Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Base Hits: Toxic Fields, Undeserved Awards and Rick Dempsey's Christmas Album

Oriole players may want to request hazardous duty pay when they report to Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota, their new Spring Training complex:

At one time the neighborhood ballpark was a landfill so city commissioners requested a thorough environmental check before teaming up with the Orioles.

Recently, the group obtained a 117-page report, commissioned by the city, which shows a plume of vinyl chloride contamination, along with a series of heavy metals and organic compounds that far exceed safe EPA levels.


In a related story, the Orioles have unveiled new black and orange DEVO suits.

Since there are plans to renovate or demolish Ed Smith Stadium after 2010, local residents are concerned about what toxins may be kicked up into the air during construction, as well as what pollutants exist, literally, in their backyards.

You would have to think that there are contingencies to clean up the site if need be. If not, do the Orioles balk and go elsewhere?

The full report has not been released to the public. I'm sure there is more to come.


The "This Year in Baseball Awards" at MLB.com feature few Oriole nominees. In fact, they only feature two, both in the defense category. The first is Adam Jones who had a bit of a down year in center but did have 9 outfield assists in 118 games. OK.

The second was Melvin Mora. Melvin Mora! Mora?!?!?

There are 10 nominees from all of baseball. Anyone who watched the O's this season knows that Mora was struggling in the field this year and that he was not one of the top ten defenders in baseball. In terms of UZR, he ranked 11th among third basemen alone. I don't understand the selection at all.

In related news, Drew Silva at FanGraphs.com thinks Mora could be a nice utility player next season.


This article on delmarvanow.com details the up and down career of current Phillie outfielder and former Oriole first round pick, Jayson Werth. I would say that former Oriole manager (and current Phillies third base coach) Sam Perlozzo took a cheap shot at the Orioles organization but he does qualify his remark:

"They saw him as a (career) backup," said Sam Perlozzo, an Orioles coach in those days and now the Phillies' third base coach. "To be fair, he wasn't the player he is now. He's gotten bigger, stronger."


This was kind of a forgone conclusion but Spencer Fordin reports that the Orioles have decided that Koji Uehara will definitely be a reliever next season.


On MLB.com, vote for The All-Time 9 for the Baltimore Orioles. Even though I consider myself something of a baseball historian, I do not like the inclusion of St. Louis Browns in the ballot. Down with Baby Doll Jacobsen and Moose Solters! And where's Rick Dempsey? Not even a mention?


Speaking of Rick Dempsey, Rick will be playing live with the Deanna Bogart Band on Sunday, November 15th, 2009 at Serafino's in Ellicot City. I was not even aware that Rick was a musician.

I also did not know that Rick Dempsey has released a holiday CD called Home Run Holiday. I'm getting that. I'm not kidding.

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