Roch around the clock

ROCH AROUND THE CLOCK

The Kickoff

March 15, 2006|By ROCH KUBATKO

Remember when Ed Rogers was touted as a can't-miss prospect in the Orioles' organization? Well, he missed, but he's having a great camp and seems to have reinvented himself. Or maybe he's just being Ed Rogers, after team officials and the media tried to make him something more.

"He has improved so much," hitting coach Terry Crowley said. "All the work I've done with him, and the minor league staff and all the coaches he's been around ... it seems like it's all finally sunk in and he's putting it all into play."

Rogers has looked very smooth at second base, and he's hitting the ball with authority. Sounds like he's the front-runner now to take Brian Roberts' spot on the roster if the second baseman goes on the disabled list.

Crowley also had praise for Corey Patterson, noting how the center fielder actually listens to what he's told and takes it with him to home plate. Crowley doesn't like to divulge too much when it comes to instructing specific players, for fear of embarrassing them, but he noted how Patterson needs to become "consistent enough as a hitter to let us enjoy the benefits of a real fast player."

"If he hits fly balls that don't land over the fence, we're not benefiting from his legs," Crowley said. "It looks like he can help us."

roch.kubatko@baltsun.com

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