Russ Smith wrote a poorly supported article on why the Orioles are not looking at the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel. I was going to go on a rant but Kevin Lomax did a very good job over at Eutaw Street Hooligans. Besides, he's willing to curse in print.
Also, Shysterball linked to the story and the comments do a fair job of poking holes in Smith's assertions too.
Only two new things to add...
1) Why do some fans/analysts (like Smith) think they can observe ballplayers' mannerisms in the field and draw conclusions about their mood/dedication/love of the game? They're professional ballplayers, not wildlife.
2) As much as I like Brad Bergesen, anybody who sees Brian Matusz's stuff and polish and concludes that he does not have a better chance at being very good than Bergesen just isn't a bright guy.
Roar from 34 continues to be the source for all things Eutaw Street as he notes that Luke Scott, in less than two seasons, is closing in on Rafael Palmiero as the Oriole leader in launching homers that reach the boulevard that runs in front of The Warehouse.
Since August 1st:
* Melvin Mora is hitting .291/.334/.437 with 4 homers.
* Matt Wieters is hitting .243/.292/.333 with two homers, 7 walks and 30 strikeouts. I've got to admit that, hype aside, I expected Wieters to be hitting better by this stage of the season. Not particularly worried, just resetting my expectations for his learning curve.
* Oscar Salazar is hitting .395/.442/.632 with 2 homers. Granted, this is only over 38 at bats but the Padres are starting to see some usefulness in the guy beyond pinch hitter and he has gotten a few starts over the last couple weeks.
* Cla Meredith is posting a 5.94 ERA in 16.1 IP with 10 walks and 11 strikeouts. So far, he is what we thought he was. Didn't we already get this kind of production from Matt Albers? Were we that sure Salazar couldn't platoon at 1st/3rd/DH next season? Really sure?
* Jeremy Guthrie is 3-4 with a 3.83 ERA. I fully expected Guthrie to rebound a bit next season but he's managed to turn it around in August. Make no mistake, Guthrie will be a big part of this team's fortunes over the next two seasons.
* Felix Pie is hitting .321/.391/.605 with 6 home runs. He's not this good but he's pretty damned good and finally starting to show it.
* Luke Scott is hitting .206/.314/.363 with 3 home runs. This season notwithstanding, Scott can't hit lefties and his success against southpaws in '09 is a fluke. I think he makes an intriguing platoon partner with Ty Wigginton (Wiggy has a career .846 OPS against lefties) which is a moot point since Dave Trembley seems very averse to L/R platoons.*****
Finally, a good piece on Brian Roberts by Jeff Zrebiec in The Baltimore Sun. Zrebiec mentions Roberts' streakiness but I've never considered Roberts a streaky hitter. Which gets me thinking...hmmmmm.....