ball at about a 250-260 pace. And our heavy hitters (?) are flailing at low outside pitches. Vets who should know better are making dumb base-running mistakes and fielding errors. I don't see any relief this year or next-- there isn't much help in the minors except for a few starting pitchers ( see comment above).

A few observations:
1) Any time it takes a perfect throw & tag to get a baserunner, the runner SHOULD be going. Even in the major leagues, perfection is seldom achieved, especially at BOTH ends of a play.
2) Markakis IS overanxious at the plate and has been getting himself out by not being selective enough. Until you have 2 strikes, there is NO excuse for swinging unless you get exactly the pitch you were expecting and in a location where you can really drive it. Otherwise, take the pitch even if it's a strike, and wait for another pitch where you want it.
3) Fox Sports yesterday opined that it's becoming obvious that Markakis will never be a 30 home run hitter. Maybe they should review Carl Yaztremski's record - he was in the majors six years before hitting more than 21 homers in a season. Markakis may yet become a real power hitter.

For the webmaster of the blog:

The reason you keep getting duplicate posts is that something is wrong with the site, and it takes upwards of 30-45 seconds for an entry to upload. So most bloggers think that something went wrong and they hit the "post" button again.

Please fix this. The School of Roch's works just fine and a lot of bloggers compare.

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Pete's reply: We're trying to figure it out. Sorry for the inconvenience.

Only Sith Lords and FoxSports anchors (same thing I guess) speak in absolutes. I think Markakis is suffering from the same malady that affects every gifted baseball player who cares about his team when it is doing poorly--the desire to do too much. You can't force hits. You can't hit a five-run homer. You press, you pop up. It's Trembley's job as manager to try and keep everyone relaxed, not to press, not to panic, not to let that domino effect take place with losses that turn into another Aug-Sept 3-32 swoon. We have a lot of talent here. We just got burned last night. Maybe Roberts was safe, we didn't get the call. We will get better. You can't keep drafting high and not see good results, just ask Tampa Bay. What we do need is an Eddie Murray. We haven't had an Eddie Murray since...Eddie Murray. Of course, the last time we tried to get an Eddie Murray, his name was Glenn Davis and we know how well THAT turned out. Still, what batter strikes fear into the opposition's hearts when the game in on the line? Aubrey Huff? Sorry, Huff ain't no Eddie Murray. Adams Jones may one day BE an Eddie Murray, but not yet.

Sad story. When I found out MASN was televising the Orioles in Hi Def this year, I went out and bought a HD TV.
They look as pitiful in vivid color as they do in low def.
Might be time to look for a manager that can put his foot up someones rear. This team clearly is very comfortable with losing.

Gary,

Good point about Hendrickson. While I'm not a big fan of the guy, he had kept quiet about his "demotion" (he knew the plan when he signed) from a starting role and done a nice job out of the bullpen. That has been a pleasant surprise in (another) season full of blunders.


I'm going to submit my resume for the soon-to-be job post on Orioles.com for their new baserunning coach.

Reimold and Izturis, because they were in motion on the pitch, each could have scored on the drives to right field. They have to pick up the third base coach on that play. If the third base coach doesn't have enough of an angle on the ball then the first base coach should be wildly signaling to him to go go go. NO EXCUSES in either case. Not sure if they've been coached up well enough or not, but i've never seen a third base coach (Samuel) have such a mid season transformation from gambler to ultra conservative.
Great job by Hendrickson and by Hernandez. Heck, Johnson seemed to be throwing it great too, Matsui hit a decent pitch, just not in quite far enough.

To the blogger aliased with "Fundamental Illness",

I feel the exact way you feel. We should be able to beat the Yankees, Redsox, Angels ... you name it. And we are capable of doing it. We have played some of the best games in O's history against our division foes. The team puts 100% every time they play those teams. I don't think they go out there thinking they going to loose.

Pile it on the O's as you may, for they deserve it this season. But if you're going to pick a game to pile it on them, let it not be the game last night.

No one expected the rookie Hernandez to pitch a gem. No one thought they would hit Pettitte the way they did, but they did it.

Give credit to the Yankees for some good play at the plate. That was the difference in the game. It was just one game, and a bad one to use by some fans here as a microcosm of the season.

This was not the same as loosing 6-5 after leading 5-1 to the Redsox. I know it's frustration of many losses piling up, but a lot fans in this blog lose credibility when they start to blame the O's for last night games.

What happened last night, was called baseball. No one here would question last night's game if we were in first place. If you want to use this page to talk about a miserable season, be my guest, but don't use last night's game as a supporting argument, because it does not have enough merit.

Well said Slugger.

I turned the game off when we didn't score in the top of the ninth. I knew the Yankees would win. The O's have talent-they just don't believe in themselves and they sure don't know how to win.

