Answers to your Orioles questions, Part 2 - BaltimoreBaseball.com

Rich Dubroff

Answers to your Orioles questions, Part 2

John Means no-hitter
Photo credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

It’s time for the second part of our monthly mailbag. Again, I appreciate all the questions, which have been edited for clarity, length and style.

Question: I’m a lifetime Orioles fan since (1966), and I was wondering why the Orioles didn’t do anything when Elrod Hendricks passed away.  I always thought they should have done something to give Mrs. Hendricks some closure. My idea is to rename the bullpen area after him and put his name on the big wall in center field with the number 44. I think the fans would appreciate it, too. From: Doug Wagstaff via email

Answer: Doug, I was surprised to find out that there’s not a plaque in the bullpen honoring Elrod. There is one marking Jesse Orosco setting a record for most games pitched in the bullpen.

Elrod was an important member of the organization, as you write, for many years, and fans loved his accessibility and community engagement. Along with Cal Ripken Sr. (7) and Mike Flanagan (46), Hendricks’ number is unofficially retired. No one has worn it since he died.

I think he should be honored but since there’s no sign on the center field wall for the retired numbers of Eddie Murray, Jim Palmer, Cal Ripken Jr., Brooks Robinson, Frank Robinson and Earl Weaver, I don’t think that will happen for Elrod.

Question: Rich, it’s great to see fans in the seats during Oriole games, even if it’s in small numbers. If I remember reading correctly earlier this year, the rough number of fans allowed in Orioles Park this season will be around 11,000 per game.  So I was wondering this: Are the luxury box counts included in this 11,000?  And how are the boxes being sold? Are a majority of them used each game?  From: Boog Robinson Robinson via email

Answer: Ken, you are correct, the capacity will be around 11,000 this season. Yes, luxury boxes are included in the count. The Orioles have combined two boxes into one in many cases and, although they don’t release the number that are sold for each game, they advertise the availability of boxes for per-game sale. So, if you want to come up from Texas and bring 10 or 20 of your closest friends, you can buy a box for a game.

Question: Do you plan to do a monthly prospect list similar to previous years where you indicate who is hot and cold? From: cgarcia via BaltimoreBaseball.com

Answer: You’re referring to the “Dean’s Dozen” list compiled by Dean Jones, who wrote about minor leagues for the first few years of our site.

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Dean, who is the father of three young boys, decided that he didn’t have time to juggle a full-time job, fatherhood and minor league coverage, so we retired the rankings as well as who was hot and cold.

This year, we have added Todd Karpovich, who will write about the minor leagues each Monday, and I’ll be contributing occasional minor league pieces when I can.

We know there’s intense interest in the minor leagues, and I’ve written stories about nearly all the top prospects, and we’ll keep that coverage coming.

Question: When l saw the Orioles were in the process of hiring a new front office and manager I thought these guys would be fun to root for. I was right.

But I’m getting a little discouraged because any time someone does well people start talking about trading them —  John Means, Matt Harvey being the most recent.

I see a young team that has chance to win this year. They have a better-than-average outfield, better-than-average bullpen, an  underrated infield, and starting pitching that is just one or two pieces away from being pretty decent. From: California Oriole Fan via email

Answer: Even after Means’ no-hitter, the Orioles were still a game under .500 at 15-16, and heading into Saturday night’s game are 15-17.  The AL East is still a difficult division, though the Rays’ and Yankees’ records aren’t as strong as expected.

The Orioles still have holes in the infield, particularly at second base, and they’re eagerly awaiting the arrival of catcher Adley Rutschman. Beyond Means and Harvey, the starting pitching lacks experience, so I would say they’re more than one or two pieces away, but they’re in better shape than they were two years ago, and still another year or two away from contention.

Question:  A look at the divisions in MLB shows a lot of mediocrity. I’m not sure any teams are going to run away this season. With that being the case, if the O’s find themselves hovering around .500 in July, do you think there’s any chance they’d make moves to enhance a possible playoff run? I’m talking about either calling up prospects in July or trading some for a potential solid starter. From: Dave Gruber via email

Answer: Dave, if the Orioles are around .500 in July, I don’t think they’ll be buyers. I think that they would be happy with the record but wouldn’t trade away prospects for veterans. That’s for when they’re serious contenders, which I think is a year or two away.

Prospects will be called up along the way, as they’ve already done, but I would be surprised to see Rutschman that soon, though Yusniel Diaz could arrive then.

Question:  Could you list the prospects received in trades for front-line ex-Orioles.  The latter include Britton, Machado, Schoop, Villar, Bundy, Gausman, Castro, Cobb, Cashner, Givens, Brach, O’Day, Milone, and Bleier.  I would be interested in seeing how many of the prospects acquired are on the MLB roster or are on our farm teams. Then we can compare the list to those who have been released, waived, etc.  This would be an interesting measure of how the rebuild is going. From: Steve Cohen via email

Answer: Steve, I’m going to divide the rebuild into the July 2018 trades and the ones made by Mike Elias in 2019 and 2020.

