• Jul

    Interesting night for Cabrera

    What an interesting night at Yankees Stadium, huh?

    Everyone's favorite target Daniel Cabrera certainly had an interesting night. First he shuts out the Yankees for five innings before A-Rod takes him deep in the sixth. After cruising through the seventh, Cabrera, who was working fast and throwing strikes (63-103 pitches), gave up a lead off double Bobby Abreu to bring up A-rod up again.

    Unfortunately for Cabrera, minor league umpire Chad Fairchild was filling in behind the plate for the vacationing major league umpire and after Cabrera hit A-Rod on his first pitch, the rookie ump immediately ejected him. Even though there was an open base and A-Rod had already hit home run in the game, there's no reason for Cabrera to throw at A-rod with a 6-1 lead in the 8th and no outs.

    This brings up an interesting question. Why in the heck do major league umpires need vacations in the middle of the baseball season? Last I checked, even if they do post season games, umpires are off for at least four months and their salaries range from approximately $84,000 to $300,000 per year for eight months of work. I'm just guessing here, but I think they can afford a winter vacation to sunny Aruba and don't really need that summer vacation in Ocean City in the middle of the season.

    So word is that there's little to no interest in Aubrey Huff from contending teams. Yeah, I can see how no one could use a guy who's now batting .302 with 22 home runs and has had multiple hits in seven of his last eight games. Huff is due $8 million in 2009 and will be 32 years old. There's a good chance he will decline off of his outstanding numbers this season, but it's doubtful he won't still have value next year.

    So what's the problem? The problem is that the current contenders don't have a need for a first baseman or DH, and really there's no need for a third baseman either even though most teams apparently don't look at Huff as a third baseman.

    Unless an injury occurs with a contender, the Orioles will most likely end up keeping Huff through the season. However, I expect that he will pass through waivers so there's still a chance to move him if an injury occurs sometime in August.

    Worried about Orioles first rounder Brian Matusz signing? Don't. It's simple really. Washington Nationals draft pick and 9th over pick Aaron Crow is holding out for more than slot so his situation is screwing things up for Matusz and the Orioles. Matusz will sign with the Orioles but he's not going to sign and then see Washington cave in and meet Crow's demands.

    Unfortunately, all it takes is one or more idiot agents to screw all the rest of the deals up. I just wish that baseball would go into a hard slotting system for at least the 1st 15 picks of the 1st round.

    Unfortunately this is what it is, but the Orioles will sign Matusz. Unfortunately, the situation is costing Matusz some valuable professional innings and could delay his progression to the Orioles by at least a half year unless he's lights out with a Wieters-like progression next year.

    My guess is that Matusz signs but ends up making a professional debut in the Arizona Fall League like Jake Arrieta did last season.

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Tony Pente

Tony has owned and operated Orioles Hangout since 1996 and is well known for his knowledge of the Baltimore Orioles organization from top to bottom. He's a frequent guest on Baltimore-area sports radio stations and can be heard regularly on the 105.7 FM The Fan. His knowledge and contacts within the Orioles minor league system and the major league baseball scouting industry is unparalleled in the Baltimore media and is known as an expert on the Orioles prospects.