The O's are weak in fundamentals and years of losng have enveloped the players such that the entire team has a losers attitude. They are what THEY think they are-losers!

What does the insanity metaphor say about someone who whines about the same things over and over?

The Marlins are a great example though. They traded their big pieces for a lot of new younger pieces. Umm, didn't we trade Tejada and Bedard for a lot of quality young players? The Marlins grew a ton of talent and bought a couple pieces when it was time to win. That sounds like a familiar plan in Baltimore. The O's dumped all their young talent to get the guys they did in the 90's. I mean the O's farm system was strip mined and never really re-stocked. The Marlins spent 4 years developing (and keeping) their prospects. When you look at the O's, any prospect worth mentioning has only been here about 2 years. Florida was 67-76 in 95, two years before they won their first World Series. They didn't just wake up and win 50 games in a row. Quit expecting this team to hit some invisible switch where they skip the growing pains everyone else you want to mention went through.

OK, no one hates losing to the Yanks more than me. As a kid who grew up in NJ around nothing but Yankee fans, it still pains me to watch a tough Oriole loss. But to be clear, this game was a lot different than the ones in May where the Orioles didn't belong in the same league, much less the same division as the Yankees. Until the last pitch of the game, the Orioles outplayed the Yankees. Outhit. Outpitched. Outdefended. OK, maybe not outbaseran. Not to be in the business of moral victories, but let's review: after our 25-year homegrown leftfielder hit a HR in the first, our 24-yr old rookie starter went toe-to-toe with their 37-year old veteran that has been the Orioles arch nemesis for 15 years. Finally, after some bang-bang plays at the plate for the O's, the Yankees busted through on a HR by their 35-year old DH, the first road HR ever given up by our 26-year old back of the pen up-and-comer (yes, he's been struggling, but he'll be back). The Yankees will no doubt replace that aging talent with more obnoxious contracts, but let it be noted: Youth is served in Baltimore--and the best arms haven't even shown up yet! I believe Bergesson's season turned around when he shut down the Yankees in the middle innings of a start in May as it gave him a lot of confidence (if I can shut down the Yanks, I can shut down anyone). I think this game could do the same for Hernandez.

Oh, and I'm still waiting for someone to give Trembley credit on sending Izturis on the Roberts double. The execution was flawed, but the strategy should've won the game as I do believe Izturis would scored given a converted 3B out in RF and Izturis' speed. Suddenly, with a lead, it's Sherrill in the 9th for the save instead of overextending JJ.

Lets call them by their real name.......The Stankees

Pete i am a little confused.Your reply to one of the posters in regards to Johnson, was that he might be a little tired. Tired from what pete, he doesn't pitch that often.

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Pete's reply: There was a period before the break when I think he was fatigued. Remember, they get up in the bullpen a lot more than they come into the game.

Pete,How would you fix this problem we're having running the bases?Seriously.If you were the mgr.what would you do?This has been going on for so long.I'm sure DT has addressed this with the team,however since it continues do you think DT has lost control of his team?Let me know what you think.Thanks.


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Pete's reply: I don't know if you can fix the veterans, and it has really been more of a problem with them. I suppose I would be more heavy-handed after real mistakes. It's not an easy question.

The Orioles suck

0 for 8 w/ RISP last night. Two inept at-bats with a runner on third and one out (Izturis whiffs on a dirtball, Markakis whacks at the first pitch from a new reliever rather than taking a pitch or two to gauge what he has.) Poor plate discipline and overaggressiveness, as we've seen for years.

And the usual elementary school gym class baserunning. And Trembley claims Izturis wouldn't have scored on that play, even if he doesn't mess up - what was Dave watching?

Orioles' road motto - "We're the A.L.'s favorite visiting team. We'll do whatever it takes to lose."

O's could/should be 4-0 since the break, but are 1-3 due to poor hitting w/ RISP, pitchers allowing free baserunners to score, and bad baserunning and fielding. The first half, and previous seasons, revisited,

It's hard to blame Juan Samuel when Izturis doesn't look at him. Just sayin'. Much as I am a fan, I really hope the O's don't play close to .500 ball in the second half. Trembley needs to go. I know we can't change managers every two years forever, but the problem is we hired a minor league manager and he needs to go. I am ready to stop the manager carousel once Trembley is fired.

Pete what is everyone so bent out of shape about? We are who we thought we were!!!!!!!

This team can not win games for the life of them. Back in 1997 when we would play sloppy ball, we would still win roughly 60-70% of those games because, well, we were just a dominant team with a winning mentality. We stepped on the opposition's neck while they were down bleeding. Now we are just an MLB pinata getting stooled on practically daily, and win about 5% of the games we shouldn't win. We do not know how to win but if there is a God we will get there eventually. Until then, there is no use in crying about it.


