Timing of Machado announcement a calculated move

August 09, 2012|By Eduardo A. Encina | The Baltimore Sun

Give credit to the Orioles for getting the most bang for their buck out of Wednesday night's announcement that the club is purchasing the contract of top position player prospect Manny Machado.

The Orioles made the announcement late Wednesday night -- a press release was sent at 11:24 p.m. -- allowing the news to get into final editions of newspapers as well as quickly filter through the internet. Those who didn't hear the news Wednesday night woke up to it Thursday morning.

One industry source said the Orioles considered holding the announcement until Thursday afternoon, but decided otherwise, hoping an early release would create buzz throughout the day and spike walk-up ticket sales for Thursday's series opener against the Royals in anticipation of Machado's first big league start.

Not that is was intended, but it's also interesting that Machado's first start will likely come on the same night as the Ravens' first preseason game in Atlanta. which will be televised locally.

The Royals are one of the worst road draws in the baseball, ranking 28th out of 30 big league clubs in average road attendance (28,203).

It will be interesting to see the response. The surging Orioles have won five straight, are nine games over .500 for the first time since late June and now sit in a three-way tie for the top AL Wild-Card spot.

Add in the debut of Machado, one of the most anticipated Orioles prospects in recent memory (along with fellow top prospect Dylan Bundy), and it should make for an interesting night at Camden Yards.  

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