Tap-In Question: Which all-time Oriole has frustrated you the most during your fandom? - BaltimoreBaseball.com
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Tap-In Question: Which all-time Oriole has frustrated you the most during your fandom?

Photo credit: Joy R. Absalon

Back-to-back days at the Tap Room. It’s been that kind of week.

I’ve been thinking about this topic for a while. One of our regulars – 5Brooks5 – wrote something Thursday about Chris Davis that triggered the thought again.

And this weekend’s celebration of the 25-year anniversary of Camden Yards, which includes the return of that 1992 club, seems like a perfect time to bring up the conversation.

I know it’s human nature that, when we’re in the moment, things seem to be the absolute best or worst. So, keep that in mind, when you answer today’s question.

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But I am rather curious as to which player in Orioles’ history has frustrated you the most. I don’t necessarily mean which player you have liked the least. or which player seemed like the biggest jerk. Or which player you couldn’t wait for the Orioles to dump. Or which hyped player you thought was the biggest bust. Let’s assume those components make up “most frustrating,” but also fall into separate categories.

The most frustrating title, to me, is someone who failed to meet expectations, but that you, deep down, knew had the talent to succeed. And just couldn’t get out of his own way as an Oriole. That seemingly every time you wanted to cheer for him, there was disappointment. To the point that maybe you didn’t want to cheer for him anymore.

It seems like the current Orioles have two players that have frustrated their fan base to epic proportions: Ubaldo Jimenez and Davis.

Jimenez has been the definition of erratic during his four years with the team. And it doesn’t help that he signed the richest free agent contract for a pitcher in club history. It actually irks many that Jimenez is such a good guy, works so hard, shows glimpses of excellence and has handled the adversity so well. Because that makes him harder to dislike. But even easier to be frustrated by.

Then there’s Davis, who has been a tremendous player for the Orioles at times, twice leading the majors in homers and twice winning the annual Most Valuable Oriole Award. Because of those contributions, and his immense popularity in Baltimore over the years, it’s probably unfair to lump him in with players who wholly frustrated the fan base due to lack of production.

But it really is hard to watch Davis at the plate when he is going poorly. And because he currently owns the richest contract in club history, and strikes out incessantly – oftentimes with his bat on his burly shoulders – his current Oriole Approval Rate is, well, not strong.

I guess I’m curious to see where you think these two fit into the hierarchy of frustrating, all-time Orioles. And it’s particularly timely because my vote for most frustrating Oriole of all time is expected at Camden Yards this weekend: Glenn Davis.

Davis certainly wins the award for unluckiest Oriole – his three-year career here was pockmarked with unfortunate disaster/injury after another. He played in just 185 games and homered only 24 times in those three seasons (1991-93) and retired at the age of 32.

He’ll forever be remembered as the reason the Orioles shipped away three future All-Stars – Curt Schilling, Pete Harnisch and Steve Finley – before the 1991 season in what is the worst deal in club history.

That wasn’t his fault, of course. But that trade – which made sense for the Orioles at the time — raised the expectations for the slugging first baseman. And the more he failed, or was injured, the more the frustration grew in Birdland. I never covered Davis, but, by all accounts, he was a great guy who was torn up by his lack of production in Baltimore. That, though, didn’t extinguish the frustration felt by the fans.

There have been others who have vied for the “Most Frustrating Oriole” title. A few candidates: Alan Wiggins, Sidney Ponson, Jake Arrieta, Kevin Gregg.

Old-timers will tell me that this trophy belongs to catcher Earl Williams, a former NL Rookie of the Year whom the Orioles acquired in 1972 for four players – including future managers Davey Johnson and Johnny Oates. Williams failed miserably, and couldn’t play for demanding skipper Earl Weaver. Williams was shipped back to Atlanta for a minor leaguer in 1975.

So, there are some thoughts. Now, share yours. There is no right answer to this one.

