Orioles' ups and downs

May 02, 1999

Ricky Bones -- UP -- Almost anonymous in long relief, Bones entered the weekend carrying the Orioles' only sub-4.00 ERA. Yeah, he surrendered last Sunday's grand slam to Jason Giambi, but nobody's perfect, especially on this staff. Is there a start in his future?

Clubhouse meetings -- DOWN -- Manager Ray Miller already has held two, not a good sign in April. Miller emerged Tuesday insisting he hadn't apologized for Sunday's food-throwing, fist-flying tirade. Asked by one player to "let the players play," Miller made only one player substitution the next three games.

1988 Orioles -- UP -- Sure, those guys were 0-21. But the four-man rotation wasn't this bad, the games weren't this long and the team became national celebrities. Even the president phoned his support. At 5-16 entering the weekend, this year's bunch has become a symbol of fiscal irresponsibility.

"Sluggers" -- UP -- Albert Belle's new cereal crunch is a hit (without runners in scoring position, of course) even if his promotional tour suffered a rocky start. Why would the A-Bomb call anyone "a clown" just for carrying a microphone and a bowl of flakes while wearing a luau shirt on a baseball field?

Bruce Kison -- DOWN -- Orioles pitchers entered the weekend with an ERA of preposterous proportion. Juan Guzman and Scott Erickson are groping for mechanics. In Miller's era of "accountability," the pitching coach needs to make an impact.

Joe Cubas -- EVEN -- The renowned/notorious South Florida flesh peddler knows when you are sleeping. He knows when you're awake. He knows if you play bad or good. So how many Cuban peloteros will he take?

Pub Date: 5/02/99

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