News and Articles
  • Nov

    Good News This Offseason

    Written by frobby

    While the O's haven't made any significant roster moves yet (nor would I have expected them to at this stage), there's been a lot of good, encouraging news in Oriole-land if you know where to look.

    Wallace and Chiti selected to coach pitching staff. Of course, you can't know in advance whether Wallace and Chiti will get better results than Adair and Castro, but I still consider this news to be good and encouraging, for several reasons. One, it was apparent during the selection process that the O's had a very good group of candidates to choose from. Second, they moved quickly and decisively. Third, Dan and Buck seem genuinely thrilled with their choices. You always are going to hear the GM and the manager say nice things when they make a new hire, but the praise here was genuinely effusive. I think Dan and Buck are tickled pink. And finally, it's pretty clear that Wallace and Chiti will be on the same page. It's still true that there is no guarantee these guys will get more out of our staff than the coaches they replaced, but I'm optimistic and I do think we have several pitchers who might flourish given a different set of coaches to advise them.

    Manto and Anderson selected as minor league hitting and infielding coordinators. Again, these look like very good hires. I loved this quote from Manto: "Often times there is a buzz in baseball about what team and organization is on the rise and without question the buzz has certainly been the Orioles. To get an opportunity to join the Orioles is exciting for me." I really think the O's have done a good job with their MiL coaching hires the last few years. Manto's predecessor, Boulanger seems to have done a solid job and I'm hoping Manto can build on it.

    No sacred cows. The fact that the O's have discussed the possibility of trading Hardy, Wieters and Markakis is great news -- not because I feel we must trade any of them, but because the O's are showing flexibility in their thinking, and not taking any options off the table. It seems like Dan and Buck are ready to improve this team no matter what fan favorite it might affect, which is how it should be.

    It's Dan's front office and he'll do what he wants to. I've got nothing against Dave Stockstill, but the fact that he was let go shows that Dan has free reign over the front office now. Finally, a GM who can run his organization as he sees fit.

    Chris Davis wants to stay here. "Jill and I, every time we go out, we see somebody and they are very complimentary. They are good people and there is a lot to be said for that," Davis said. "I know it was tough to be a fan here for a long time. I hope the last couple of years have restored the faith of the fan base and given them something to cheer about. I can't think of a better place to hit for the rest of my career. I have had so many good memories here in two years, I'd love to extend that for a number of years." I don't think that's ambiguous. Obviously, it's still about the money, but I definitely think Crush wants to stay.

    Silver, Gold and Platinum. Three Silver Sluggers, three Gold Gloves (six nominees), and the Platinum Glove winner, a 21-year old phenom. And, third place MVP and two others in the top 13. Was it really 2010 when Ty Wigginton was our All-Star representative?

    Ferreira signs Dominican phenom with lightning speed. I don't know if everyone saw this over on the minor league board, but this week there was a story about how Fred Ferreira saw 16-year old Olelky Peralta throw for three innings, got on the phone with Dan Duquette, and signed Peralta for $325,000 on the spot. Kid is 6'5", sits 93-95 mph and can touch 97. And he's 16! So glad to see the O's moving aggressively on this front.

    Surprise! O's shine in the AFL. The O's-laden Surprise Segauros coached by Gary Kendall, won the AFL championship, with great contributions from Henry Urrutia(.985 OPS), Michael Ohlman (1.250 OPS), and Tim Berry (1.84 ERA). Eduardo Rodriguez pitched three shutout innings in the championship game, and though his AFL stats weren't overwhelming, he made a great impression on some scouts. Have a look at this article and be sure to watch the accompanying video:

    So yeah, I'm pleased with all this news. I feel like the culture that Dan and Buck have built is light-years away from what existed before they arrive, and it's all to the good. There's still a ton of work to do to build on this foundation, but I'm impressed with how far they have come.

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