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Camden Chat Roundtable Part 2: After Trembley

This is the conclusion of the chat that took place upon word of Dave Trembley's release. Topics covered include candidates for manager and hitting coach, Andy MacPhail past, present and future, and why the Orioles just can't seem to amass the talent of other teams. Enjoy!

duck: So, the O's are most likely going to name Samuel interim manager and take their sweet time finding a permanent replacement. Of the candidates reasonably available, who do you want to see named manager around November 15 or so?

Westie: I really want Bobby Valentine.

James F: My shortlist of guys I'd like to see, based on no qualified evaluation of their fitness for the position: Willie Randolph, Paul Molitor (former bench coach to the Twins, turned down the manager job when they were still possibly going to be contracted), Alan Trammell

twistedlogic: Harold Baines

duck: Harold's loving retirement.

Stacey: I'd like Harold for hitting coach. Can we get that going?


zknower: THIS.


Stacey: Harold isn't first base coach for the White Sox anymore?

duck: 1B coach for Ozzie? That's basically retirement.

Stacey: Honestly, I know that I have no idea who I want to be the manager. I have no idea how to evaluate properly.

zknower: I'd be happy with any of James's guys, but would prefer Randolph because he has actually managed before (as I said in the other thread).

James F: Trammell managed before too, but poorly

twistedlogic: I would have liked Manny Acta.

James F: Also an Acta fan, but I can't say that the Indians are doing much better than we are. 

duck: I secretly wanted Joe Girardi last time. Actually, not so secretly.

Stacey: BANNED

twistedlogic: BANNED

zknower: right, forgot that

duck: I didn't say I was right...


twistedlogic: Joe Torre?

Westie: All I know is someone will complain no matter who gets signed.

James F: I also just want Molitor because Paul Molitor is AWESOME.

daveh873: Paul Molitor is quite awesome

duck: Any way Paul takes this job? I mean if the check's big enough, sure, but...

James F: No idea. I can't seem to find anything that Molitor has done since quitting the Twins. Trammell is the bench coach with the Cubs though. 

twistedlogic: how about Mike Bordick for hitting coach?

Stacey: Could Mike Bordick hit?

James F: NO! Does anyone else remember Mike Bordick's hitting?

daveh873: I'd be on board with that. Bordick stuck in the league because he had to bust his ass to pull his weight offensively. Guys like that HAVE to know how to hit. It's the guys like Edidie that have the natural ability, and it's hard to teach what comes naturally to you.

Stacey: Actually, Dave, that's a decent point. It's like how Nolan Ryan is down in Texas talking about training pitchers to just be tougher. Um, most people aren't you, Nolan.

duck: ED-DIE! ED-DIE!

Stacey: Eddie has been fired from several hitting coach jobs for being a little bit...abrasive.

duck: Stacey, maybe a bit abrasive is what Adam Jones needs. This team is young enough by the time we clear the dead wood that maybe, just maybe, Eddie's approach works. And if he's gonna work anywhere, it's in Baltimore, where his damn picture is hung everywhere reminding these kids they ain't done shit and he was THE MAN for the better part of a decade.

twistedlogic: Adam Jones needs somebody more than abrasive

zknower: Adam Jones needs John Gibbons to PUNCH HIM IN THE FACE

Stacey: We need to go back in time and NOT anoint Adam Jones our savior and see what happens.

twistedlogic: that might help his head swelling.

duck: In Adam's defense, this is probably the first time he's truly failed, and I mean epically failed, in his athletic career. He keeps doing the same things, thinking the slump will reverse itself if he just tries harder. Well, doing what he's doing harder is just going to make him fail more. I don't think it's arrogance, I think it's the fact he doesn't know what to do besides what he's always done, and that was successful before.

daveh873: Should we NOT annoint Wieters, Matusz, Reimold, and 3e our saviours as well then?

twistedlogic: Well c'mon....he swings at everything. Nobody with any ounce of intelligence would think that he could reverse a slump by just swinging at everything.

zknower: Miggy does.

duck: zk: Sad part is, for Miggi, a lot of times he's right.

daveh873: Miggi also had ungodly amounts of natural talent. AJ does too, but if AJ has a career near that of Tejada's i'd jump for joy.