In the deals made by Dan Duquette for Zack Britton, Kevin Gausman, Manny Machado, Darren O’Day and Jonathan Schoop, the Orioles acquired 15 players. Brad Brach was traded for international  bonus money.

Two of them, Dean Kremer and Dillon Tate, are on the major league roster. Four players — Cody Carroll, Evan Phillips, Josh Rogers and Bruce Zimmermann — have already played for the Orioles and are on Norfolk’s roster. Three others — Rylan Bannon, Brett Cumberland and Yusniel Diaz — are on Norfolk’s roster but haven’t played for the Orioles. JC Encarnacion is on Delmarva’s roster.

Three players — Luis Ortiz, Breyvic Valera and Jonathan Villar — played for the Orioles and are no longer on the roster. Ortiz was released and is with the Texas organization, Valera sold to San Francisco and Villar traded. Jean Carmona, obtained with Ortiz and Villar for Schoop, is no longer with the organization.

One player, Zach Pop, was selected by Miami in the Rule 5 draft and is with the Marlins.

Seventeen players were obtained for Bleier, Bundy, Cashner, Castro, Cobb, Givens, Milone, Villar and José Iglesias, who you didn’t name. These players are all in the Orioles’ system.

One of the four pitchers obtained for Bundy, Isaac Mattson, made his major league debut on Friday night but was sent to Norfolk after the game. Infielder Tyler Nevin, who came in the trade for Givens, is at Norfolk. So is infielder Jahmai Jones from the Cobb deal.

The other most noted prospects, infielder Terrin Vavra (Givens), pitcher Ryan Bradish (Bundy) and Kevin Smith (Castro) are at Bowie.

The others are at Aberdeen, Delmarva, or at camps preparing to play in the Complex League in Sarasota or the Dominican Summer League.

Follow Rich Dubroff on Twitter @RichDubroffMLB

 

35 Comments

35 Comments

  1. Boog Robinson Robinson

    May 8, 2021 at 2:22 pm

    Great question by Mr. Cohen and a very nice recap (and I’m sure some hard work) by our hero Rich.

    I may have to cut and paste all those names for my own future reference!!

    Good question.

    And Rich, I can only wish that I could afford one of those boxes on my pension and 401. The best crab cakes I’ve EVER had came via OPACY room service to one of the suites back in the 90s.

    • Jack Gibbons

      May 8, 2021 at 3:06 pm

      Ken, I’m biased, but I appreciate how conscientious Rich is in his coverage of the Orioles and how much he appreciates our readers. Even during the offseason, he makes sure there is something new on BaltimoreBaseball.com every day.

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        May 8, 2021 at 4:36 pm

        I’ve noticed! And I read him most every day as well.

    • Orioleschatter

      May 9, 2021 at 1:41 pm

      I agree. Thank you Rich for your in depth response.

      My only comment is that if you think the Orioles are a year of two away, they need to start holding on to their better pitchers. They are never going to be respectable if they keep throwing triple A pitching out there.

  2. Icterus fan

    May 8, 2021 at 2:41 pm

    Rich, thanks for your great coverage and ability to dig deep into so many things Orioles.

    We should start a separate thread for best crab cake competition. Mine came from Smith Island.

    • dlgruber1

      May 8, 2021 at 3:29 pm

      True story, I’m at a Colts game in 1971 and my grandfather buys me a crab cake. I didn’t like it. He says “after the game we’ll get a real crab cake”. So after the game we stop at a restaurant, it was called Thompson’s, he ordered me another crab cake which I also didn’t like. Exasperated, he tells me “if you don’t like a Thompson’s crab cake you’ll never like a crab cake”. Which turned out to be true. So when I go to OPACY I might not eat a crab cake but I sure love the bags of peanuts I buy across the street that last me the entire game.

    • Rich Dubroff

      May 8, 2021 at 3:53 pm

      Icterus, several months ago, during the offseason, I wrote about places for out of towners to eat in Baltimore. The two best crab cakes I’ve eaten are from Koco’s and Jimmy’s. Also worth mentioning are Faidley’s, which isn’t far from the ballpark, Costas Inn, which has terrific steamed crabs, G&M, the Local Oyster, LP Steamers, Pappas and Wicked Sisters. My pregame crab cake dinner was purchased from Wicked Sisters tonight.

      I’ve never been to Smith Island, but it’s on my list.

      Dave, unfortunately you can’t bring food into the ballpark this season.

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      May 8, 2021 at 4:16 pm

      I can see by other responses, that my not growing up (or ever living) in Bal’more puts me a a great disadvantage in the awesome crab cake eating department.

      • Rich Dubroff

        May 8, 2021 at 5:39 pm

        Many of the crab cake places I’ve referred to sell by mail order. You may want to try to make up for lost time.

    • CalsPals

      May 8, 2021 at 4:28 pm

      My wife & I had some just down the street at a type of market, Faidleys I believe, our first & they were delicious…go O’s…

    • Icterus fan

      May 8, 2021 at 4:37 pm

      Heard good things about Pappas, and I’ve had Faidleys many times. Delicious! Too bad they are so danged expensive, eh?