Tap-In Question: Which all-time Oriole has frustrated you the most?

87 Comments

87 Comments

  1. Boog Robinson Robinson

    August 18, 2017 at 7:37 am

    I nominate Cal Ripken Jr.

    OK, OK …. I take it back. Calm down .. it’s a JOKE people! Sheeeesh.

    Dan, I may have gone with a few others, but you always seem to use up the good ones. So .. in refusing to repeat any of your names … or mention Reggie since I refuse to include that louse as “an all time Oriole”….

    The name that immediately comes to my mind is Glenn’s cousin, Storm Davis. Not that he didn’t pitch well for us, and no fault of his own, but I’ll always remember him be saddled with moniker of “Cy Future”. He actually pitched pretty well for us, (we certainly would LOVE to have him on this current team), but somehow in my pea brain … he fell short of my expectations. Simply because of that nickname.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 8:49 am

      That’s a good one, Boog. I figured this may be a topic that brings out some individual stories and reasons. Drink chip. (Tho it’s a little early to start giving YOU freebies.)

    • Bancells Moustache

      August 18, 2017 at 8:50 am

      I second that. If you have a name like Storm Davis and you neither win the Cy Young nor secretly go out and fight crime in Gotham City you are a disappointment. If only his parents had named him Scott or Stanley none of this would apply.

  2. pedro

    August 18, 2017 at 7:52 am

    It has to be framed in the context of value. I think that is what leads to frustration. It’s Jimenez and Davis, hands down, because of the lack of value. You could argue Jeffrey Hammonds or Ben McDonald (high #1 picks) but they were only frustrating from not meeting expectations.
    The mega contracts of Davis and Jimenez compound the frustration because of the opportunity cost. What could have been done with that money (international scouting, etc)?
    No megacontracts, please. It only leads to frustration.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 8:54 am

      Reasoned opinions. Drink chip. But I will counter with this: what about the previous years with Davis when he was outproducing his salary (in an MLB sense)? Should that be factored in?

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      August 18, 2017 at 9:40 am

      Wish I had thought of McDonald. Good one.

  3. karks

    August 18, 2017 at 8:02 am

    I’m actually going to go with Daniel Cabrerra (at least, off the top of my head). He had such an arm and yet couldn’t find any consistency. The O’s kept throwing him out there every 5 days hoping the light bulb would go on.

    I always figured he would end up with another team and find major success. He was Jake Arrieta before there was a Jake Arrieta (who also deserves mention here).

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 8:54 am

      I nearly suggested him Karks. But like Boog has said, I didn’t want to take all the good ones.

  4. Liamandcarolinesdad

    August 18, 2017 at 8:21 am

    Piggy-backing on my comment from last night – the triumvirate of Kevin Gregg, Jorge Julio, and Tommy Hunter as closer(s).

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 8:55 am

      That’s a good one. No Mike Gonzalez?

    • Liamandcarolinesdad

      August 18, 2017 at 10:52 am

      He wasn’t on the mound enough for me to throw Natty Boh’s at my tv…but yeah, he was pretty awful too.

  5. bigdaddydk

    August 18, 2017 at 8:25 am

    Just to throw an alternative to who a lot of people will say, I’m going to say Brian Matusz. Very high pick, expected to be a beast lefty starter, and was only for a time a competent LOOGY.

    OK, I really wanted to say Ubaldo and Crush, in that order, but it did come across as a bit cliche under the circumstances. I just think there were very high expectations for Matusz that didn’t pan out. I could also lump Wieters into that category based on the hype coming up — Mauer with power, etc. — but I do think overall he was added value for most of his time in Baltimore. I also think Wieters was unfairly held to excessive expectations. I don’t see that in Matusz. He just never materialized.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 8:57 am

      This is a really good one and one that gets forgotten because he was a solid reliever and contributor for a while. But his regression as a starter frustrated everyone involved and was painful to watch. He was the fourth pick overall. He was basically a lefty Gausman but could never right the ship as a starter once things went poorly. Drink chip.