Westie: Can we just keep Juan Samuel as the manager? Thoughts?

twistedlogic: NO

duck: Sure, we can keep Juan Samuel, if we want to stop watching baseball forever. 

twistedlogic: this. i want to enjoy baseball. not watch us fuck up constantly

Stacey: At least if he's in the dugout he's not waving people in from third.

James F: If I knew what makes a good hitting coach I'd know who to hire, but I have no clue. I'd probably do what the Cubs did, and look at who has had a ton of success developing hitters and buy them away from their old team

zknower: Whomever it is, the organization needs to express a philosophy to be followed re: patience and working counts. They need to have some kind of plan. Else it doesn't matter who the coach is.

James F: Sure, they do. But really, for anything to go well, we need a plan. I'm kind of assuming a plan, otherwise this is all pointless

zknower: I'd like to assume there's a plan, but this year has made me doubt that.

Stacey: They also need some better hitters, else it doesn't matter who the coach is.

duck: And Stacey, we're back to my point of, we don't have those hitters coming up. Are we going to be able to buy enough bats?

James F: Yes, but once we open the door to that question - to the Andy question - then it all becomes academic. If Andy is the problem, then we're simply boned.

twistedlogic: We're boned anyways.

Stacey: I like what Andy has started, but I have no idea if he'll finish it. If Garrett Atkins is the bat, then fuck our future.

twistedlogic: I don't really see what MacPhail started though.

James F: The thing is that I'd have had no problem with Atkins, even knowing what we know now, at Ryan Garko's salary.

zknower: Garrett Atkins was never going to be "The Bat". He was always a bridge. 

Westie: here is a question. If Atkins was a low risk, high reward signing for little money, why don't we just release him?

twistedlogic: because it wasn't little money. But I think he does get released when they decide on Arrieta.

twistedlogic: I'm not going to put anything on MacPhail yet. 

duck: I disagree. We had a chance to buy bats this winter and didn't. Miggi was a one-year stopgap to Bell, and Atkins' numbers were putrid for all to see.

twistedlogic: make a great point duck. but i dunno what bats we were gonna buy.

zknower: This was not the year to buy bats. Bad market, team not ready.

duck: That leads me to my last question: How much of this is on Andy MacPhail, and how much longer is his grace period? You can't turn around a franchise in 3 years, but just how much longer does his rope get let out before it runs out?

James F: I just don't know. Bear in mind we started off in a horrible place, with one blue chip prospect in our whole system and only a handful of actual major league talent with a ton of bad contracts on our books.

zknower: Andy gets through next year, IMHO. He has made incredible changes to the org. This year was a step back, but it's not all lost yet. We may make strides in the second half. I look to where we are at the end of next year to decide on MacPhail. Also, ESPECIALLY at this coming offseason and how well we "buys the bats" when it's for real and not a bridge.

Stacey: One thing I try to think about is the fact that it took the Orioles a long, long time to get as awful as they were. They were barren and broken for years and years and years. It stuck out to me when Andy Seiler mentioned that in his Q&A with James, it takes a lot of time to recover from what was done to this team.

daveh873: I can't blame MacPhail for most of this. You have to get the best talent you can and hope it develops. No one is a psychic. He got a ton of young talent for a team that had almost none and he did it without giving away any of our future. I need to see some FA's coming in soon, but for now i'm happy with him.

Westie: I blame PA, except not really

duck: Is it fair to expect a turn-around to take six or seven years? Isn't it possible to fix problems in less than the better part of a decade?

zknower: Not when you've been fucked as bad as the Orioles were when he took over in 2007

James F: Well, again I think it depends. So much of all this is luck - you need not only to draft right and sign the right free agents, but you also need to just get lucky. Where are the Rays if Pena and Zobrist don't come out of nowhere?

Stacey: James, that's depressing as hell.

duck: Still with Longoria manning 3B at below market value and probably don't trade some of the pitching they traded, and not much worse off.

