Orioles' ups and downs

April 18, 1999|By Joe Strauss

Eleven Angry Men -down - Starters Scott Erickson and Sidney Ponson said they were not ready for the season to open. Middle relief, now minus Doug Johns, resembles a waste area. Arthur Rhodes must allow a home run before getting permission to leave. A mess

Moose - up - Without Mike Mussina, this season looks like 1988.

Jesse Orosco - down - The ancient left-hander surrendered a pair of three-jacks to left-handed bats in the past week. (He allowed two to left-handers all last season.) Orosco -- 42 on Wednesday -- needs more time than most to discover his form. It's time this team doesn't have.

Ray Miller - down - Even given GM Frank Wren's public support, the manager has been flabbergasted by his team's disastrous start. "Players play," Miller says. Managers usually suffer the hit when they don't.

Harold Baines - up - Removed for a pinch hitter eight days ago, he homered Sunday and cranked career No. 350 on Wednesday. Typically, few even noticed. After mashing 11 RBIs in his first 27 at-bats, he needs nine more RBIs for 1,500.

The schedule - up - As of Tuesday, 12 of the next 15 games are at Camden Yards, and the next 18 are against losing clubs from '98.

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