    • OriolesFan1986

      August 18, 2017 at 3:50 pm

      I’ve read scouts that don’t know how Wieters got compared to Mauer and they compared him closer to Varitek, which if you look at their numbers it was pretty dead on I say. Matusz frustrated me to no end. I thought we had a rotation for a decade in Arrieta, Britton, and Matusz.

      • Dan Connolly

        August 18, 2017 at 7:14 pm

        Varitek was the natural comparison. Especially w Georgia Tech and Boras connections.

  6. general81

    August 18, 2017 at 9:12 am

    The Bell brothers – Juan and Josh. Juan was the centerpiece of the Eddie Murray trade to the Dodgers; Josh was a key in the George Sherrill trade to the Dodgers. Both were supposed to be significant upgrades at shortstop and third base, respectively; both flamed out. As a result, in trading away a Hall of Famer and our one legitimate relief pitcher, we got bupkus.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 7:04 pm

      Josh Bell was a third baseman. Dude never looked like a shortstop, I promise you that. But you’re right. Both flameouts. Good call

  7. Orial

    August 18, 2017 at 9:14 am

    Daniel Cabrera. Looked like the real deal. Oh well.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 7:04 pm

      Such a great arm. But like many just couldn’t learn to locate his pitches.

  8. Johntr1984

    August 18, 2017 at 9:16 am

    Jeffery Hammonds. Came up as a real young kid, fast, could hit, played a great outfield. He hit around .300 his first couple seasons, albeit in somewhat limited capacity and then fell off from there. Turned into a serviceable 4th outfield for several teams, but never into the superstar he looked like coming up from the minors.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 7:05 pm

      Yeah. That was one I almost put into my list. Had a solid season when thrust into action in 1997 tho.

  9. Orial

    August 18, 2017 at 9:17 am

    Sorry see Cabrera was already mentioned. My bad. Let’s try Larry Bigbie. Tall,smooth,nice swing,good OF. Just didn’t pan out.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 7:06 pm

      Another from the “great guy” variety

  10. Nate Wardle

    August 18, 2017 at 9:20 am

    I agree with many of the names mentioned here, but for me there are 2.

    1 – Brian Matusz, for reasons already mentioned.

    2 – Nolan Reimold. I’ve told this story elsewhere, but I was the winner of the Nolan Reimold sweepstakes, which he of course was in the minor leagues for. Admittedly, it was a bit embarrassing for the O’s staff that showed me and 3 friends around Camden, but they were great. But, Reimold seemed to have such potential, but injuries took it away. I’ll never forget his hot start to 2012, and what could have been had he stayed healthy. So, Reimold probably more for personal reasons than his actual potential, but still a source of frustration.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 9:23 am

      Another good one. What made his game work was his hustle. But that’s also what killed him. Diving into the stands and injuring his neck sapped him of much of his career.

  11. Raymo

    August 18, 2017 at 9:41 am

    Dennis Martinez anyone? As I recall he had so much potential but struggled with alcohol issues, and like Arrieta he didn’t excel until the Orioles let him go. My memory is foggy though so it may not be reliable.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 9:57 am

      Nope. You picked a great one. Dempsey said Denny was the most talented pitcher he ever had. Just didn’t realize that full potential until later in life. Drink chip.

  12. GSISDANNO

    August 18, 2017 at 9:49 am

    I agree with the Earl Williams assessment. He was the NL Rookie of the Year as a catcher for the Braves and the Orioles had him tagged for greatness. But when he came from Atlanta, he never approached the production he had as a Brave. Earl Weaver started using him as a DH and sometimes at first base. But he never fit in here. Of course, he kinda disappeared when he went back to Atlanta.
    I also agree with Chris Davis. But I don’t think it’s fair to judge him because everything is fresh on my mind. I understand why Buck won’t bench him but I would bat him lower in the order. I have never seen a guy take more called strike threes than him. And I won’t soon forget how he killed a rally against Houston in the ninth inning by hunting softly back to the pitcher.

