• Jul

    Finding the silver lining has become nearly impossible

    I think guys like Stotle, Frobby and allstar1979 said it all in this thread about MacPhail’s lack of desire to be in the International market.  The only thing I would add is something I was told during my interviews last year prior to my McPhail piece. Someone very close to the situation told me point blank that Angelos does not want to invest in the DR. He saw it as ridiculous to throw away money on these raw players. For years this organization had a $20,000 bonus cap for signing Dominican players and Carlos Bernhardt was the only scout they employed in the DR although David Stockstill has gone down for years as well.

    I don't doubt for a second that MacPhail's answers are not his own philosophy, but they certainly agree with Angelos'. At the end of the day the organizational philosophies start at the top. Although MacPhail was given more leeway to do things that really no other GM under Angelos has been able to do, let's not forget who ultimately calls the shots.

    MacPhail is a throwback to the 80's type GMs. His philosophy to not shakeup the baseball establishment with big contracts is well documented and he's the perfect GM for an organization more concerned about the bottom line then winning. Angelos once was the kind of owner who wouldn't be outbid for a player he wanted (Belle) and he was willing to spend what it took to put a winner on the field. Unfortunately, the underlying issues that came with that including the nepotism, slow pace of operations in just about every aspect of running an organization, and lack of accountability has led to the 14 years of poor baseball.

    MacPhail is not incompetent nor does he not care, but he doesn't have the energy or bold leadership needed to steer this organization into a successful team within the AL East. Unfortunately, unless Angelos changes his ways or sells the team, I don't really see them ever hiring someone who would have that bold leadership.

    Thoughout the last 14 years I've never been hopeless. I always tried to find some type of silver lining in the stormy O's organization, but I've finally concluded that we don't have much hope in becoming a factor in the AL East any time soon. Even with all the great things Tampa has done as an organization, they are still six games back with the Yankees and Red Sox 19 and 20 games over .500 at the All-star break.

    The Orioles won't even compete for international free agents because they don't think the risk is worth the reward. How are they ever going to compete on a year in and year out basis again with a Red $ox and Yankee$ when they are not better than them in any phase of baseball operations?

    MacPhail said he wanted to emulate the Tampa model but it took a down year for Yankees and Red Sox for them to make into the playoffs and all they did is go back out and retooled.

    Baseball has become a joke when it comes to having an even playing field, but my real fear is even if it was a level playing field, the Orioles wouldn't do enough to be good in that environment as well.

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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.