Blog Entry

Showalter is right for O's -- at least for now

Posted on: April 13, 2011 1:07 pm
NEW YORK -- Buck Showalter thinks about everything.

Sometimes that's good.

An Orioles clubhouse that seemed unfocused and often uninterested before he arrived seems far more professional with Showalter in charge. Even many of his detractors will admit now that he was exactly the manager the Orioles needed when they hired him last summer (although they'll also point out that Showalter took over at the perfect time, when the down-and-out O's were finally getting healthy).

Showalter preached accountability, and since the players knew that he wasn't going anywhere anytime soon (unlike with predecessor Dave Trembley and interim manager Juan Samuel), they had little choice but to listen when he spoke.

He had plenty to say. Showalter is so organized and studies so much that some people who know him contend that he knows more about the Orioles' opponents than they know about themselves.

But Showalter can never limit himself to that.

He thinks about everything (everything baseball-related, anyway). He has an opinion about how everything should be done (whether he chooses to share it or not).

Take Tuesday, when Showalter met with reporters before the O's game against the Yankees was rained out.

He answered questions about his team, and about the Yankees. And then, unsolicited, he began preaching about bullpen mounds.

"In today's day and age, we have mounds on the playing surface," he said. "Imagine mounds at the free-throw line in the NBA."

He has a point. It's easy to understand why bullpen mounds can't be moved behind a fence at Wrigley Field, but it's hard to imagine why they were built to be in play (in foul territory, but still in play) at newer ballparks like Tropicana Field and AT&T Park.

A reasonable point, but it seemingly came out of nowhere. The bullpen mounds aren't in play at Camden Yards, the Orioles' home. They're not in play at Yankee Stadium, where the Orioles are playing this week. They're not in play at Cleveland's Progressive Field, where the Orioles play next.

So far as I can tell, it's not an issue anyone else in the game has been discussing this week.

But that's Showalter. That's what you get.
Category: MLB

Since: Dec 2, 2011
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Showalter is right for O's -- at least for now

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Showalter is right for O's -- at least for now

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Showalter is right for O's -- at least for now

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Showalter is right for O's -- at least for now

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Posted on: December 5, 2011 10:07 am

Showalter is right for O's -- at least for now

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Showalter is right for O's -- at least for now

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Showalter is right for O's -- at least for now

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Showalter is right for O's -- at least for now

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Since: Apr 14, 2011
Posted on: April 14, 2011 2:59 pm

Showalter is right for O's -- at least for now

So many arm chair quarterbacks, coaches, managers, etc., depending on the sport discussed, love to oversimplify each game to include only what they view as integral within that sport's context. As a spectator, I do it, and unless a fan has been there and done that, they all do it as well. O's fans have been grieving the loss of an era when everything was handed down to them from the baseball gods who smiled on the city of Baltimore during the years of Earl Weaver, et al.

Loved your article, and how, within its context, you highlighted just how much the O's need a guy who has the effervescence of an Earl, sans the dirt kicking / turning the hat backwards / get up in the face of the ump theatrics, which, by the way, I loved more than any other part of the game back in the day.

What I think of as significant in the arrival of Showalter, and I guess I am going to sound as if I know that guy personally, which of course I don't, is that he is dealing with a totally new brand of baseball, clouded by the steroid era, or error, a different culture in which to coach a team to playoff calibur status, etc. Especially, he has do do it within the confines of a Baltimore Orioles budget wherein we continue to regret our native son moving from the Braves to the Yankees, instead of coming home. Maybe Tex will change his mind in the near future.

We need to remember that within every context, sports, business, careers, education, family creation, etc. we are dealing with the ebbs and flows of  cultural change. Jackie Robinson, the Blacksox scandal, the hows and whys that sent Babe Ruth from the O's (little known fact there, I think) to the Sox to the Yankees, the steroid error, the Steinbrenner impact, greed, etc. ad infinitum are all indicative of how sports simply play out on the entertainment stage what is truly happening at every corner of a society. There is no better example of this than opening day 2011 at Dodger Stadium. We cannot ignore the fact that what we love (baseball) has become influenced by what we hate (greed, drugs, violence, injustice.)

So, back to what Buck has to deal with as manager of the O's, isn't it ironic that the economic reality facing Baltimore right now, in which it is clear that the owner doesn't believe that the ROI is worth the investment necessary to bring a champion back to B'more, unless we have an inkling of a change of heart and wallet in the making as of 2011. The irony? The issue over the past 20 years has been about money, hasn't it? So maybe the Buck can change this too. (Yes, there is a decision to be made under situations of scarcity as it regards the O's and any other champion in the making.) Remember the definition of economics from college? That's it.

I love Buck's perspective, personality and of course productivity that has followed his arrival in Baltimore. As a fan since the years when I wasn't aware enough, by reason of age, to know that Brooks and Frank were not brothers, LOL, I am very excited to see that a champion is coming to Baltimore.

Thanks for enjoying my ramble in response to your article. I look forward to reading more of your work. Feel free to help us grow at if you'd like to do so.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or