Uncertainty follows Orioles to New York as they lose to Yankees - BaltimoreBaseball.com
Rich Dubroff

Uncertainty follows Orioles to New York as they lose to Yankees


NEW YORK—As the Orioles began their final road trip of the season, the futures of the two top decision-makers in the organization was still in question.

According to a report in USA Today, manager Buck Showalter is not expected to return as Orioles manager in 2019. Before Friday night’s game, which the Orioles lost to the New York Yankees, 10-8, Showalter said that he hadn’t been told whether he’d be back next year.

Dan Duquette, who engineered the Orioles’ series of trades in July, is expected to receive an extension, according to USA Today. Duquette, who has accompanied the team on their final road trip to New York and Boston, said that his understanding was that Orioles management would make decisions on the leadership team at the conclusion of the season.

Ramirez shelled

Yefry Ramirez allowed six runs in 3 2/3 innings. The big hits were Didi Gregorius’ two-run homer in the first and Aaron Hicks’ two-run blow in the fourth.

His catcher, Austin Wynns, took the blame for Ramirez’s bad night.

“Just trying to execute pitches and just trying to be on the same page,” Wynns said. “We gave up those runs, those home runs, just can’t let them happen. This is my fault. I put those down. We didn’t execute.”

Ramirez had a cut on his finger, according to Showalter, but said it didn’t bother him.

“Right now, it’s really not bothering me that much, but in that very last inning, that’s when I felt it,” Ramirez said through a translator. “It really bothered me for that inning.”

Wynns had two passed balls. In his first 35 games behind the plate, he had only one.

“It was unacceptable with those passed balls,” Wynns said. “We had a little hiccup with the signs, and then I missed that other one. Just … yeah, can’t happen. Just bottom line with our pitching. We have to get ahead early, put them away. Right now, we’re like nitpicking. We put ourselves in situations where we just don’t execute. That’s the big word right there, execution. We need to get better at that and this game’s on me, this game’s on me.”

The Orioles are 44-109.

Davis cratering, Stewart steaming

Early this month, it looked as if Chris Davis had finally began to show signs of improvement. On Sept. 5, he was hitting .180, which was his highest point since May 11.

Davis was hitless in his last two at-bats in the Sept. 5 game,  and that started him downhill. He’s 1-for-34 with 17 strikeouts and is batting .170

He struck out four times, equaling a season-high.

“It’s a tough night for him,” Showalter said. He said that he’s considering resting him again.

“We’ve tried that. We’ve tried giving him some time here and there,” Showalter said. “It’s something we consider from day to day. We’ll consider what’s the best foot forward tomorrow.”

Showalter has been vexed with questions about Davis all season long, and it’s bothered him that nothing seems to work.

“Chris will have a couple of good games where you keep thinking that he’s going to get it going,” Showalter said. “He just can’t string it together consistently. It’s been a challenge for him most of the season.”

DJ Stewart was hitless in his first 13 at-bats, but he’s getting used to major league pitching and has homered in his last two games.

Stewart is 4-for-20.

“He likes to play, he likes to compete and he’s always on,” Showalter said. “He doesn’t have an off button and those type of people have a chance to be as good as they’re capable of being. And he’s respectful of it. You can tell he really enjoys being here, but he’s not in awe of it. He’s got some confidence in his ability. It’s been fun to watch.”

Wynns and Renato Nunez also homered for the Orioles. They lost for the fourth time this year when scoring eight or more runs.

Cobb on Sunday

Alex Cobb, who has been hampered by a blister on the middle finger of his right hand, will get his first start since leaving after two innings on Sept. 11. If Cobb gets through the start, he’ll get another one, perhaps Sept 28 against Houston.

Although Cobb has had a mostly forgettable season, he says that it’s important to remember that there is something to play for.

“I think the biggest thing for us as an organization – the team obviously hasn’t met the expectations,” Cobb said.

“We’re far beyond all that. I think it’s important to show your professionalism when you’re a team in the situation that we’re in. I remember being on the 2011 Rays team when the Orioles beat the Red Sox and how much that affected the outcome of everything. So I think there’s due diligence on our part to go out there and be professional and compete to the best of our ability.

“Everybody appreciates that, whether you’re the team that you’re playing against or you’re the team that is relying on you to play spoiler. Whatever the case may be, obviously that moment stuck out and it will for the rest of my career, and the way we felt about the Orioles that time when they took care of their business and won a game that got us into the playoffs. So, I always kind of feel like no matter what situation you’re in, you want to be the best team you can be, the most competitive team could can be.”

