Now that football season is effectively over, I have to look elsewhere for sporting satisfaction. Baseball season is almost upon us but I'm an Orioles fan (I so wish I wasn't) so I have nothing to look forward to except another season of mediocrity and straight doo-doo from the pitching staff. Think I'm being overdramatic? Ask Leo Mazzone about the Orioles organization.
“If I had to do it all over again, I would have never done it,” said Leo Mazzone, mostly a national television analyst on baseball these days, reflecting from his home in Roswell. He inherited a bunch of soft pitchers in Baltimore who couldn’t adjust to his hard but effective style. He was booted after two seasons.He didn't just throw the Orioles under the bus. He drove it over them several times. Orioles fans shouldn't waste time getting mad at him. Daniel Cabrera probably disagrees but the results speak for themselves. The pitching staff is inhabited by pitchers who show flashes of brilliance followed by sustained periods of inexplicable self-destruction. Andy MacPhail really hasn't done anything to address this but last year's Erik Bedard trade (which resulted in some nice pickups including All-Star George Sherrill and Adam Jones) and the imminent resigning of Nick Markakis will fool me into thinking things are changing until the inevitable summer collapse. Where are Lenn Sakata, John Lowenstein and Tito Landrum when you need them? Orioles Magic. Feel it happen.
To hear Mazzone tell it, his firing was a relief. “Once I got there and saw how they operated compared to the Braves, I knew I made a mistake the first week of spring training,” he said, before chuckling and adding, “I said to myself, ‘You know what? I done messed up.’
“The lack of organization. The lack of discipline. The lack of overall professionalism. I was shocked, and I couldn’t believe it.”
O-R-I-O-L-E-S! This song will never leave me.