Monthly Archives: January 2010

Updated: Position Players Appear Set for 2010

Video Update:

Now that the Orioles have agreed to a one year deal to bring back Miguel Tejada, the position players appear to be set for the upcoming season. While it is hard to despise the Orioles offseason so far I will say I am not as impressed as some. Targetting Garrett Atkins to be your first baseman seems almost laughable, especially when you consider that better players could have been had for comparable money (Adam Laroche signed a one year deal worth 5 million, and Troy Glaus a deal worth only 2 million).  Atkins is coming off the worst season of his career by far, continuing a downward trend that began in 2007 (Atkins OPS the last 4 years: .965, .853, .780, .650). Signing a very questionable bat to what appears to be an overpriced contract to play first base does not seem logical. To me, it would seem like Atkins could rebound to the point of having an average bat at third, but when he moves across the diamond he has to hit a lot more to be an average first baseman. I was indifferent on the move when I thought Atkins was going to be the third baseman, now I hate it. Hopefully they saw something they can fix easily and I will be eating these words once the season is underway. I just think that it is very likely he is an absolute disaster.

With the latest addition, the other corner infield spot has been filled. Many other fans appear to be excited about the move to bring back Tejada, not so much for me. First understand, I like Miguel Tejada and enjoyed his previous tenure here in Baltimore. I just don’t understand the moves the Orioles have made to fill out the corners. For me, the best move would have been to just let Luke Scott play first base and Atkins play third. That would have left ample playing time for all of Scott, Reimold, and Pie who are likely more valuable players than Atkins or Tejada. Tejada skill are eroding rapidly. The most important skills as a hitter, patience and power, have completely left his game. He now relies exclusively on hitting for a high average to remain a productive player. In addition, he is going to be 36 years old and is moving to a defensive position he has never played. To me that does not sound like a recipe for success. It is likely that Tejada is an average third baseman next year, but I see plenty of downside here too. Both corner infield positions could easily end up a disaster, or perhaps even an epic fail. While he is obviously a shell of the player he once was I still expect him to be batting cleanup come opening day in a very typical Oriole move. The good news for all Orioles fans is that you can bring out your old Tejada jerseys, it will be interesting to see if people tape over the number of their T-shirt jerseys and write on his new number as we so frequently see done with names.

In finality, I am mildly excited about the lineup and expect it to be a tick better than last year, mostly based on the growth of our young position players. I do also expect that the corners will be an improvement in comparison with last year, but that isn’t saying much. It is hard to be too mad about the lineup though since I understand that all we were looking for were warm bodies to man the corners while we wait for our in house prospects. For good or for bad, this team is banking on Josh Bell and Brandon Snyder to become productive players at the corners, and I can’t really argue with that. A team in our market, with our financial restrictions should be building from within whenever possible.

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Video: ESH @ Fan Fest

Some Fan Fest shenanigans! (I swear to God, I’ll pistol whip the next guy that says ‘shenanigans!’)

Easy bonus points if you guess who’s calling Bingo. If you don’t know, shame on you.

More to come this week, so check back frequently.

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First Fanfest Video

This is a short one but it proves we were actually there.  Told ya, mom!

It’s also a bit of a test to make sure we got the best encoding settings for the video and all that technical stuff down.  Vimeo is pretty sweet.  The player just looks a lot cleaner than youtube.

Anyway, the video below features Jjaks pointing out an oddity with the board.  Keep checking back all this week for more videos.  We’ll post them after they are edited up!

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Position players appear set for 2010

Now that the Orioles have agreed to a one year deal to bring back Miguel Tejada, the position players appear to be set for the upcoming season. While it is hard to despise the Orioles offseason so far I will say I am not as impressed as some. Targetting Garrett Atkins to be your first baseman seems almost laughable, especially when you consider that better players could have been had for comparable money (Adam Laroche signed a one year deal worth 5 million, and Troy Glaus a deal worth only 2 million).  Atkins is coming off the worst season of his career by far, continuing a downward trend that began in 2007 (Atkins OPS the last 4 years: .965, .853, .780, .650). Signing a very questionable bat to what appears to be an overpriced contract to play first base does not seem logical. To me, it would seem like Atkins could rebound to the point of having an average bat at third, but when he moves across the diamond he has to hit a lot more to be an average first baseman. I was indifferent on the move when I thought Atkins was going to be the third baseman, now I hate it. Hopefully they saw something they can fix easily and I will be eating these words once the season is underway. I just think that it is very likely he is an absolute disaster.

