Hawkins blasts O's as `negative'

Rockies contributor calls experience `bad'

Notes

October 29, 2007|By Dan Connolly | Dan Connolly,Sun reporter

DENVER -- In one calendar year, reliever LaTroy Hawkins has gone from an Orioles club stuck in a losing spiral to being a contributor on a Colorado Rockies' World Series team.

The move, he said, probably saved his career.

"Losing does something to you, it makes you start thinking that it is time to hang it up," said Hawkins, 34. "But coming over here with young guys who are very energetic and want to learn and are very passionate about what they do, makes you look like, `Yeah, I like that. I want to be a part of that.'"

Hawkins, who came to Baltimore in December 2005 in a trade with the San Francisco Giants for Steve Kline, said his Orioles experience was one of the most draining of his career. The negativity in the clubhouse, he said, was epidemic.

"Yeah, it was bad," Hawkins said. "I don't want to knock the Orioles, but it was just bad. Bad."

In Baltimore, he went 3-2 with a 4.48 ERA - his worst mark since 2001 - and then signed a one-year, $3.25 million deal (with a 2008 mutual option) with the Rockies. This season, he was 2-5 with a 3.42 ERA, shaving more than a run off his ERA despite moving to Coors Field. In five postseason appearances heading into last night, he had allowed just two hits and one run (1.80 ERA).

"When I walked away from Baltimore, I left that whole negative mentality behind," he said. "Losing definitely puts an emotional bind on you. They say winning cures everything. That is probably one of the most true statements ever made."

As for what he thinks the Orioles should do to change their losing ways, Hawkins said: "I'm not a GM, and they have [Andy] MacPhail over there now. He is a good guy. And I think [manager Dave] Trembley has done a great job trimming house."

1 game, 2 records

Game 3 Saturday night set both an impressive record and a dubious one. The game, the first in World Series history held in Denver, brought in $9,139,660 in gate receipts. The Series is on pace for the highest receipts in history. But not all the news was good news. The 10-5 Red Sox victory, which lasted four hours, 19 minutes and ended minutes before 1 a.m. Eastern Time, was the longest nine-inning World Series game ever played. It was five minutes longer than Game 4 of the 1993 World Series, a 15-14 Toronto win over Philadelphia.

Award no show

Major League Baseball presented its annual Hank Aaron Award to the most outstanding offensive performers in each league yesterday at a news conference. Aaron was present and so was Milwaukee's young slugger and National League winner Prince Fielder. But the American League recipient, Yankees' third baseman Alex Rodriguez, didn't show because of "previous commitments," said baseball commissioner Bud Selig. No word whether those previous commitments had anything to do with Rodriguez's decision to opt out of his contract.

Around the horn

Boston's on-base percentage of .442 heading into last night was the highest World Series mark through three games. ... Country music star Trisha Yearwood sang the national anthem, and country group Lonestar sang "God Bless America." ... The Red Sox are the first team to have three different starters win the first three games of the World Series since the 1963 Los Angeles Dodgers (Sandy Koufax, Johnny Podres and Don Drysdale).

dan.connolly@baltsun.com

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