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A year ago, the O's were 43-40 after 83 games


Frobby

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If you guys can't see that this organization is in a much better place than it was 3 years ago, then I'm not sure what to say to you.

It's obviously not good enough at the major league level. That I agree with.

At some point, I have to look at the big picture a little bit, but if it fits your agenda or if it makes you feel better to jump up and down and stomp your feet, go nuts.

The big picture huh? Tell me when its ready to compete with Boston and NY for the division. Can you honestly say we'll be better than either of them within say 5 years? We cant even compete with Jays or Rays.

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It is amazing how many normally sane people are jumping off the ship because of a the win-loss reocrd of this team. MacPhail has said 2011 all along. Rebuilding is painul if done correctly and we are experiencing the pain right now.

However, I see Bergesen, Reimold, Wieters getting their feet wet with some success and I see Jones becoming an All-Star. I see Hernandez and Berken show they should have some role on a big league staff and I see Matusz, Arrieta and Tillman all having great years in the minors.

I see the next wave of arms doing well down on the farm and I see Brandon Synder showing he should be a force to be reckoned with shortly.

I see an over seas scouting bureau tapping into the Japanese market and I hear the Orioles are contenders for a top Dominican talent.

I see upgrades to Mora and possibly Huff next season and I see a rotation that will include Matusz, Tillman, Arrieta, Bergesen and possibly Britton or Patton or Hernandez or possibly Hobgood one day.

Yes my friends, we are on the right path even if that pass has to take us deeper into the abyss in the near future.

Great post!

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I'm glad to see you post as often as you do. There are so many irrational and doomsday posters that this place is sometimes unbearable. Anyway, thanks for adding a little logic and rational thought to this place.

I have my moments watching the day to day as well, I don't want to come off as some high horse riding jerk with this... but big picture, things are much better.

Losing sucks, but frankly I expected this year. Now, if they tank in the second half of the year, I'll be disappointed.

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It is amazing how many normally sane people are jumping off the ship because of a the win-loss reocrd of this team. MacPhail has said 2011 all along. Rebuilding is painul if done correctly and we are experiencing the pain right now.

However, I see Bergesen, Reimold, Wieters getting their feet wet with some success and I see Jones becoming an All-Star. I see Hernandez and Berken show they should have some role on a big league staff and I see Matusz, Arrieta and Tillman all having great years in the minors.

I see the next wave of arms doing well down on the farm and I see Brandon Synder showing he should be a force to be reckoned with shortly.

I see an over seas scouting bureau tapping into the Japanese market and I hear the Orioles are contenders for a top Dominican talent.

Yes my friends, we are on the right path even if that pass has to take us deeper into the abyss in the near future.

Six rep birds and this guy Tony thinks he knows a thing or two. :D

Well, me thinks he does.

I've said this before and will say it again, whether you like it or not, this season is NOT about the record. It's about the individual steps forward. I know we have been saying this for some time, but it remains the refrain. You have no choice but to give it more time.

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I have my moments watching the day to day as well, I don't want to come off as some high horse riding jerk with this... but big picture, things are much better.

Losing sucks, but frankly I expected this year. Now, if they tank in the second half of the year, I'll be disappointed.

Yeah, everyone *****es and complains about the team, but some just refuse to let go of the smallest gripes.

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If you guys can't see that this organization is in a much better place than it was 3 years ago, then I'm not sure what to say to you.

It's obviously not good enough at the major league level. That I agree with.

At some point, I have to look at the big picture a little bit, but if it fits your agenda or if it makes you feel better to jump up and down and stomp your feet, go nuts.

I think most of us would agree that we're better off than we were 3 years ago. But I think some of us are looking at what we have on the field and what we have coming through the system and questioning whether the organization is really going to be in a position to contend in 2011-2012.

The Big Three have been spectacular this season in the minors, and the improvement of Bergesen, Hernandez and Reimold has been an unexpected boost to the team's future prospects. But I think most of us were assuming that Markakis would be a perennial all-star and Gold Glove right fielder, and right now that doesn't look like a safe assumption.

I think we were assuming that Adam Jones was a long-term answer in CF, and despite his progress with the bat that doesn't look like a safe assumption either because of questions about his glove.

We were assuming that Chris Ray would come back strong and be a major part of the bullpen. That's probably not ever going to happen now, and the bullpen is suddenly looking like a long-term problem for the organization.

I think we were hoping that guys like Huff and Guthrie would perform well enough to help us win some games in the short run, and then bring back some good young pieces at the deadline. That hasn't happened either.

