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Etch is no longer Aberdeen's manager

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My sources tell me Andy Etchebarren will no longer be the manager of the Aberdeen Ironbirds.

http://lordelevation.blogspot.com/

I expect the organization will announce it in the next few days.

This isn't necessarily a bad thing...I have it on reasonably good authority that he wasn't universally liked because of his gruff attitude.

This also should be on the Minor League board.

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Doc,

I put it on here just because of his background as an Oriole player. It'll probably get moved.

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Etch was my manager at fantasy camp in '96. Loved playing for him for the week and didn't find him at all "gruff." But then, I was a paying customer and his job didn't depend on my performance or development. He put me in CF for a game and I told him that with his eye for talent, it was no wonder he'd never managed in the majors - and, unlikely that he ever would.

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My sources tell me Andy Etchebarren will no longer be the manager of the Aberdeen Ironbirds.

http://lordelevation.blogspot.com/

I expect the organization will announce it in the next few days.

Can't say that I'm horribly disappointed. While he's an old O from way back, his track record as a minor league manager wasn't that great. Also given the horrible track record of this organization's player development over the last 20+ years, I wouldn't be upset if more heads fell over the next few weeks. Managers and coaches at the minor league level have to share some of the responsibility for failing to produce major league talent in this organization.

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Once you get through that gruff exterior, I had a great relationship with Etch. I loved chatting with him because he gave honest assessments of his players and usually they were right on. I still remember a week into Jayson Werth's Bowie year Etch said, "He's not a major league catcher, period."

Etch was old school on a lot of things, but I'll miss him if he doesn't come back in some type of role.

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Once you get through that gruff exterior, I had a great relationship with Etch. I loved chatting with him because he gave honest assessments of his players and usually they were right on. I still remember a week into Jayson Werth's Bowie year Etch said, "He's not a major league catcher, period."

Etch was old school on a lot of things, but I'll miss him if he doesn't come back in some type of role.

Just curious but did you ever ask him why the Orioles pitchers throughout the system including the major league club seem to have so many arm ailments and injuries? I would love to hear his explanation for that.

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I guess its just MacPhail reminding everyone who the boss is.

Wha?!?! If the organization feels like he isn't/wasn't getting the job done, then it's their OBLIGATION to make a change. It has nothing to do with MacPhail reminding everyone he's in charge.

Etch was without a doubt a throwback manager. He smokes Marlboros, cusses like a sailor, and tells it like it is. His gruff exterior can be intimidating and he keeps you on your toes talking baseball, but I personally thought he was the perfect guy to manage at the short-season A level, almost like a drill instructor. I thought his decision to pull Matt Angle in the last game of the season to ensure he finished above .300 was awesome as were his post-game comments. He basically said that hitting .300 in your first professional season is a huge accomplishment, Matt earned it, and he didn't want some highlight-reel play or situational hitting to ruin it. He also told me that Matt wasn't entirely cool with it, and it was all the more reason he deserved it.

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Good to see another fantasy camper posting here. Etch was my manager twice in the last 6 years in Sarasota. Gary Kendall was his coach both years. Etch was the Etch described in previous posts - gruff. He had one of the campers make out the lineup cards and handle the pitchers ... in other words, he appeared completely disinterested.

Gary on the other hand always worked with the campers, whether on hitting, defense, baserunning, whatever. He made me and the other campers better baseball players than we were when we started the week.

In my opinion Gary is one of the class acts in the organization. Anywhere he's managing or coaching is going to benefit.

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I tend to make my determinations about who should play, and when, for the Orioles based on my interactions with players on the "Orioles' Cruise" every year.

Seriously - I get that there are differences between personalities, but I'm not sure we can base anything on fantasy-camp behavior. As NCRaven noted, I might add.

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Kendall does seem like a fantasic motivator.

Etch reminded me of a Rick Dempsey, Elrod type who just hung aorund forever because he happened to play for hte team at one point.

Hopefully Kendall will be on the Orioles staff at one point.

http://lordelevation.blogspot.com/

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For a number of years...self centered players who were more interested in "me" versus "team" have not liked Etch. Covering the O's for 9 years, I can tell you Andy may have been "gruff" but he always looked out for his players, including the ones who would bad mouth him.

I would not be surprised if Andy not being next year's manager at Aberdeen was more his idea than the Orioles. Andy confided in me after his first year as manager at Aberdeen, that he did not want to come back and he would prefer working with catchers throughout the system...but he kept coming back because the front office asked him to remain the Ironbirds manager. He was a very good example for younger players as what it was like playing for a real old-school baseball man. Keep in mind that the lower the team...the more it is stocked with "roster fillers" or players who have no chance of getting beyond Frederick, let alone the majors. These players will often complain about playing time, managers and coaches.

Andy did strike a compromise with the front office and was a roving catcher instructor for April and May before taking over the Ironbirds for the past three or four years.

Some players have actually showed up at Andy's home in Florida before the start of spring training for private catching lessons.

Andy's pluses out weighed any perception of "old school" misuses.

Actually Andy's tenure as an A, AA and AAA manager with the O's is rather remarkable.

Concerning the poster questioning the arm injuries in the O's system...this is a problem across baseball and not just an Oriole problem. One of the reasons you hear so much about it now is that medically so much more can be done...30 and 40 years ago pitchers who blew out their arms and elbows simply were said to have had "dead arms" and quit playing (there are a few exceptions like Moe Drabowsky, Curt Simmons and others who could locate and change speeds with pitches between 60 and 70 mph).

John Hoffmann

St. Louis

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