Archive for the ‘Spring Training’ Category

Brian Matusz is Good at Baseball

March 5, 2010

Rosentweet

The above was posted on Twitter by Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports (and formerly of the Baltimore Sun) this morning after Matusz made his 2010 debut yesterday afternoon.

Matusz struck out four in an inning and 1/3 (that’s all four outs for those of you keeping score at home), but allowed a home run on his final pitch. Of his 36 pitches, 28 were strikes. If you’re thinking “36 pitches is a lot for 1.1 innings,” you’d be right, but there is a caveat. Thirteen of those pitches were against Evan Longoria (no slouch), and Matusz’s comments later reflected that the pitcher seemed to be simply taking full advantage of the opportunity to get in some extra work against one of the best hitters in MLB. Brian admitted that he would have done things differently in a “real” game.

From Roch Kubatko at MASN:


I think in a different situation I might have mixed in a breaking ball or something like that. It probably would have been different in the regular season, but I continued to pound it hard with the fastball in and he was able to keep fouling, keep fouling, and I didn’t want to go off that path because he wasn’t able to get extended on it and I wanted to continue working on throwing fastballs in.

Spring Training= Glorified Batting Practice

March 4, 2010

Yes that’s right, the O’s have officially started playing exhibition games – basically,  facing prospects other than their own in games that mean practically nothing. A few Orioles young’uns treated the 12-2 whooping of the Tampa Bay Ray’s as exactly what it was— a glorified batting practice.

If chicks dig the long ball, yesterday was the game to watch because the O’s went deep six times.Two O’s will be picking up the majority of early spring break college chicks visiting Florida – Josh Bell and Rhyne Hughes. Bell and Hughes each homered twice yesterday in the batting practice session.

Also going “Smith” (get it? since they aren’t playing in Camden Yards yet…), were Scott Moore and a man who somehow escaped the FBI Terrorist Watch List, Nick Markakis.

Former O’s ace Jeremy Guthrie tossed himself two scoreless innings before turning over the patting practice throwing duties to Cla Meredith, David Hernandez and my new favorite Oriole, Willie Ohman. (I need to get his jersey ASAP).

This afternoon, perhaps the Orioles’ brightest hope for the future, LHP Brian Matusz, will take the hill and face the Rays again. Matusz is one of many reasons to be excited about baseball season this year and is ranked 5th on MLB.com’s Top 50 Prospects for 2010.

Terrell Suggs Could Learn From Brian Roberts' Offseason

February 26, 2010

Roberts Suggs

A lot of talk coming from Sarasota this week is about the health of some of the Orioles brightest stars, including Brian Roberts and Brad Bergesen. It appears that Brian Roberts is learning from another Charm City Superstar, T-Sizzle, about how awesome it is to sit out early-season practices. Like Terrell Suggs, Brian Roberts’ only real use for Spring Training/Training Camp is to knock a little rust off the wheels – both players have no doubt that they will be on the roster come the first game of the season.

Luckily for Roberts, he gets a free vacation out of the deal, while Suggs has to sit in 150 degree weather in Westminster, counting down the days until training camp ends or he dies from heat stroke – whichever comes first.  There are notes Terrell should take from Brian Roberts to improve his life in many ways – both personally and professionally.

During this 2009 season, Mr. Suggs had a very costly run in with his Baby Momma, resulting in a final price tag of $35,000 per month in Child Support. It remains to be seen whether Sizzle’s lady friend was deserving of a little bleach bath over a fight about tickets to a Steelers/Ravens game (hopefully Sizzle reacted when she tried to give Hines Ward’s Side-Piece or some Harrah’s hotel waitress tickets to the game), but the bottom line is that he could have faced suspension and a fine from the league had the charges not been dropped.

TerrellSuggs

Brian Roberts, on the other hand, is married to this hot trophy wife whom I’d happily pay $35,000 per month to hang out with:

All Mr. Roberts had to do this offseason was hang out with Mrs. Roberts. I’m sure they got pretty bored since her job is to look hot and he just has to go to the batting cages once in a while. I think it’s pretty safe to say that a lot of boning went on in the offseason and it just might happen that Brian threw out his back- Wouldn’t you!?!?!?!?!? The Orioles Obama of Baseball Operations, Andy McPhail has been quoted saying :

“As long as the symptoms keep improving, which they have with Brian, there really isn’t anything for us to be alarmed about. We have a lot of time. We have six weeks. The position players aren’t the same as pitchers in terms of getting ready, so there really isn’t any concern amongst our group.”