14 Comments

14 Comments

  1. deqalt

    September 22, 2018 at 8:08 am

    I think it is a head scratcher in that report it was mentioned that the chances of Dan returning were increasing. Is Dan not the architect of putting together this all or noting lineup with a terrible OBP? Buck can only work with what he’s been given. Why is Buck to blame with having to play players like Colby Rasmus? Buck gave his heart and soul to this city and deserves better. Do you really want a new manager to come in and lose for the next 2-3 seasons? To be honest it’s the manager you hire right as your ready to take off. This organization hasn’t hit bottom yet

    • VICTORTEE

      September 22, 2018 at 9:54 am

      How about Buck having to coddle useless rule 5 players every year that Dan saddled him with?

      Every year through 2016 the O’s outperformed their Pecota rating. Therefore baseball “experts” thought Buck managed better than Dan put together teams.

      Go Buck!

      And Dan should go! Maybe he can be the batboy in his preferred city of Toronto.

      • Rich Dubroff

        September 22, 2018 at 6:11 pm

        Victortee, nothing has been officially decided, yet.

    • Rich Dubroff

      September 22, 2018 at 6:10 pm

      Deqalt, if this isn’t bottom, i don’t know what bottom is.

  2. deqalt

    September 22, 2018 at 8:15 am

    The article mentions that the front office was impressed with the trades Dan made. Do we really know if they were good trades yet? High volume for sure, but was it really that hard to trade a Manny, Schoop, and Gausman?

    • cedar

      September 22, 2018 at 9:53 am

      Trades involving veterans for prospects are measured multiple times. When those trades happened, the pundits all applauded the Orioles moves. Another measurement will be taken next July, and another in 2020. They’ll all be different. But today, yes those were all good trades.

      • VICTORTEE

        September 22, 2018 at 9:59 am

        The pundits did not all applaud the moves. Read some prospect rating publications and see how mediocre most of the prospects we got are rated. And the NL team I follow is the Braves. None of the guys we got from them were ever rated by Braves management or anyone who follows the Braves as serious prospects.

      • Rich Dubroff

        September 22, 2018 at 6:12 pm

        Cedar, I gave an end-of-season breakdown on the trades yesterday.

  3. musicmanjr

    September 22, 2018 at 9:15 am

    Managers are hired to lead teams to successful seasons. The Texas Rangers just fired Jeff Banister. Banister was hired before the 2015 season and led the club to back-to-back first place finishes in the American League West. The Rangers are in last place in 2018 and Texas let him go. Buck Showalter led the O’s to back-to-back last place finishes in the American League East. The birds were picked to finish in last place. However, no one (Sports Illustrated, PECOTA, Bleacher Report) predicted the Orioles to win less than 70 games in 2018. We went 75-87 in 2017. This Orioles team won’t even win 50 games.

    This is the worst team since the team moved to Baltimore. I realize that we are in a rebuilding mode. However, Buck Showalter lost this team a long time ago. It’s time to start a managerial search. Dusty Baker, Joe Girardi: are you listening?

    • Rich Dubroff

      September 22, 2018 at 6:15 pm

      A managerial search would be fascinating, musicman.

  4. deqalt

    September 22, 2018 at 9:25 am

    Music, I don’t disagree with you until you mentioned Girardi and Dusty. Good grief if your going to change go young and up n’ incoming. Buck is a better manager than both of them. Girardi got fired solely because he can’t relate to young players. Just as the new wave of Yankees came on he was canned. Dusty nice guy, but there not winning anything soon don’t need a fossil or re-tread. Go young! How about JJ Hardy?

  5. Wade Warren

    September 22, 2018 at 9:53 am

    I wonder if Cal Ripken Jr could be managing the Orioles next year? If not bring Buck back

    • Rich Dubroff

      September 22, 2018 at 6:18 pm

      Wade, I’m not sure either Cal or Buck will be managing the team in 2019.

  6. Big bird 64

    September 23, 2018 at 12:54 pm

    I’m torn. Buck has always been a great manager, but you can only manage what you’re given. I think if Buck has to go, so should Duquette. If a new GM comes aboard, they most likely will want to pick their own manager. In either scenario, it looks like Buck’s a goner.

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