Dull bench irks fanI just got done reading Mike Littwin's...

LETTERS

August 30, 1992

Dull bench irks fan

I just got done reading Mike Littwin's column in The Sun about lack of excitement among the Orioles. To say it nicely, I'm very angry. I'm a 19-year-old die-hard fan of the Orioles, Cubs and of baseball itself, and this column brought tears to my eyes. I remember in 1982 (I was 9), Earl Weaver's last year, when the Orioles lost the pennant in the last game to the Brewers, I cried. I also remember when the Colts left in the night and the "Why Not?" season in 1989 when the Orioles lost to the Blue Jays. Nothing has hurt me as much as when I read Rick Sutcliffe's statement of lack of excitement on the bench.

There is a sold-out crowd every night at Camden Yards, hoping to break in the new park with an American League East championship. If the players are watching the game on TV, not in the dugout, maybe the fans should do the same and stay home. We pay hard-earned money to watch the players play and hope for a win. Without baseball fans, where would the players be?

Now is the time to show Baltimore fans and baseball fans around the world that this team is for real. So, win us the pennant.

Rick Sutcliffe, thank you for coming to Baltimore and showing the fans in Baltimore the truth, and let's make up for 1984.

Barry Wylie

Bel Air Rick Sutcliffe jumped all over the Orioles the other day for not getting excited and rooting for their team. Now I am going to jump all over the so-called Orioles fans. I am an avid Orioles fan who attends about 40 games a year. When I attend, I bring with me my 50 or so orange and black signs, some of which depict such sayings as "Get loud," "Noise," "Let's go O's," etc. I display these signs during the game, hoping to get the crowd involved and excited and in turn help the Orioles win!

Well, after a recent game against Oakland (the first-place team in the West and possible AL playoff foe), I, like Rick Sutcliffe, am mad! Mad at the lack of enthusiasm shown by the fans. You would never know that the Orioles are in the midst of a pennant race. The fans sit there solemnly, waiting for something to happen, instead of making something happen.

They sit there discussing business deals with the score tied 1-1 in the bottom of the eighth inning. They sit there, with their backs to the game, talking about how beautiful the stadium is and how, at the next cocktail party they attend, they will surely explain that they attended a game at Camden Yards and had a "marvelous time" -- they couldn't tell you who won -- but they had a marvelous time. These people aren't fans. They're just taking up space at the ballpark.

Real fans get involved in the game, root for their team -- especially if they're losing -- and try to distract the opposition by getting loud, making noise and rooting for the Orioles.

It's about time the fans in Baltimore realize that the Orioles are in the middle of a pennant race and that they -- the fans -- can help provide the Orioles with the home-field advantage.

Remember: The Orioles' 10th man is the fan. Let's help them bring home the pennant!

Chuck Friedel

Columbia

Umpiring has deteriorated

After seeing another episode of deplorable umpiring Aug. 19, I thoroughly disgusted with what used to be my favorite sport. I heartily agree with Todd Frohwirth's temper display on the horrendous umpiring.

Thank God, when this 73-year-old minor-league and sandlot pitcher played baseball, we at least had pitches called from the shoulders/letters to the knees. Today, umpires may call strikes from the belt to the knees -- if a pitcher is lucky, to say nothing about calling the corners.

If I were a pitcher today, I wouldn't last one full game and would get out of what used to be an excellent sport. Umpiring needs a complete revision so baseball can return to what Abner Doubleday intended it to be.

Charlie Tiemeyer

Chestertown

Wake up, Orioles

I am writing this letter because of the dilemma the Orioles are putting their fans in. Fans from all around have been supporting the Orioles for years, especially this year with the opening of Camden Yards.

As of late, the Orioles have been losing games that they should have won, starting with the series with Cleveland, Kansas City and Seattle. All three teams have horrible records. It's an embarrassment that a solid second-place team can't gain ground on the first-place team by disposing of those teams.

It's time for a gut check, fellas. Get it together. If you don't want to win the American League East for yourselves, win it for Baltimore and all of your fans from around the country who have supported you this year. It's been a long time since we have had something to cheer about.

The way things stand now, the only way Baltimore will defeat Toronto is if the teams exchange uniforms!

Kevin Grace

Baltimore

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