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Transaction Oracle
— A Timely Look at Transactions as They Happen

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Orioles - Demoted Majewski

Baltimore Orioles - Optioned OF Val Majewski to Ottawa (AAA); recalled OF Luis Terrero and C Raul Chavez

Exciting, exciting stuff.  Nothing can match the awesomeness at having Corey Patterson, Luis Matos, and Luis Terrero on your team simultaneously.  The pointless 3rd catcher is just the icing on the cake.  Majewski should be in the minors right now, of course, but it’d be nice if the Orioles did some actual planning with AAA depth - they never seem to contemplate a player on their 25-man roster ever getting injured.

Dan Szymborski Posted: April 20, 2006 at 03:07 PM | 20 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. Adam S Posted: April 20, 2006 at 03:30 PM (#1976574)
Damn, I've been looking forward to Val Majewski all winter.
   2. RP Posted: April 20, 2006 at 03:35 PM (#1976586)
Matos is also injured. I must say, your rants about the Orioles are getting old.
   3. Gaylord Perry the Platypus (oi!) Posted: April 20, 2006 at 10:41 PM (#1977708)
So is this supposed to be ironic?

Looking Forward to ...
— BTF's Preseason Previews
Thursday, April 20, 2006
Orioles - Demoted Majewski

Or is this actually the Orioles preview?
   4. Honkie Kong Posted: April 20, 2006 at 10:59 PM (#1977737)
corey seems to be coming around, if the last 2 games are any indication.
anyway his defence out there is a ++, which helps if you are running Conine and Gibbons on the corners
   5. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 20, 2006 at 11:35 PM (#1977820)
Matos is also injured. I must say, your rants about the Orioles are getting old.
Yeah, Dan! You should pretend that the Orioles make good decisions, because that will keep Orioles fans happy.
   6. RP Posted: April 21, 2006 at 02:11 AM (#1978252)
Yeah, Dan! You should pretend that the Orioles make good decisions, because that will keep Orioles fans happy.

Oh please...you have no credibility re the Orioles. The point is not that they make a lot of good decisions -- obviously they've made a ton of bad ones over the last 10 years. But they've made some good ones too, esp. in the last couple years, and your refusal to acknowledge that fact makes it hard to take you seriously.
   7. John Lowenstein Apathy Club Posted: April 21, 2006 at 02:19 AM (#1978276)
...you have no credibility re the Orioles

I'm trying to figure out if that's an insult or a compliment. I think it's an insult.

your refusal to acknowledge that fact makes it hard to take you seriously

So every time the Orioles do something brain-twistingly asinine, he's supposed to preface his remarks with "I know the Orioles have made an occasional good decision recently when not running with scissors, but let me tell you about the latest atrocity..."?
   8. John Lowenstein Apathy Club Posted: April 21, 2006 at 02:22 AM (#1978284)
Ah, I just realized that I may have spoken too hastily to RP, and that his comment was a typo intended to be you have no credibility, you're the Orioles

(I know, I know... people who live in glass SkyDomes shouldn't throw stones)
   9. DKDC Posted: April 21, 2006 at 02:26 AM (#1978297)
Do most teams have a better 7th and 8th OFs than Terrero and Majewski?
   10. John Lowenstein Apathy Club Posted: April 21, 2006 at 02:32 AM (#1978321)
No, it is certainly true that the Orioles have an outstanding collection of seventh and eighth outfielders. Gibbons, Millar, Patterson, Terrero, Markakis (for the moment), Majewski, Conine and Newhan are possibly the finest collection of seventh and eighth outfielders outside the Smithsonian.
   11. Dan Szymborski Posted: April 21, 2006 at 02:37 AM (#1978333)
Oops, wrong place.

As for credibility, IIRC, DMN called the Carter, Drabek, and I think Guillen signings on the Orioles listserv about a month before they actually did.
   12. RP Posted: April 21, 2006 at 02:39 AM (#1978339)
I'm assuming from the Skydome reference that you're a Blue Jays fan...Gibbons is better than any of the Blue Jays' corner OFs, and Markakis is far better than any of their prospects. Actually, Majewski might also be better than any of the Blue Jays prospects. And the Orioles don't have $100 million tied up in a closer and a fragile, slightly above average starter.
   13. RP Posted: April 21, 2006 at 02:41 AM (#1978353)
As for credibility, IIRC, DMN called the Carter, Drabek, and I think Guillen signings on the Orioles listserv about a month before they actually did.

I used to really like his commentary on the orioles usenet group. But he's become a broken record over the last few years.
   14. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 21, 2006 at 03:16 AM (#1978422)
Oh please...you have no credibility re the Orioles. The point is not that they make a lot of good decisions -- obviously they've made a ton of bad ones over the last 10 years. But they've made some good ones too, esp. in the last couple years, and your refusal to acknowledge that fact makes it hard to take you seriously.
It's true. I mean, four years ago, they were at 67 wins, and last year they were all the way up to 74 wins! How can anybody not give credit to them for that?

Gee, I didn't realize the discussion was "have the Orioles made some good decisions over the last couple of years." I thought it was whether the specific decisions being criticized were lousy. I guess I hadn't realized that signing Miguel Tejada somehow made acquiring Jeff Conine and Kevin Millar less stupid.
   15. DKDC Posted: April 21, 2006 at 04:37 AM (#1978648)
I think it's fair to say that the this transaction falls well below the newsworthiness threshold of Transaction Oracle. Dan posted this because he wanted to say negative things about the Orioles.

I consider myself a pretty positive fan, but I'll freely acknowledge that the Orioles have made more bad decisions than good in the last few years, months, and weeks. There are glimmers of hope in an improved farm system, but this organization still just doesn't get it.