To me, this quote means, “if we keep Mrs. Brian Roberts away from camp at Sarasota, his back will heal properly.” I don’t know about you but six weeks seems like a lot of punishment for doing a good job in the boom boom room. B-Rob’s back may heal but what will happen with him mentally? He may go crazy enough that he’ll give the Mrs. a nice bleach bath if she rejects him for the “headache” excuse.

All we can do here in Bird Land is hope that B-Rob can enjoy some sunflower seeds and Gatorade  from the bench and just let his back heal naturally; a.k.a. no boning! Hopefully he is a nice feller to his lady (unlike Sizzle) and treats her with respect. It may lead to more back injuries but at least Mrs. Roberts will be a good egg to her husband and Brian won’t run the risk of suspension, fines and jail time. So if you’re reading Sizzle (which would be pretty freaking awesome) take a few notes from Brian Roberts on how to treat a lady nice and just reap the rewards my friend.

The Orioles Do What Most Birds Do…. Migrate South

February 18, 2010

O's Spring Training

Everyone knows Mother Nature has been giving Baltimore a pounding worse than the one the Sloviakan women’s hockey team took in the Olympics. Many orange and black realists are hoping the O’s can pull off a season that leaves them with at least as many wins as inches of snow that hit Charm City this winter.

Wednesday was the 1st day of baseball season, as pitchers and catchers reported to sunny Sarasota, Florida to begin preparations for their 2010 AL-East campaign.

Not only will the Orioles have some new faces in the locker room, they will have a whole new locker room. 2010 marks the first season the Orioles will be catching a spring suntan in Sarasota at Ed Smith Stadium rather than in Fort Lauderdale. After announcing last July that the team would be leaving their spring training facilities that they called home for the past 14 years, the Orioles have moved 214 miles to the other side of the state (which resembles America’s Turtle Head).

Speaking of new faces in the locker room, as part of the preparations for the start of the season on April 6th, B-More Birds Nest will provide you a rundown of the what’s what for your 2010 Baltimore Orioles.

Here is all the information you’ll need to know about the pitching and catching B’More-“virgins” of 2010.

Kevin Millwood RHP 6’4″  230 lbs.

Mr. Millwood was brought to Birdland via an offseason trade that sent once promising closer Chris Ray to the Rangers. Millwood, who reached the majors in 1997 with the Atlanta Braves, has a career record of 155-121 with an ERA of 4.02. Kevin also has spent time with the Phillies and Indians. Millwood will serve as anchor and old wise leader for the rest of the staff. Hopefully he learned something from his mentors at the start of his career…you may have heard of them—I believe their last names were Smoltz, Avery, and Glavine.

Mike Gonzalez LHP 6’2″ 215 lbs.

After undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2008 Mike Gonzalez had a successful 2009 campaign with 90 strikeouts and 10 saves in 74 1/3 innings. Gonzalez and his 2.42 ERA departed Atlanta to join the Birds. He will be used in the stopper role this year and people in Baltimore will definitely be talking about his strange delivery to the plate.

Part of the reason he might have a decent ERA is because he puts batters to sleep with his boring delivery. Known as “The Cobra” by his peers, his rocking back and forth looks like he is hypnotizing opposing hitters.

With the speed of the game always being criticized, Gonzalez does his best to keep the fans in the stadium as long as possible after the 7th inning stretch( a.k.a. “Beer Cut-off Time”). Mike Gonzalez might not be in the role to get many saves this year, but I’m sure he will save a few people a DUI.

Will Ohman LHP 6’2″ 210lbs

This guys last name is hopefully something we won’t be uttering as he jogs out of the bullpen this season. I’m sure blind Orioles fan’s at Camden Yards have thought “Oh, man” has been playing for our team for the past 14 years.

Willie comes to Baltimore after recently playing for the Dodgers in 09. After only appearing in 21 games in MannyWood, he spent the final four months of the season on the disabled list. A former Tommy John surgery patient himself, Ohman is a familiar face riding the pine.

Rather than bore you with more breakdowns of all the players reporting to spring training, I’ll just list some of the non-roster additions who get to come play with the big boys. They are:

LHP’s Chris George and Mike Hinckley, and RHP’s Jake Arrieta, Armando Gabino, Frank Mata, Josh Perrault, Dennis Sarfate, Alfredo Simon, and Ross Wolf.

The Orioles will also have catchers Adam Donachie, Louis Bernardo, Michael Hernandez, Caleb Miller, and Chad Moeller at camp. Here in Baltimore, we don’t really have to worry about catchers for the next few years until Matt Wieters’ contract expires and we bid him farewell!

Please stay close to the Nest for all of the latest Orioles information and comment. I promise none of my future posts will suck this bad but I hope you enjoyed witnessing me lose my blogging virginity.


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