A look at what some other media outlets are saying about the Orioles:
* Jon Paul Morosi of Foxsports.com writes that Adam Jones’ attitude makes him the right player to become the face of the Orioles for years to come:
Jones is a respected leader, with resounding endorsements from his peers and manager Buck Showalter. The Orioles ought to find that reassuring, given the risk that accompanies any deal of this magnitude. They didn’t merely buy Jones’ statistics, impressive though they may be. They wedded themselves to his character. That is why it was wise.
Case in point: Jones wasn’t in a particularly good mood when our conversation began Monday afternoon, even though he had received his mega-million payday roughly 24 hours prior.
“We lost the series (to Kansas City),” he explained. “That’s on my mind. Obviously, I know there’s been focus on the contract. I’m glad it’s over. I’ve got more important things to focus my energy on ... and that’s this ballclub. We’ve got to get back on track.”
* Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain-Dealer writes that the Orioles will need to continue to produce on offense if the team wants to hang with the Rays, Yankees and Red Sox come August:
They'll need that kind of muscle in the AL East to hold off the big-money Yankees and Red Sox, who have sputtered their way through the first two months.
The Orioles, like the Indians, do some of their best work late in the game. Nine times, according to STATS, the Birds have trailed after six innings only to rally to win. The bullpen has accounted for 11 of their 29 victories.
* Richard Griffin of the Toronto Star writes that although the season is heating up and frustration is boiling over for teams like the struggling Blue Jays, “Orioles veteran manager Buck Showalter sees it as part of the game” for both winning and losing teams alike:
Showalter has managed also-rans and he’s managed contenders – often in consecutive seasons – and he sees no difference in the passion both versions bring to the table. In fact, when the last-place O’s eliminated the Red Sox on the final day of last season, one would think they had won the AL title.
“I think everybody feels that way, if you have pride in what you’re doing and what you’ve been asked to do,” the O’s skipper said. “These are the best players in the world. These are the best umpires in the world. I mean, it’s the reason why players are here. They’re competitive and their passionate about what they do. They know when something’s not right. The good ones handle it accordingly.”
* The Toronto Sun’s Mike Ganter says the Orioles “roof has not caved in,” but they aren’t budding like they were earlier in the season. The club needs to stay consistent in the bullpen and get some players back from injury to continue to be successful:
A lot of it has to do with their vaunted, yet relatively unknown bullpen. Led by Jim Johnson — who has saved 24 consecutive games dating back to last August and is 16-for-16 this year — the O’s have held a huge advantage over its opponents from the seventh inning on.
Pedro Strop, Darren O’Day, Luis Ayala and Troy Patton have given Buck Showalter the kind of collective relief few managers in the Majors ever get to enjoy.
Second baseman Brian Roberts appears to have put his concussion problems behind him and is getting his work in right now with the O’s double-A team in Bowie. With Roberts in Bowie and headed for a return to Baltimore to join the O’s at some point in June is starter Zach Britton.
* Reuters' Team Report says Orioles manager Buck Showalter could be in for some major postseason awards if the Orioles keep playing at a high level:
The Orioles have been the surprise team in major league baseball in 2012, holding down first place in the tough American League East for most of the season. If Baltimore keeps this up, Buck Showalter, who earned his 1,000thcareer victory this month, will chalk up his third manager-of-the-year award.