On the other hand, when there's such a bounty of well-deserved #### to be heaped on the Orioles, it seems odd to me to harp on the Orioles OF depth when it's probably one of the organizational strengths.

As the Blue Jays fan greatly exaggerated, the problem is quality, not quantity.
   16. Best Regards, President of Comfort Posted: April 21, 2006 at 04:45 AM (#1978674)
I remember finding an old post by you, David, telling someone that Jeter's defense would be fine. That was funny, not because it was you but because it was so very wrong.
   17. Joey Numbaz (Scruff) Posted: April 21, 2006 at 05:05 AM (#1978741)
I don't know that I buy that it's a 'pointless' 3rd catcher. When Javy Lopez is DHing, he can't be the backup catcher, unless you want to give up the DH for the game.

The other night they were losing 15-0 and Ramon had to stay in the entire game, because Javy was the DH. I guess they could have just given up the DH down 15-0, but what about when it's 5-1 and you want to save him a few innings, but you might come back?

I don't know, I guess they could just give up the DH late in a few games, but I do think it would hamper a managers flexibility. It's not totally pointless to have a 3rd catcher when your 2nd one is a DH.

*************

I also disagree that the Orioles are in such a shambles. Ask a Royals fan, or a Rockies fan if they'd take this roster. Heck, ask a Dodgers fan or a Giants fan. I think they are slowly putting together a pretty decent club. I especially like what they've done with the pitching staff and there is more help on the way in that department.

Don't get me wrong, they aren't great yet, but this team was pretty damned good for 4 month last year, before a rash of injuries killed them. This team would be the wild card team from the AL if the season ended right now, it's not like they are off to a 4-13 start. I'm not saying they will be the wild card team, but what exactly have they done that's so bad this year so far?

Two years ago this franchise was a complete disaster, it is much less of that today. They are willing to play kids (Roberts, Matos, Markakis, Cabrera, Gibbons, Bedard all home-grown - Chris Ray is looking pretty good too - hell, even Chris Britton is being given some mopup work in the pen), they've found some decent players that weren't really wanted anywhere else (Mora, Chen) they pulled the trigger on Tejada and Ramon Hernandez.

I love the call-ups of guys like Fiorentino for a few weeks last year - give the guy a taste so he works his ass off get back up there someday.

Should Jeff Conine be jettisoned? Absolutely. Was Fat Sidney given one-too-many chances? Probably. But a pretty smart organization gave him his next chance, so I can't really fault them there. The Kline signing looked great at the time, can't fault them because he turned into a pumpkin on their watch.

Rome wasn't built in a day. This organization has done fine the last two years. They are certainly on the right track. <strike>If</strike> When Daniel Cabrera turns into JR Richard (pitchers that through 92 MPH sliders don't grow on trees) and Nick Markakis becomes whatever he'll become and Val Majewski and some of the other young pitchers are ready this is going to be a pretty good team.
   18. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 21, 2006 at 06:01 AM (#1978807)
I don't know that I buy that it's a 'pointless' 3rd catcher. When Javy Lopez is DHing, he can't be the backup catcher, unless you want to give up the DH for the game.
The only way this comes into play is if

a) The starting catcher gets injured so badly that he can't continue;
b) You need to pinch hit for the starting catcher;
c) You need to pinch run for the starting catcher; or
d) Your scenario: it's such a blowout that you want to rest the starting catcher.

The first of these happens extremely rarely. The second will never happen with this roster, since the Orioles don't have any bench players significantly, better than Hernandez, and the fourth, well, if it's that big of a blowout, is it that big a deal? The third is the only real realistic issue, but (a) it won't come into play very much with a 12-man pitching staff, since you can't afford much PRing, and (b) you're only going to do that so late in the game that you're not going to need the DH much anyway. And just to reiterate, the worst thing that happens is that you lose the DH for a few innings. (Some managers act as if the rules require a forfeit or something.)

That having been said, I don't mind having a third catcher around; it does give the team a little extra flexibility compared to a ninth LF, which is what they'd use the spot for otherwise.

But what they need, particularly with Newhan out, is a backup infielder. (I know Tejada plays every day, but Mora and Roberts might need a rest every so often.) Right now Chris Gomez is it, and that's not really good enough.


Don't get me wrong, they aren't great yet, but this team was pretty damned good for 4 month last year, before a rash of injuries killed them.
First, I think it's pretty clear that they were playing far over their heads; Roberts had shown he wasn't an MVP candidate long before his season-ending injury. Second, "a rash of injuries" always kills them, because they don't seem to grasp the idea of putting together a good 40-man roster and a decent AAA team. Even when their front-line talent is adequate -- which is a generous evaluation -- the team has never been built to withstand injuries anywhere except at the DH slot, where they've always collected plenty of players.

I mean, look at this: Newhan and Matos get hurt, and they're already reduced to calling up a completely failed prospect who was released outright from another team, and a catcher waived by another team. (After some pointless roster shuffling with Majewski, that is.)
   19. RP Posted: April 21, 2006 at 12:57 PM (#1978925)
Thank you, Joe. I'm not saying the Orioles are in great shape, and they certainly have made far more dumb moves than good ones over the last few years, but there a lot of positive signs. Yes, signing Conine was stupid, but they just signed the best pitching coach in MLB, and the farm system is in pretty good shape (and was ranked #12 overall I think by BA) for the first time in, what, 20 years? I'm not asking for pollyannish comments, just some objective analysis.
   20. Greg Maddux School of Reflexive Profanity Posted: April 21, 2006 at 01:29 PM (#1978948)
I think it's fair to say that the this transaction falls well below the newsworthiness threshold of Transaction Oracle.

It's not above the "Tike Redman signs minor league contract" threshold?

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