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      August 18, 2017 at 9:58 am

      As I remember it, the knock on Earl Williams was his subpar play behind the plate. AND consider that it was a lot easier to mash taters in Fulton County Stadium than it was old Memorial in Bal’more. Witness how Davey Johnson who averaged less than 10 per year with the Orioles made a sudden Brady Andersonesque quantum leap to 43 his 1st year in Atlanta.

      But yeah .. Williams was a good choice.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 9:58 am

      Apparently Earl badly wanted Williams and then couldn’t stand him once he managed him

  13. Bird Man 8

    August 18, 2017 at 9:50 am

    My ultimate will always be Brian Matusz. I remember going to his debut at Camden Yards, and just being excited for the potential. From there it was all down hill.

    I’m going to take a different approach, and mention two guys that never even got a cup of coffee. First is #5 overall pick in 2009 Matt Hobgood, and 2006 #9 overall pick Billy Rowell. I know, teams miss on high draft picks all the time in baseball, and its not as much them as it is a frustration with the organizations inability to draft and develop players during that time period. For some reason those two will always stick out to me, but that’s probably because that’s around the time I really started getting into the team. I’ll always remember the Hobgood article written in The Sun after we drafted him, and just being excited for the guy. Over a short time my excitement only diminished, and that light of hope went out kind of quickly. As a bonus, I’ll throw in unsigned draft pick Wade Townsend, 9 hits with the organization Brandon Synder, Pedro Beato, Adam Loewen, Chris Smith, Beau Hale…..sigh, I could go on, but now I’m sad.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 10:00 am

      Bird Man, if you want to continue to stumble down that path I did a piece in June ranking the worst draft picks in Os history. I also did a best one. They are on the site. Just search most disappointing draft picks

  14. Johntr1984

    August 18, 2017 at 9:58 am

    Albert Belle. That is all

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      August 18, 2017 at 10:00 am

      Joey? True .. he had already peaked in Cleveland.

    • bigdaddydk

      August 18, 2017 at 10:09 am

      I was so thoroughly disillusioned with his time in Baltimore that I’d completely scrubbed it from my mind. Thanks for replanting it. 🙂

    • Bancells Moustache

      August 18, 2017 at 10:19 am

      That one goes without saying. Belle was hot garbage and pretty much made Angelos lock the safe for 6 years, finally squeezing out a few bucks for Miggy Tejada in ’04.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 11:22 am

      I knew there’d be a mention of him here.

    • Camden Bird

      August 19, 2017 at 2:44 am

      Belle actually had a REALLY good 1999 and a decent 2000. In ’99, he collected 181 hits, 36 2B, 37 HR, 117 RBI, and a .297/.400/.541 slash line. Not to mention, he also had 11 outfield assists, 2nd only to Jermaine Dye for AL outfielders. In 2000, he again hit 20+ HR and 100+ RBI to go with a .281 average. How is that “hot garbage?” Yeah, his contract will go down along with Ubaldo’s as worst in franchise history. But nobody foresaw his degenerative hip condition, and unlike Ubaldo, Belle actually produced very well in the time that he did play. At least we’re not the LA Angels on the hook for Pujols’ contract!

  15. Bancells Moustache

    August 18, 2017 at 10:13 am

    You know, Boog isn’t as far off with his Cal Ripken Jr. joke as it may seem. All due respect to the greatness of the Ironman, the last 5 years or so of his tenure he was a bit of a liability and his reputation vastly outstripped his production. I can recall many a 2 out rally where the Greatest Oriole of them all stepped to the dish and promptly went down swinging or popped out to shallow left. Plus, and no one ever mentions this but it’s always been something I’ve thought about, the worst era in Orioles history (87-88) coincided with a time period when the Ripken family pretty much ran the organization. Then Frank Robinson comes in in 1989 and that great “Why Not?” season takes place, still my favorite all time Oriole team (Moose Milligan!)

