Results tagged ‘ Aaron Boone ’

Baltimore Orioles need to reverse-scout their own pitchers

The Baltimore Orioles did a bit of a number on themselves this evening. Not by what they did in the game, but by what they didn’t do. It was obvious that Texas had studied and scouted Orioles’ starter Aaron Brooks ad hoc. And the Orioles played right into the trap of not scouting their own people. Brooks’ line: 2.2 IP, 6 H, 7 R (6 earned), 1 BB, 3 K.

Brooks loaded the bases in the first inning before even recording an out. He managed to induce a comebacker, but his throw home was wide of the bag. Now the good news was that Brooks retired the final three hitters in the inning 1-2-3. The bad news was that came after an RBI-single, and a grand slam which gave Texas a 6-0 lead.

However the O’s tried to battle back. Anthony Santander‘s RBI-single in the last of the first cut the lead to 6-1. Trey Mancini would later score on a wild pitch, and Mason Williams‘ sac fly-RBI would cut the lead to 6-3. It looked like a night for the offenses.

Texas would tack on three additional runs before the game ended. Rio Ruiz would also smack a solo homer. The Birds would end up falling in this one, 9-4 – due in large part to a wild first inning.

But what happened in that first inning which causes me to talk about scouting or lack thereof? Brooks has actually been fairly solid of late in the past couple of weeks. That’s been due in large part to his changeups being so deadly. He’s really mastered the art of the changeup very well.

But the problem is that he’s gone to the well too many times. Texas obviously felt that Brooks was going to rely on his changeup early in the game; that’s probably what their scouts told them. They trusted their scouting, and it paid off with a big inning right out of the gate.

So again, would it not behoove the Orioles to in effect scour their own players? Maybe have their scouts look at games as if they were scouting another team for the O’s, but in essence to have them report on what they’re noticing about the Orioles? Because dipping into the well once too often on changeups is something that a scout would have noticed. Texas’ game plan was to expect the changeup early. Their hitters did just that, and the Orioles did their part to ensure that the changeups came in early and often.

The series concludes tomorrow afternoon at Camden Yards. Asher Wojchiekowski gets the call for the O’s, and he’ll be opposed by Texas’ Mike Minor. Game time is set for just after 1 PM.

Baltimore Orioles: Is New York onto something?

I cover the Baltimore Orioles, but I’ve made my view of New York hiring Aaron Boone very clear. Boone’s a good baseball guy and he comes from a good baseball family. In fact, he was probably a born manager. But at this point he has no experience in the job.

First off, that’s sort of a slap in the fact to guys who have worked their way up the minor leagues or even to become a base coach, bench coach, etc. at the big league level. There are deserving candidates who were passed over in favor of Boone. Guys who have paid their dues in going up the coaching ranks, and are now having to watch an unknown commodity get a shot. That has to be a tough pill to swallow.

But could the joke be on people such as myself? People who think this is a reckless move? I remember the great Chuck Thompson’s speech upon accepting the Ford C. Frick Award and being inducted into the Hall of Fame. He started out by saying that his father had told him once that it’s possible to get so close to the forest that you can’t see the trees…

…which in general is good advice. Could that apply here? I mean – is it possible that perhaps guys who have been coaches for some times have become so jaded by how things are supposed to work that they can’t think outside the box enough to be innovative?

In short, yes it’s possible. Plenty of people would point to the Orioles’ Showalter, and how he opted not to use Britton in the AL Wild Card game in 2016. However while there could be legitimate criticism of someone who’s done a job or been a part of something for too long, I’m not sure that argument totally flies here.

I’ve never been a CEO of a company. Not in this life, not ever. So does that mean that the next time Northrup Grumman or Lockheed Martin has a vacancy at the top spot I should be considered? I’m fresh and green, and I won’t be jaded by how things are supposed to work.

Point being, that’s a very subjective argument. I do in fact have about as much experience being a CEO as Aaron Boone does as a coach. Is it possible that in the future analysts will be praising this hire as brilliant? Sure it is. Just don’t hold your breath for too long.

Baltimore Orioles’ rival shaking things up

One of the Baltimore Orioles’ fellow AL East teams is doing everything it can to shake things up this off season. The New York Yankees parted ways with Joe Girardi, a World Series champion manager. Now they’re going even more out of the box with his replacement.

Late Friday it was announced that they were going to hire Aaron Boone as their manager. Boone of course comes from a family rich in baseball lore, and he briefly played for New York in 2003. Of course everyone remembers his walk off home run in game seven of the 2003 ALCS to send New York to the World Series in lieu of Boston. For a guy who only played in 54 games for NY, that’s a great way to be remembered.

But there’s one problem; Boone’s never set foot on a baseball diamond as a coach at any level – much less in the big leagues. I’ve written before about how teams seem to be wanting to go with youth in the dugout as opposed to tenured and respected managers. That’s certainly what Houston did, and Washington, Boston, and and others have followed suit.

But at least the people who were hired in those cities were guys who had worked their way through the minors and up the coaching ranks. Aaron Boone’s never coached, as I said above. And again as I’ve said before, I’m not a fan of the youth movement. But hiring a guy who’s never coached before? That’s strange.

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