As you all know, we don’t think all that highly of most Orioles fans and baseball fans in general. Most people who consider themselves to be baseball fans are what I file under “casual” fans. This means they have little to no understanding of the game, don’t know the names of the players on the team they “root” and know nothing at all about the other teams and players in the league. I won’t even get into their lack of understanding on elementary statistics and what they mean. In other words, these people are idiots, not unlike most of the American population in general.
Turn on 105.7 or read the standard idiotic comments on any MASN blog and you will hear many angry “fans” calling in to express their anger at the the Orioles calling up Jake Arrieta to start against the Yankees tonight. These same people will also be blowing up the phones to tell the radio announcers what a great manager Rick Dempsey would make. That’s all you need to know to know that someone has no idea what they are talking about. Anyone who has paid attention to the Orioles over the last few years know what idiotic things come out of Dempsey’s mouth on a daily basis. The guy may have been a contributing player on great Orioles teams but he clearly knows very little about today’s game, it’s players, and strategy. This is the same guy who said Reimold would hit 40 home runs this year and that Luis Hernandez was going to be a good hitter, much better than he was in the minor leagues, because big league pitchers throw more strikes. I’m not making that up, he really said those things. Rick Dempsey is a fine cheerleader, leave him be. His campaigning for the job is bordering on pathetic.
Back to Arrieta, is it ideal for him to make his debut against the Yankmees? Probably not, but the effects of this are being way overblown. The Orioles want to give Guthrie an extra day of rest and they need a starter. Arrieta has an ERA under 2 at AAA, he is 24, and he has about 1 full season of pitching at AAA under his belt. They feel he is ready and he is our best option right now. It is that simple. In reality, the Yankees are the best offensive team in the AL, but that really only means they score about 1 run per game more than an average team. That is significant, but not significant enough to shy away from starting a pitcher against them. The effect of one start, debut or not, is minimal in the scope of an entire career. If Arrieta gets bombed, it is one start. If he has a successful debut, it is still one start. A young player’s debut does not make or break his career. Far too many of these people are pointing out the Nationals debuting Stephen Strasburg against the Pirates. Guess what so knowing baseball fans? The Nationals were waiting to be past the super 2 date to save money. This date was estimated to be June 6th this year. What was the Nationals first game after that date? the June 8th game against the Pirates. The move was purely coincidence. There is a very logical reason that Stephen Strasburg debuted for the Nationals, and Mike Stanton debuted for the Marlins on the same night and it has zippy to do with the competition they were facing. So let’s all stop being a bunch of whiny bitches who are scared of the Yankees and send our best option out to face them. Arrieta is not a player that even remotely lacks confidence and I’m sure he would rather debut against the Yankees than anyone else.
What I am interested in is who gets moved to make room for Arrieta on the roster. The Orioles were talking of moving Bergesen to the bullpen for the time being and have now said that Ohman will be moved back to a situational role. That most likely means that Castillo being shuttled back to Norfolk is likely, you could also make a strong case for finally getting rid of Fat Albers. I think what we may see in another surpisie move to go with many is that Bergesen is moved back to AAA to start. I could not argue much with that decision as Bergesen has pretty much thrown batting practice all seasn and now has lost his command as well. I would still like to see some shuffling in the bullpen. Gambino and Sarfate have been pitching well at Norfolk and Hendrickson, Albers, and Castillio have all been getting bombed in Baltimore. At least something is worth watching tonight…