    Go ahead a throw the rotten vegetables, just watch the face please.

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      August 18, 2017 at 10:28 am

      You’re a much more brave man than I BanMo.

      That being said, I’m going to back you up a wee bit, in that I always thought Cal was a bit overrated. Of course The Steak covered a lot of pimples, but take away those 2 MVP years and there was a lot of mediocre going on.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 11:23 am

      Clean up at the end of the bar. Clean up at the end of the bar.

    • Anton Pahomov

      August 21, 2017 at 9:56 am

      =)

  16. Bancells Moustache

    August 18, 2017 at 10:21 am

    Also, I’m not old enough to remember it, but I’m fairly certain anyone over 50 on this forum spits on their own floor and shouts a string of unprintable blasphemies upon hearing the name of Reginald Martinez Jackson.

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      August 18, 2017 at 10:30 am

      I alluded to him in my 1st post. I believe the term was “louse”.

      “Spits on your own floor” … would that by chance be a Goodfellas reference? I like it!

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 11:24 am

      It was only one year, but the frustration lasted a generation.

      • Bird Man 8

        August 18, 2017 at 3:04 pm

        Way too young to understand the frustration, but I’m looking at his stats for his lone year with the organization, and he led the league in Slugging. Is the frustration because he left and signed a mega contract with the Yankees? Or was he just a complete jerk while he was here?

        • Bancells Moustache

          August 18, 2017 at 3:25 pm

          Carpetbagging in its purest form, and it cost the Orioles Don Baylor.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 7:07 pm

      Well, Bird Man. He held out once traded. Which hurt a team that had legit playoff aspirations. And the point of the trade was to re-sign him, which they didn’t. And you know the rest of the story.

  17. RhodyBob

    August 18, 2017 at 10:38 am

    Matusz, Strop, Cabrera are a great start. First two were the only ones i yelled at at our home stadium

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 11:25 am

      Poor Strop. Totally misunderstood. And he was on the Ubaldometer of nice guys.

  18. Osfan73

    August 18, 2017 at 11:16 am

    Most frustrating Oriole (s)…..how about Armando Benitez and Mike Timlin.
    Benitez had good velocity for late in the game but was frustrating because the bigger the situation was he seemed to come unglued and loose composure, along with control of his pitches.
    And Mike Timlin, well I remember he couldn’t CLOSE a box with with tape let alone close a baseball game with a lead.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 11:25 am

      It took a while to get an Armando mention. I lost that bet. Drink chip.

  19. Bancells Moustache

    August 18, 2017 at 12:20 pm

    Pedro Strop should get an honorable mention here, because I guarantee you when the Arrieta deal went down with Chicago, many of your readers didn’t even notice Jake was leaving as they were so happy Strop was going out the door in front of him. I know I was.

    • RhodyBob

      August 18, 2017 at 1:43 pm

      Me too!

    • OriolesFan1986

      August 18, 2017 at 3:46 pm

      Same here. Every night I was saying just release Strop already. And now look at him.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 7:08 pm

      Man, Pedro. Was it the hat?

  20. Homerago

    August 18, 2017 at 12:38 pm

    Gene Woodling. He made it known that he didn’t want to be an Oriole, and it definitely showed in his performance.

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      August 18, 2017 at 12:54 pm

      I bow to this man. You sir, are Oriole fans royalty.

    • Olney Ogre

      August 18, 2017 at 1:41 pm

      Woodling was an all star as a Oriole then long time first base coach

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        August 18, 2017 at 1:48 pm

        I’m an old fart, but I had never heard of him until today.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 7:08 pm

      I didn’t the background on that either.