James F: I think you can do it faster if you are lucky, and faster if you see the arbitrage opportunities faster. And I think we do a lousy job of seeing the opportunities.

daveh873: Even more, you need to not be as UNlucky as we have been. Between injury and ineffectiveness almost no one could predict, it has been bad.

twistedlogic: Well prospects are all luck.

James F: I don't think prospects are all luck

twistedlogic: well not entirely.

duck: And I'd say that's on the FO. I'm still down on Hoes, Avery and Hobgood as ever contributing at the MLB level, and I just don't see where the internal answers are coming from in the next 3 years aside from some pitching.

zknower: prospects are educated guesses.

twistedlogic: Coaching has something to do with it.

zknower: I agree with this.

duck: The old coaching adage, "Boy, YOUR potential is going to get ME fired!"

zknower: The best prospect coming into the majors still needs good caching for his first 2-3 years

James F: I'd say that what disappoints me about our front office is that they are never ahead of the game. The other small and medium markets figured out the value of the international FA market first. Jack Z in Seattle saw the Cliff Lee opportunity, same with Beane and Holliday. We miss these opportunities.

duck: We did get hugely unlucky with Koji's health, although the warning signs are there. No excuse not to be in Chapman, who went to the Reds.

James F: Sure, the Koji thing was bad luck. But I'm talking more about the prospects and less about the established guys

daveh873: Well Seattle saw the opportunity with Lee and it cost them a decent amount to have a good pitcher getting no run support on a team that's probaby not going anywhere.

James F: They got Lee for very little, and will get as much if not more for him at the trade deadline.

twistedlogic: ehhhh I'm not so big on that international market thing

Stacey: twisted, what is your solution, then?

twistedlogic: My solution to what? Sucking? Sign better players. 

Stacey: Free agents?

twistedlogic: yea...haven't seen any sufficient evidence that you must have international FAs to win

Stacey: But the fact is we have to get the talent from somewhere. Why not look everywhere?

James F: Oh, I don't think you have to have them to win. It just means bonus prospects

daveh873: Yea, I wouldn't mind having a Robinson Cano on the team right about now. It def. doesn't hurt.

twistedlogic: yea I mean, I'm sure they help

Stacey: So, we totally didn't talk about Dave Trembley very much. I guess, honestly, what is there to say.

James F: I think it is pretty sad. I would have liked Dave to have done well. And what I'll always give him credit for is that he was always pretty classy in defeat.

Stacey: When Dave was first given the job, it was such a good story.

daveh873: Dave's a likeable guy. I remember when Perlozzo got the boot I was elated. As much as Dave has been pretty damn horrible at his job I can't take joy from him being fired.

Stacey: I actually supported him out loud much longer than I actually wanted to simply because I wanted to much for it to work out.

James F: This whole mess I put squarely on the FO. Sure, he wasn't a good manager. But he was set up to fail horribly this season

twistedlogic: Agreed completely.

Stacey: I never really thought about it until you brought it up, James, but it does seem true that the "time for improvement in the standings" edict changed Trembley.

daveh873: I don't know about that. The "winning counts" thing was dumb but Trembles had more potential talent on this team then I've seen in a loooong time and it's been an utter failure.

Stacey: He always made dumb old school decisions, but he seemed to be doing way too much even more often this year. And the worse the team did, the more he tried those things.

twistedlogic: probably because he wanted a swift death. The guillotine only takes a few seconds to drop. 

James F: It changed the whole team. Remember last year, when we were rebuilding and it was all about letting players find their stroke and giving guys a chance to show something and we shut down Reimold for precautionary reasons? What happened to those Orioles?

twistedlogic: none of them are left. Jones has been shit. Reimold has been shit. Pie got hurt. Bergesen got hurt, and then became shit.

Stacey: Yeah but why have they been shit? Jones, Wieters, those guys are universally acknowledged talent.

twistedlogic: Well its far too early to say much about Wieters. i think he's playing too much and that's bringing him down. That and he's thinking too much

daveh873: Well that's the big question. I guess that's starting to be addressed by this firing. I doubt that's the answer though.

