Orioles' ups and downs

July 25, 1999|By Joe Strauss

Scott Erickson -- UP -- Undefeated since June 5 and taken off the market. The Orioles realize that to contend next season (or beyond), they need his innings profile.

Trade intrigue -- UP -- Rent-a-pitcher Juan Guzman, Delino DeShields, Harold Baines, Jeff Conine or possibly Mike Bordick could relocate by Saturday. The New York media has labeled any interest by GM Steve Phillips in Albert Belle as Mets Madness.

Jerry Hairston -- UP -- Gone but not forgotten, Hairston used 23 starts to convince the organization that he is major-league ready. Second-guessers might maintain the same appraisal could have been made last winter, but Hairston showed markedly better defensive skills and a sharper bat than he exhibited in spring training or the Arizona Fall League.

Bruce Kison -- UP -- The formerly embattled pitching coach has contributed to a slow-starting rotation's transformation. The team ERA is closing on Cleveland and Toronto.

Charles Johnson -- DOWN -- Consecutive days off Thursday and Friday addressed a crying need. Seventy-five starts already and a power slide.

Mike Bordick -- DOWN -- Suffering through a homerless July. Like Johnson, he may be feeling the crush of incessant play (95 starts). With DeShields back, he may receive some down time.

Pub Date: 7/25/99

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