  21. garyintheloo

    August 18, 2017 at 1:20 pm

    Glenn Davis and Hobgood are too easy. I’ll give you Felix Pie and Kevin Gregg. Some fans actually thought the Os should go with Pie as their centerfielder rather than Adam Jones. Gregg made us actually squirm to see if he would accept our offer to “save” us. Desperate times indeed.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 7:09 pm

      Pie was super talented. An amazing physical specimen. Just couldn’t do anything consistently. Hit for a cycle, though.

      • OriolesFan1986

        August 19, 2017 at 2:21 am

        Hard to believe that he still is only just 32. Last I remember was him having a good 2014 in Korea.

  22. Olney Ogre

    August 18, 2017 at 1:39 pm

    Glen Davis !! It was a trade made at the right time that completely blew up . We traded 3 young players who had fabulous careers for a slugger who completely flamed out .

    • RhodyBob

      August 18, 2017 at 1:50 pm

      I have to say the lingering regret of the Davis trade makes that one king

    • Raymo

      August 18, 2017 at 2:16 pm

      I totally agree and haven’t gotten over it yet. It was Houston’s revenge for the Mike Cuellar trade.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 7:10 pm

      At the time of the trade tho, Davis looked to be the missing piece.

  23. garyintheloo

    August 18, 2017 at 1:52 pm

    During our time in Outer Darkness we offered a one-dimensional outfielder named Jeromy Burnitz a two year contract before the 2006 season. He turned that down for a one year contract with the Pirates who were also in Outer Darkness. Ouch that hurt! Jeromy retired after that season.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 7:11 pm

      Yup. I covered that walk through the Wilderness.

  24. bigdaddydk

    August 18, 2017 at 2:22 pm

    So, would it be fair to mention Jose Bautista? Although he was an Oriole for such a short time, he never amounted to much in Baltimore and then went on to stardom (and douche-dom, in the interest of full disclosure) in Toronto, via TB, KC, and Pittsburgh.

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      August 18, 2017 at 2:27 pm

      Please, never mention Jose Bautista around here again. He is dead to us.

      • bigdaddydk

        August 18, 2017 at 2:30 pm

        So, he disappointed you is what you’re saying. I think I found one that pretty universally fits the bill. Joey Batflip.

        • Boog Robinson Robinson

          August 18, 2017 at 6:30 pm

          Pure evil.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 7:11 pm

      More about frustration tho

  25. OriolesFan1986

    August 18, 2017 at 2:53 pm

    Correct me if I’m wrong but the way I remember it was injuries with McDonald. IMO he well worth the hype. Now, Hammonds, he was a huge bust. The Orioles also had many chances to trade Hammonds for players that could actually help the Orioles. I remember the Hammonds-Shawn Green proposed trade in Winter of 97, another in 96 that would’ve netted the Orioles, Jeremy Burnitz.

    The two that bother me the most are Jimenez because there were warning signs about him well before the Orioles signed him and they had to give up a possible pick that could’ve helped the Orioles or maybe not, though the money could’ve been spent better elsewhere. Davis also frustrated me because there were many warning signs on him too and I also feel that the team bid against themselves. I thought it would’ve better to let Davis walk and signed Cespedes.

    Letting Alomar and Palmeiro walk and replacing them with Clark and DeShields really stung. Daniel Cabrera was a huge source of frustration never seeming to get his control ever settled. Also Armando Bentiez always gave me fits.

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 7:12 pm

      McDonald was all about injuries and a shoulder that had so much mileage. But he had a solid career. Just not what people expected.

      • RhodyBob

        August 18, 2017 at 7:17 pm

        Bens short career and injuries were a huge disappointment but he was the real deal

  26. Johntr1984

    August 18, 2017 at 3:13 pm

    Jeff Reboulet. How could someone possibly hit Randy Johnson so well, and not hit well against anyone else!

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 7:13 pm

      Hahahaha. Can’t overthink that one.