Stacey: But it's not too early to say about Jones? They're the same age.

twistedlogic: Yes but Jones has been around longer in the MLB. that and I've never thought jones has been any good. Always had potential, but never seemed to learn from mistakes

James F: This is where the lineups become an issue for me. I feel to a degree that all the shuffling around, all the pressure put on guys to produce for a certain role, has been detrimental. Not that I know shit about managing, but I wouldn't mind seeing Jones told - you bat second, no matter what, and Wieters batting sixth, no matter what, and if that means that fucking Fatkins leads off, so be it

twistedlogic: Agreed James, but i don't think that'll help much.

twistedlogic: Jones was batting 2nd for quite awhile and it was killing guys like nicky and wiggles

Stacey: The lineup shuffle bothered me because there didn't appear to be any reason other than "mixing it up."

James F: I don't care about results, twisted. I know that I'm alone, but I don't care if we don't win another game as long as our assets improve in value

twistedlogic: was just "shuffle guys for the sake of shuffling"

daveh873: There might be something to this. No matter how into stats we get as fans, these are humans playing a game. You over think things and it can mess with your performance. Sometimes a little structure and normality goes a long way.

twistedlogic: But to improve in value, they have to improve their play if they improve their play, we'll get wins. the only way to get more value to get better results.

James F: Eh, maybe not. I don't care if Tillman and Matusz pitch great seven inning starts and the bullpen blows it.

twistedlogic: Oh I don't either.

Stacey: You two are obviously robots.

twistedlogic: But Matusz has been fine all year (minus those two really shitty starts).

James F: Pretty soon, we're going to have a team of Nicky, Wieters, Jones, Izzy and scrubs. Those guys can play their asses off and we'll still lose

twistedlogic: I love how you left Izzy out of "scrubs"

James F: Izzy can play great D - that counts

twistedlogic: this is true....I've actually defended his crappy offense on several occasions.

daveh873: That it does, especially at a position where few teams really have any decent offensive output.

Stacey: Felix will be back to save the day after the AS break.

James F: I hope so. But Felix is proving to be quite brittle

Stacey: I know. That worries me.

James F: Yeah. But he's fun to watch play.

daveh873: Honestly I love the guy, but we don't even know if Pie is really good. He's shown flashes of it, but not for any real amount of time. The end of last year and the first few games of this year are all he's really done at the ML level. AJ's been better for longer amounts of time. Who knows what we'll get when Pie comes back?

twistedlogic: I would like to see the Atkins experiment ended. 

James F: Yep. Nothing left to gain there.

twistedlogic: Atkins is sorta like that electronic device you buy from best buy. You open it up, realize it doesn't work, but you can;t return it because you opened the packaging

Stacey: Ok so I think we should wrap this up. Any last words about Trembley, Samuel, and all that jazz? 

James F: Juan Samuel, please be lousy, because I can't stand the idea of you managing the 2011 Orioles.

Stacey: Do you think there is ANY chance of that? That makes me stomach hurt just thinking about. 

daveh873: Samuel deserves a shot at managing about as much as Atkins deserves to be starting. They both suck at their jobs. Neither deserves a promotion for it.

twistedlogic: there might be. Remember Perlozzo?

James F: I have no idea how Andy and Angelos make these decisions. No clue.

daveh873: If that happens I will not be a happy boy.

twistedlogic: I might boycott

daveh873: Unless we are winning a ton of games. Then I won't give a crap.

Stacey: If they promote anyone from the system without management experience in 2011 I will lose my shit.

James F: All I know is that we could look better just if Jones and Wieters turn it up, and if we do, some idiots will credit Samuel

Stacey: Well that's a no-win situation, because we NEED them to show some improvement this year.

James F: Yep. Guess we'll just have to hope they play awesome while Samuel does all kinds of boneheaded shit.

daveh873: Samuel is actually getting a good situation. They can't really get worse, the talent is there, and he'll be getting Pie and B-Rob back plus the potential call up of Arrieta. It's pretty scary.


A pretty abrupt ending, I know, but I think Dave's last line pretty much sums up the Orioles future: It's pretty scary.