And--somebody's got to say it--I think a lot of us thought Matt Wieters would come into the majors and be an impact player right away, like Evan Longoria or Ryan Braun. The fact that it didn't happen shouldn't diminish our long term projection for him, but maybe on some level we're lowering our expectations for him as well.

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It is amazing how many normally sane people are jumping off the ship because of a the win-loss reocrd of this team. MacPhail has said 2011 all along. Rebuilding is painul if done correctly and we are experiencing the pain right now.

However, I see Bergesen, Reimold, Wieters getting their feet wet with some success and I see Jones becoming an All-Star. I see Hernandez and Berken show they should have some role on a big league staff and I see Matusz, Arrieta and Tillman all having great years in the minors.

I see the next wave of arms doing well down on the farm and I see Brandon Synder showing he should be a force to be reckoned with shortly.

I see an over seas scouting bureau tapping into the Japanese market and I hear the Orioles are contenders for a top Dominican talent.

I see upgrades to Mora and possibly Huff next season and I see a rotation that will include Matusz, Tillman, Arrieta, Bergesen and possibly Britton or Patton or Hernandez or possibly Hobgood one day.

Yes my friends, we are on the right path even if that pass has to take us deeper into the abyss in the near future.

WADR, you spent some time lauding people that were selected on Flanagan's watch, not MacPhail's

Bergesen - drafted 2004

Reimold - drafted 2005

Wieters - drafted 2007

Hernandez - drafted 2005

Berken - drafted 2006

Snyder - drafted 2005

Arrieta - drafted 2007

MacPhail drafted Matusz and Hobgood and made a great trade that got us Jones.

Is it the idea that MacPhail gets the credit for taking the pieces that Flanagan provided and cleverly shaping it into a possible contender in what will be his fourth full season on the job in 2011?

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This year was about "building a core". Those core players thus far are Markakis, Roberts, Jones, Wieters, Reimold, Bergesen and Hernandez.

So far, none of them look like they are going to be superstars. And I believe that a few of them need to be if we're going to have a chance to contend.

2009 has been disappointing because of that. I dont have as much faith in "the core" as I did at the beginning of the season -- and it only puts more pressure on the Big 3 to be the saviors of this organization. I still believe that the core can be a part of a contending team, just not the key players that I thought they'd be.

Let's hope they improve over the course of the second half and get back to that "superstar" status.

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WADR, you spent some time lauding people that were selected on Flanagan's watch, not MacPhail's

Bergesen - drafted 2004

Reimold - drafted 2005

Wieters - drafted 2007

Hernandez - drafted 2005

Berken - drafted 2006

Snyder - drafted 2005

Arrieta - drafted 2007

MacPhail drafted Matusz and Hobgood and made a great trade that got us Jones.

Is it the idea that MacPhail gets the credit for taking the pieces that Flanagan provided and cleverly shaping it into a possible contender in what will be his fourth full season on the job in 2011?

Shouldn't Joe Jordan get most of the credit here? Not really sure Flanagan made these calls either.

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Next year is the time to see improvement in the standings. When AM took over, word is he finally convinced PA that the team couldn't compete until 2010 at the earliest. I've been saying for the last 2 years, if we don't see some real, tangible, legitimate improvements next year, I'll start to question MacPhail. But I don't give a rats behind what our record is right now or even what it will be for the rest of the year.

Bottom line is that MacPhail's rebuild isn't taking any longer than a standard rebuild. But because we had almost a decade of ineptitude before him, it seems like much longer.

I wouldn't know how to test the notion that this rebuild is in line with a "standard rebuild", but I completely agree with your first paragraph. After two and a half years, it is hardly reactionary to expect all the changes that have taken place to begin show a benefit in the W/L columns. IMO next year begins the time that AM's efforts need to be judged with an increasingly stringent set of standards. My personal baseline for next year is 82 wins minimum, and a situation where at any given time the team is only referred to as a "good team" or a "bad team" but never as a "rebuilding team".

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WADR, you spent some time lauding people that were selected on Flanagan's watch, not MacPhail's

Bergesen - drafted 2004

Reimold - drafted 2005

Wieters - drafted 2007

Hernandez - drafted 2005

Berken - drafted 2006

Snyder - drafted 2005

Arrieta - drafted 2007

MacPhail drafted Matusz and Hobgood and made a great trade that got us Jones.

Is it the idea that MacPhail gets the credit for taking the pieces that Flanagan provided and cleverly shaping it into a possible contender in what will be his fourth full season on the job in 2011?

I would say that it's a lot of things, from small things like changing the away jerseys to big things like extending Markakis, trading for Tillman, Jones, Patton, Scott, etc...