  27. Schwarzstop

    August 18, 2017 at 6:59 pm

    I know I’m late to the bar… maybe I can still get a drink? How about Jeremy Guthrie and to a lesser degree – Chris Tillman. The record backs me up that Guthrie never lived up to expectations. Tillman, on the other hand… perhaps my personal experience clouds my judgement, but, when I was a 13 game season ticket holder, it seemed like Chris pitched 8 or 9 of those Sundays and was a loser or no decision more often than he was a stellar winner!

    • Dan Connolly

      August 18, 2017 at 7:15 pm

      Always serving. Beer your way. And Tillman I think has been pretty solid. But definitely some frustration this year.

    • OriolesFan1986

      August 18, 2017 at 7:17 pm

      Guthrie was got off waivers for almost nothing. I say we got a lot of out of him and were able to trade him for Jason Hammel who really made a difference in 2012.

  28. Camden Bird

    August 19, 2017 at 2:12 am

    I’ve been an Orioles fan since I was a kid back in the ’90s. So for me, there are a plethora of pitchers I could name.

    But for me, some of the most frustrating have been: Armando Benitez, Sidney Ponson, Daniel Cabrera, Chris Davis, and Ubaldo Jimenez.

    Benitez had the talent to be an all-world closer and perennial All-Star. This may seem like a stretch, but I believe he had the stuff to be a Lee Smith type of closer. Overpowering, intimidating, and borderline Hall of Famer. But come playoff time, he completely melted down. He seemed to always let his emotions get the best of him and was a total headcase.

    Ponson had the potential to be a solid middle of the rotation arm, but largely sucked. Cabrera and Jimenez are an awful lot alike; you never knew what you were going to get with every outing. Both showed flashes of brilliance, but could never put it together consistently. They were just as likely to throw a 1 or 2 hitter as they were getting rocked and needing to get pulled before the 5th inning.

    Chris Davis for all the reasons you listed above.

    P.S.- A sleeper candidate for me is one I can guarantee nobody will mention… Sammy Sosa in 2005. He was one of my all-time favorite players as a kid and a sure-fire Hall of Famer. When he came here, he was still a superstar and coming off 35 HR the year before. So, understandably, my excitement and expectations were through the roof. Instead, he massively disappointed and was bothered by a staff infection that seemed to never go away. And just our luck, after he took 2006 off and re-joined with the Texas Rangers, he actually had a pretty good 2007 season. Sammy had the talent (maybe? or was his entire career success due to PED’s?) to be a force in the middle of our lineup. But what he’s probably remembered for the most in Baltimore is thousands of fans turning his “SOSA #21” shirt into a “MARKAKIS #21” shirt the following season.

  29. Anton Pahomov

    August 21, 2017 at 9:55 am

    Nice article!

  30. Brady Runs Slow

    August 21, 2017 at 1:27 pm

    Glenn Davis is the obvious choice, but it’s hard to believe that we haven’t heard “Disco” Dan Ford mentioned. Horrible first year in Baltimore in 1982, and to start off 1983 makes an error on Opening Day. So much was expected of him, and he never really delivered.

  31. Marshall

    August 22, 2017 at 11:57 am

    This was a fantastic tap-in question. I’m sorry I missed it while I was traveling. Some great answers in here. I’m going to throw in one I haven’t seen yet… Rafael Palmeiro.

    I remember being so incredibly excited when we signed him in 94 or so. He was an absolute rock in the lineup (silver sluggers) and in the field (golden gloves). He was part of the last playoff run that we had before this recent stretch. Then he took less money to go back to Texas. It was very frustrating as a fan of the team. He came back in ’04 and I remember him saying he shouldn’t have left and he was older and wiser or some such. Back on the Palmeiro train! He got his 3000th hit & 500th HR. Then in the midst of the pride of accomplishments and the celebration of his career, suspension. Scandals. Steroids. Congress. Blackball.

    …and one of the greatest players in baseball faded into obscurity.

    All-time.

    -M

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