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Pete's reply: Jim Palmer was right. They don't know how to win. But the Tampa Bay Rays didn't know how to win until they won. Same for the Angels a while back. The light will go on if there is enough good pitching, a few big bats and a lot of fundamentally sound players.

True O's fan-
That's Yankees. Don't hate on other teams because the Orioles have not been good for 12 years.

Want to give your readers a "heads up" on the article about Steve Dalkowski, former Oriole prospect who Earl Weaver and Ted Williams say was the hardest thrower ever, in today's Sun. Reading it, I thought "darn this is well written." I checked the byline and it was Ron Shelton of "Bull Durham" fame. Was hoping it was another steller columnist to stand with Peter on the Sun staff.

Very interesting


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Pete's reply: Thanks for the reminder. John Eisenberg wrote a great piece on him a few years ago, too.

Here's the link: http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/orioles/bal-sp.dalkowski21jul21,0,1956057.story

I hate the Stankees cause their the Stankees. Not because the O's havent had a winning season in 12 years.......sniffle, sniffle. The O's will be a winning team again one day.

Tough loss.

But to be realistic, we probably shouldn't be winning right now anyway. We don't have the starting pitching right now to consistently win. Can't wait to see what Tilman, Arrieta, and Matusz (and maybe Patton) can do. Hopefully the FO will figure out a way to make us stronger for the future over the next few days.

As to the baserunning, I don't want DT to react in the media. I want him to demonstrate that playing/coaching the wrong way will have consequences. If he can't get this established over the next few weeks, then we should be looking for new field leadership for next year.

Shaun: Thanks for your insightful and well thought out addition to the discourse. By the way, your village called. Their idiot is missing.

The willingness to accept losing is a huge problem here. I'm still holding out hope for a turn-around next year but there are as many troublesome occurances this year as positive ones. (the bats aren't as good as we thought or hoped they be pretty much across the board, Hill and Pie are as bad as we hoped they wouldn't be, the bullpen isn't as set as we would have hoped, and that sh!tY$ losing attitude is still there.) On the positive most of the big time prospects have stayed healthy and are performing well. Bergeson, Riemold Hernandez, Wieters are here and should fine, the big 3 are healthy and right on track.
Remember the 88' to 89' turnaround. Those rosters didn't really change all that much. You had the rookie closer and 3rd baseman that played really well, and a couple of young outfielders named Finley and Anderson, but that was a young team that had gotten killed the year before. The major difference and the reason that isn't likely to happen to this current O's team? Leadership.
Let's see, Frank Robinson...or Dave Trembley.....Dave Trembley or Frank Robinson? I don't know.

There have been some base running blunders for sure, but every time somebody gets thrown out -- or doesn't score -- doesn't necessarily make for a blunder. Izturis getting thrown out at the plate was just a very good play by all concerned, including the runner. Roberts took a calculated risk -- but if everybody broke immediately every time the ball bounced a few feet away from the catcher, we'd really be screaming. And judging by the reaction of the announcers who called the play, nobody knew Roberts' ball would not be caught until it hit the wall, making it unlikely Izturis could've scored, especially after being "deked" into sliding, for which the Yankees have to be credited. Bottom line if Izturis had scored on Markakis' grounder and Roberts on a wild pitch, we'd be talking about aggressive base running, not blunders. The O's have lost some games because of bad base running this year. Last night was not one of them.

P.S. You might be able to teach a player to anticipate situations, but you can't coach better reactions or instincets. You either have them or you don't. The O's have players who fit both categories.

No matter the outcome of last nights game, we saw another rookie pitcher who will be invaluable to this team for years to come. The kid was outstanding. Pitching in a situation like that, Yankee stadium, O's not getting any runs for him. He was marvelous. As fans, we've got a lot to cheer about. Last night, in that pressure cooker, the man started a rookie battery an a rookie left fielder. The man does have "BAYTSIM".

If you are on third base and the ball is hit to the first baseman or third baseman you stay on third. when izturis was running home it looked as if he spent
sometime watching the first baseman
instead of running hard to home plate. i
don't believe roberts could have scored if he had to slide through the picther. coke looked to be a lot bigger than roberts. johnson should have only pitched the eight inning. albers, bass, and baez were in the pen well rested.
trembley had options

In response to James C.,who I don't know,but who's comment was obviously directed at me,you need to get your facts straight before opening that piehole you call a mouth.I never whine,I just point out different instances of the same types of mistakes that have not only occured but gotten worse over the last 2 years.Whining over thesame things would mean I would still be talking about the Boston Massacre of two years ago or The 5-1 game that Bergeson was losing and Trembley pulled him from .I know people of limited intelligence can't understand those subtleties,but I find it interesting that way more people seem to agre with my opinion than yours.I would love to match wits with you but you're only half -armed.

True O's fan- Are you related to Peter (Angelos)?

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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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