What it probably boils down to is that MacPhail for whatever reason, has been given more autonomy to do what he feels is best for the long term viability for the organization in numerous respects.

Things have changed and continue to change throughout the organization. One of the last things to change when you overhaul things is gonna be the ML on field product, unless you go spending hundreds of millions of dollars which is made even more difficult by the worst economy we've experienced in 70 years.

Again, MacPhail has been transparent and straightforward about what he's trying to do and how he's trying to do it.

There is a plan in place and it's very well articulated and demonstrated.

That, my friends, is progress.

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I think most of us would agree that we're better off than we were 3 years ago. But I think some of us are looking at what we have on the field and what we have coming through the system and questioning whether the organization is really going to be in a position to contend in 2011-2012.

The Big Three have been spectacular this season in the minors, and the improvement of Bergesen, Hernandez and Reimold has been an unexpected boost to the team's future prospects. But I think most of us were assuming that Markakis would be a perennial all-star and Gold Glove right fielder, and right now that doesn't look like a safe assumption.

I think we were assuming that Adam Jones was a long-term answer in CF, and despite his progress with the bat that doesn't look like a safe assumption either because of questions about his glove.

We were assuming that Chris Ray would come back strong and be a major part of the bullpen. That's probably not ever going to happen now, and the bullpen is suddenly looking like a long-term problem for the organization.

I think we were hoping that guys like Huff and Guthrie would perform well enough to help us win some games in the short run, and then bring back some good young pieces at the deadline. That hasn't happened either.

And--somebody's got to say it--I think a lot of us thought Matt Wieters would come into the majors and be an impact player right away, like Evan Longoria or Ryan Braun. The fact that it didn't happen shouldn't diminish our long term projection for him, but maybe on some level we're lowering our expectations for him as well.

I think your post should ease your own concerns.

Markakis is somewhat disappointing this year, but he's still a solid player. Many have been comparing him to George Brett lately, and that is a comparison anyone would be happy with.

Jones has broke out this year. He's an All-Star. Who expected that at the start of the season. Yes, he's struggling a little now, but he also looks to be more relaxed lately at the plate and could bust out again in the next couple of weeks.

The defensive concerns of the two are legit. However, it doesn't appear that either have lost any physical abilities. It just seems that they are reading balls poorly, and (for Jones) possibly playing too shallowly.

I don't think anyone expected Ray to come back and pitch to his old form. Even if he is a lost cause, that is certainly no reason to expect that our progress has been hindered in the least bit.

As far as Guthrie and Huff go, I don't know what kind of prospects we could have expected back for them, especially Huff. Nobody wanted him last year when he was setting the world on fire. Guthrie might be a different story, but just as many people wanted to hold on to him as they thought he would be a part of our next winning club. Also, whatever value has been lost with these guys has been somewhat offset by Sherrill's tremendous play and improved value.

Wieters looks like he is on the verge of busting out. He is really hitting well now. Plus, it's alot tougher on him to be an immediate impact bat b/c he has a huge added defensive responsibility that guys like Braun and Longoria didn't have.

When you factor whatever losses have occurred to our guys' value this season, you should also not forget to include (which you did) the great improvements from Reimold, Bergesen and Hernandez. We probably didn't expect alot from those guys, but look how they are contributing and will contribute.

Overall, there is alot to be excited about and it's easy to overlook the predicament we are currently in, unless you're trying to find something to complain about.

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This year was about "building a core". Those core players thus far are Markakis, Roberts, Jones, Wieters, Reimold, Bergesen and Hernandez.

So far, none of them look like they are going to be superstars. And I believe that a few of them need to be if we're going to have a chance to contend.

2009 has been disappointing because of that. I dont have as much faith in "the core" as I did at the beginning of the season -- and it only puts more pressure on the Big 3 to be the saviors of this organization. I still believe that the core can be a part of a contending team, just not the key players that I thought they'd be.

Let's hope they improve over the course of the second half and get back to that "superstar" status.

First of all, this year is halfway over.

Second of all, ALL WE HAVE HEARD about Markakis, Adam Jones and Wieters is that they are going to be "superstars."

I'm as disappointed as you are at the results so far, but this is statement is Trea-esque, dude.

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I would be thrilled beyond belief if Nick Markakis became the next George Brett. George Brett wasn't a solid player--he was a first ballot Hall of Famer, the best all-around hitter of his generation--a perennial .320 hitter with 25 HR, 50 2B, and a high OBP.

I'd be almost as thrilled if Markakis became the next Al Kaline--never one of the elite players of the game but a perennial all-star who played well until age 40 and was also an easy Hall of Famer.

Right now Markakis looks like he's a long way from being compared to those gentlemen.

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