With the latest addition, the other corner infield spot has been filled. Many other fans appear to be excited about the move to bring back Tejada, not so much for me. First understand, I like Miguel Tejada and enjoyed his previous tenure here in Baltimore. I just don’t understand the moves the Orioles have made to fill out the corners. For me, the best move would have been to just let Luke Scott play first base and Atkins play third. That would have left ample playing time for all of Scott, Reimold, and Pie who are likely more valuable players than Atkins or Tejada. Tejada skill are eroding rapidly. The most important skills as a hitter, patience and power, have completely left his game. He now relies exclusively on hitting for a high average to remain a productive player. In addition, he is going to be 36 years old and is moving to a defensive position he has never played. To me that does not sound like a recipe for success. It is likely that Tejada is an average third baseman next year, but I see plenty of downside here too. Both corner infield positions could easily end up a disaster, or perhaps even an epic fail. While he is obviously a shell of the player he once was I still expect him to be batting cleanup come opening day in a very typical Oriole move. The good news for all Orioles fans is that you can bring out your old Tejada jerseys, it will be interesting to see if people tape over the number of their T-shirt jerseys and write on his new number as we so frequently see done with names.

In finality, I am mildly excited about the lineup and expect it to be a tick better than last year, mostly based on the growth of our young position players. I do also expect that the corners will be an improvement in comparison with last year, but that isn’t saying much. It is hard to be too mad about the lineup though since I understand that all we were looking for were warm bodies to man the corners while we wait for our in house prospects. For good or for bad, this team is banking on Josh Bell and Brandon Snyder to become productive players at the corners, and I can’t really argue with that. A team in our market, with our financial restrictions should be building from within whenever possible.

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Fan Fest!

Keep an eye out for us tomorrow.

Party with us!

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The Campaign is Gaining Momentum

If you all are like me and Tom, you really can’t stand Jtrea over at the OH.

As I mentioned a few posts ago, there was a campaign put forth to the head honcho’s at OH, Tony and Scottie, to ban him from the board.  Let me start by posting something that most people may have missed yesterday:

Lint06 – Perhaps I’m wrong, but I grow more convinced with each passing Trea conspiracy/crackpot suggestion, that his beliefs are driven by a lack of actual viewing of Os games. I am suggesting that because Trea doesn’t watch the Os on a regular basis, that the lens through which he sees the Orioles is text and sports clips, and that that kind of viewing lends itself to a fragmented understanding of the Orioles and their players/coaches. Further, I believe that because he follows the Os mostly via computer, there is a sense of fiction which surrounds the Os for Trea.

If one never watches the Os in real time (or at least the entirety of games, which creates a cohesive viewing), then everything one sees is fragmentary, and in a sense, fictive. The Os becomes parts, not wholes, not anything real or stable, much like fiction.

Trea’s wild notions are birthed from this viewing of the Os as fiction, and quite frankly, fit better with the creative realm.

Totally 100% behind this theory.   I bet if someone went back and looked at every post he has written, 75% have been negative about the Orioles.  That is not a fan of a team.  Perry Lyman told me in an email yesterday, “Trea wishes he was a Yankee’s fan.”  Someone left in the comments of one of the posts here that he thought he wanted to be a Red Sox fan.  It stands to reason people think this way, given the way he talks about the three teams.  It’s really hard to read.

So like I was saying, people were petitioning Tony and Scott to kick him off and they basically said, no.  If for no other reason, they didn’t want to trample all over the Constitution.  Freedom of speach and what not.  Just because the dude is inept doesn’t mean he can share his opinion.  We should just ignore him.

Anyway, last night Tony said something that didn’t get a lot of attention.  But, I saw that shit and I had to pass on the good word.

