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In a Word: Wieters

orioles-catcher-matt-wietersAugust 16th, 2007, a Thursday, was almost the day that broke Orioles baseball.

That could have been the day Baltimore woke up to news that the club had failed to sign their can’t-miss, once in a lifetime draft pick. Seems hard to believe now, but it almost happened. Most reports during the day on the 15th suggested that the two sides were too far apart to get a deal done. In fact, shortly after midnight, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette actually went with a story on how the O’s came up short.

I remember that night, and I remember the despair that began to set in. Until around 12:10 AM, when the news came out that a deal was done and Matt Wieters was an Oriole.

The saga prompted Joe Jordan to remark — in one of the great moments in O’s front office history — that “you can tell the City of Baltimore that the old evil owner stepped up and took care of things tonight. We had to fight to the end.”

Draw a line from then to now, because everything that happened to the Orioles in between carried with it — directly or indirectly — the mark of transition. Matt Wieters was coming, but when?

Friday, May 29th, 2009.

There’s a voice in the back of my head shouting reminders to keep cool. That it’s early yet and anything can happen. That the team isn’t suddenly a playoff contender. That there’s a lot of work left to be done.

All true, and all worth remembering. And all completely off the radar right now, because the Kid is here and he’s starting tonight against the Detroit Tigers.

Go get ‘em.

(photo borrowed)

54 comments to In a Word: Wieters

  • sci

    Bergeson was awesome. I hope I was wrong about him being not-rotation-caliber. Maybe he is a nice #4 or 5 rotation guy after all. His sinker can be real good, and I just love his demeanor on the mound.

    Luke Scott, wow. This lineup is getting very formidable. If your only real hole is #9 (and Izturis and Andino aren’t even that bad), you’re in great shape.

  • dan the man

    I really like how the O’s have handled bringing up these kids. It’s almost like they planned out bringing up 4 Norfolk players (BB, Hernandez, Berken, Reimold) so that when The Man Himself got here, he’d feel comfortable. Obviously, injuries played a part in who they ended up bringing up, but it sure worked out great. Remember when I was worried about Lou Montanez “rotting in the minors”? Nah, me neither.

    Tough matchup tonight vs. Verlander, who we are historically bad against. Should be interesting to see how Guthrie fares after his nice outing last time. I’ll be at this game, too, hopefully bearing witness to more glorious Oriole moments. You’ve got to think there will be a decent crowd again on a nice Saturday fresh off a rousing win. Let’s hope.

  • Guys, Guys, Guys, I have to say that as I type this I’m not very happy about the sportsmanship shown today in the world of sports. First of all, the Red Wings did not have to be so barbaric in their treatment of the Penguins and in particular young Crosby. It was like watching a kid buying an ice cream cone from an ice cream truck and then watching a deranged pedophile snatch it from his hand; it just ain’t right.

    And, then to “witness” the inconsiderate and brutal way the Magic exposed the fact that bron bron has no help, especially defensively, was just uncalled for. Honestly, I was ashamed to be a sports fan. I mean did you see the pathetic attempts lodged by Verejao, a.k.a. sideshow bob, and Ilgauskas, a.k.a. Sloth from Goonies, at defending Dwight Howard? Assault charges should be filed on Howard and those guys may need serious psychological help after the way they were violated.

    I’m glad, though, to hear that Ben Wallace is considering retirement after this season. It’s the sportsmanlike thing to do. He’s washed up. Today’s transgressions are all made worse by the fact that Crosby put a stick in the line of the red wings post game celebration (child like) and the fact that “King” James skipped his post game presser like a b$@&h. I’m saddened and disgusted. I need to watch some Jai Lai.

  • dan the man

    Probably the worst game, offensively, that I’ve ever seen Adam Jones play as an Oriole. He got one ball out of the infield, going 0-5. Ah well.

    It was great to see another packed Camden Yards, though, and another Luke Scott bomb. The place went nuts. And of course it went nuts anytime Wieters did anything, and boy was he impressive against Detroit’s trio of flame-throwers they ran out there. Wieters only has extra base hits.

    Guthrie was impressive with the 10 k’s, but when you give up 3 runs in the process and run your pitch count to 110 in 6 innings, it kind of diminishes the outing. Nevertheless, he seems mostly back on track now.

    Jamie Walker is the next to go, clearly. He can’t do his one job, which sucks because he’s the man.

    Should be an interesting one today with Berken back out there. I want to see an impressive game from the offense and from someone else besides Luke Scott, who has been carrying the team.