October 07, 2006

Angelos' words speak quite loudly

I am absolutely and delightfully stunned at Rick Maese's baseball-related mini-literary masterpiece appearing in The Sun on Monday ["Today, we mourn nine straight losing seasons"].

Why stunned? This is the first time (emphasis on first) that a Sun columnist/writer has taken the time and effort to research all of the "believe me, I'm all for winning" quotes spouted by Mr. Angelos over the past nine miserable, losing years.

Mr. Maese uses these quotes to make everyone painfully aware that with Angelos one should ignore all Angelos' talk, but pay attention to what he does, or in this case, what he hasn't done.

The Angelos quotes (and a few other quotes from Orioles flunkies) are arranged in chronological order, with Mr. Maese weaving in biting, sardonic and humorous commentary showing - using Angelos' own words - just how Angelos is a master at talking the walk, but never walking the talk.

Just beautiful. A lawyer (Angelos) having his own words come back to haunt him.

Bravo, Mr. Maese!

Joseph Michael Cierniak

Glen Burnie

An examination of the logic of losing

In trying to determine the reason for the Orioles' nine straight losing seasons, the logical place to start is with the players. But, with the multitude of players who have come and gone over nine years, it seems illogical that the team could have consistently bad players for such a long period of time.

So, the next place to look would be the manager - bad managing must be the reason. But, with four different managers over nine years, it seems illogical that each of them could be that bad. The next place to look would be the general managers (or whatever title the Orioles use for that position).

But, there have been five men in that role over nine years - it seems illogical that all of them were that bad. Obviously, the reason must be the low ticket prices, which keep the Orioles from competing. But, as of 2005, the Orioles' average ticket price was higher than, among others, those of the Padres, Dodgers, Tigers, Indians, Athletics, Marlins, Diamondbacks, Braves, Rangers and Angels.

During the past nine years, those teams have made the playoffs 36 times. Logically, then, ticket prices don't seem to be the reason.

Clearly, there's only one logical reason for nine straight years of losing - the reason stated by the majority owner in a recent interview - the other teams have better luck.

Dan Katz

Owings Mills

Please, just say no to news about T.O

I cannot fathom that anyone in Maryland gives a hoot about Terrell Owens. He does not deserve the print space that The Sun affords him.

He is simply an egotistical egotist echoing his egotistical way. Please, just say no; he is old and bad news.

Roy Ruhe


Terps' grad rates not the whole story

It is regrettable that Heather A. Dinich's recent article ["To a degree, Terps still lag," Sept. 28] did not focus on the academic accomplishments of all 27 University of Maryland intercollegiate athletic teams.

Had it done so, readers would have learned that the Terps' Federal Graduation Rate increased six percentage points to 76 percent in the past year - 1 percentage point short of the national average.

Likewise, Ms. Dinich passed on the opportunity to highlight athletic director Debbie Yow's commitment to academic support. Currently, in excess of $1.2 million annually is spent on academic support for Terps athletes.

Although Ms. Dinich did acknowledge that penalties such as loss of scholarships are tied to the Academic Progress Rate (APR) rather than the Graduation Success Rate (GSR), she failed to mention that the Terps' football team and men's basketball team are ranked in the 60th to 70th percentile nationally with respect to the APR. In fact, both teams scored well above the national average. Football's APR is 947 compared with a national average of 920 and men's basketball's APR is 949 compared with a national average of 917.

Finally, Ms. Dinich failed to mention that the Maryland football team's 64 percent GSR exceeds that of last year's national champion, Texas (40 percent); this year's No. 1-ranked team, Ohio State (55 percent); the 2004 national champion, Southern California (55 percent); and this year's University of California team (44 percent).

Bob Baker

Laurel, Del.

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