Tony-OH – I just wonder why people still engage him in conversation once he gets on his mantra? We take more stuff from people over Trea yet he does nothing to change his act or ever show any gratitude over the fact that Scott and I have spent hours of our lives defending the fact that we let him continue to post.

Honestly, I may be getting close to making the decision so many people want me to make.

What a day that would be.

See you all tomorrow!

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A reader who wishes to remain nameless felt so moved by our first Jtrea post, he decided to write his own.  We’ll call him, Perry Lyman.

*Ed. Note: The views expressed below do not neccessarily reflect the views of the ESH.  Any comments that are left on this post may or may not be answered by a member of our staff (staff, like they get paid…hah!).  Read at your own risk.

There’s a hole at 1B, dear Andy, dear Andy…

Is that supposed to be some song reference?  The AC/DC thing was cute and unoriginal.  This just sucks.

Just thought I’d remind him.

He doesn’t pay attention to you.  He.  Doesn’t.  Pay.  Attention.  To.  You.

Aside from that, this is some stalker shit.  You know, calling up the Warehouse, harassing people while trying to get a hold of MacPhail, then going back to his blog and drawing lipstick all over his face.

Oh but we have Michael Aubrey, Rhyne Hughes and Ty Wigginton to fill the spot.

And Brandon Snyder is in the minors.

So we do have depth, but that depth isn’t going to fill the hole. Not when your competition has players like Youkilis and Teixeira at the same spot.

1B has been a consistent problem ever since Rafael Palmeiro left the first time. Since Palmeiro’s departure the Orioles have used

Will Clark
Jeff Conine
Chris Richard
Raffy (again)
Kevin Millar
Aubrey Huff

And since Palmeiro left after 1998, the Orioles have not had an .900+ OPS from the position and haven’t had an OPS above .815 since 2001.

Ed. Note (Jjaks Clayton):  Only 27 players in the entire league had a .900 OPS last year (2009 season).   That’s 10% of starters…not per position…starters period.

1B has been a huge void that just has been patched and patched and patched without any thought to the LT.

This is all nice and good, but the 2004 World Champion Red Sox got an .813 OPS from the first base position.  The second time they won a title this decade their OPS for first base was a whopping .802.  For the decade the Red Sox averages a .720 OPS for the first base position while the Yankees had a .844 OPS.  .844 is very good but it’s still pretty far from the fucking .900+ that you demand.  .720?  How did the Red Sox ever manage to win two titles and make the playoffs almost every year?

Listen up, dipstick.  It’s not basketball where one player takes over an entire game and it’s not football where you worry about a cornerback/wide receiver match up.  First base doesn’t mean anything if you get production from other places like the Sox did for this past decade.

Yes, it’s a hole but it is  far and away not the only thing that has held this team back from competing.

We’ve passed on several options, Lee, Konerko, Delgado and Teixeira and yet now we seem to think Snyder might be good enough to fill the spot despite only flashing the skills needed once in a two month stint at Bowie. And most scouts think he won’t be more than an average position player at best.

Well I’m glad the book on Brandon Snyder has been written before he ever takes a Major League at bat.

How about being optimistic every once in awhile?  Is that too much to ask?

Average isn’t going to cut it at 1B in the AL East. It didn’t for the other Orioles playoff teams that featured names such as Boog Powell, Eddie Murray and Rafael Palmeiro.

There’s a hole at 1B.

So fix it dear Andy. Fix it right now.

I think I’ve already proven that average does cut it at first base in the AL East, provided the rest of your team is well built.  If you’d take a minute to take off your MacPhail shit kickin’ shoes and take a look around with some perspective that doesn’t include having your head up your ass, you’d realize that if you have a well rounded team, you don’t need a .900 OPS at first base to be a good team.

And again:

He doesn’t listen to you.

Thanks, Perry for participating and trying to make a difference.  Unfortunately, he will not read this.

Don’t forget that the ESH will be stirring up trouble at O’s Fan Fest this Saturday.  So pull on that O’s cap, tie up your sarcasm boots and put the rest of your normal clothes on as you normally would.  Don’t show up naked.

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