      • Rich Dubroff

        May 8, 2021 at 5:37 pm

        Crab is very expensive this year, very expensive.

        • WorldlyView

          May 9, 2021 at 2:46 pm

          REAL baseball fans eat hot dogs .

  3. Phil770

    May 8, 2021 at 3:09 pm

    Rich, Thanks or the run down of players traded, acquired and status. Agree with BRR, a lot of work. I find it interesting that of players traded by DD, only one is with the team to which he was traded (Britton). Three players are with their 3rd team (two other organizations after the ones to which they were traded by the O’s) Gausman, Schoop, and Brach.

    • Rich Dubroff

      May 8, 2021 at 3:44 pm

      You’re welcome, Phil. Actually, Brach just signed with the Reds organization, his fifth since leaving the Orioles. He was with Kansas City earlier this season, but didn’t pitch in a game.

    • Boog Robinson Robinson

      May 8, 2021 at 4:20 pm

      I think Duquette’s trades are going to prove much less productive than those Elias has made.

      I think maybe Dan’s were done much more hastily and without near as much thought and preparation. It’s almost like he knew he was on his way out and was simply pulling strings that someone else wanted pulled during a fire sale… if that makes sense.

      Elias seems to have done well with his.

      • Phil770

        May 9, 2021 at 8:38 am

        Actually, I was poi ting out that teams traded for our front line players and did not retain them. Os still have the players in the mix. Not a slam dunk success, but still possible for a solid return.

      • Baltimore Castaway

        May 9, 2021 at 11:35 am

        BRR,

        The results of Duquette’s trades may look like he didn’t put much thought into them but it is important to also remember that he made the trades for Machado and Britton in their Walk Years–which severely reduced the value he could command in a return of talent. If Angelos allowed him to trade Machado and Britton (which I believe is what Duquette wanted to do) a year or two earlier we would have seen a completely different return of talent.

    • Icterus fan

      May 8, 2021 at 4:35 pm

      Agree Duquette seemed to be plugging holes with available free agents. The current team philosophy seems much more intentional and strategic. Better end product (hopefully) but longer to wait.

      • Boog Robinson Robinson

        May 8, 2021 at 7:07 pm

        Well that’s not exactly what I was saying ….

  4. Bumble bee

    May 8, 2021 at 4:28 pm

    Is it time now to get a little excited with our team. Good bull pen , an ok sometimes starting pitchers and a starting line up that has at least four good hitters. It’s something to root for now a days. It’s just gonna get better. Go orioles

  5. Massmonster

    May 8, 2021 at 5:57 pm

    Harvey continues to prove he’s back;not his best stuff didn’t feel well yet with better fielding he would of won his 4th straight

  6. Massmonster

    May 8, 2021 at 6:03 pm

    it will change hopefully but none of the trades thus far seem to be panning out

  7. Bhoffman1

    May 8, 2021 at 6:42 pm

    Rich many years as a young man I filmed the WS with my day when the O’s played the Pirates at Memorial Park . The O’ served the press crab cakes, giant shrimp and oysters it was a feast. When we arrived in Pittsburg we had cheese sandwiches

    • Bhoffman1

      May 8, 2021 at 6:45 pm

      Dad

    • Rich Dubroff

      May 8, 2021 at 7:50 pm

      Bruce, I’m glad you remember those days. That doesn’t happen now.

    • Icterus fan

      May 8, 2021 at 8:02 pm

      If we are talking about the 1979 World Series, I was at Memorial Stadium for game 6.
      What a disappointment. I still remember The Pirates theme song that year was “We are Family”.
      Yuck.

    • Bhoffman1

      May 8, 2021 at 9:04 pm

      Yes 79, i use to do the official WS film with my dad for MLB before video

    • Bhoffman1

      May 8, 2021 at 9:06 pm

      Yeah every time Stargell would go to bat that song would come on.

    • CalsPals

      May 8, 2021 at 9:26 pm

      Thanks for sharing, cool story…go O’s…

  8. geevee3

    May 8, 2021 at 9:59 pm

    Did I just hear someone COMPLAIN about being at a World Series Game in Baltimore? Hush your mouth.

  9. Bman

    May 9, 2021 at 1:10 am

    What happened to Cody seclock today?

  10. Massmonster

    May 9, 2021 at 9:30 am

    The O’s do not deserve the rep as a losing franchise .Very recently taking into acct the 100+ years of Baseball History the O’s won more games in a 5 year period than any American League team -2013-2017: more than the R Sox ,Yankees. or any A.L. team: further more they were tied with the Washington Nationals for most wins in Baseball! yet they are derided as a losing franchise.Look at the list of teams that haven’t been in the playoffs for 10+ years or haven’t even had a winning record! 2 and1/2 years is not a remotely long rebuilding period unless your the YANKS or R. Sox and in the period of 2013-2017 the O’s won the most games in BB despite being in the American East!!!!!!

  11. Massmonster

    May 9, 2021 at 9:53 am

    an ademdom to my comment.The last time the YANKS won the World Series was -12-! years ago yet living in CT. all we hear about is the World Champion to be Yankees!!!!

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