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Boston Shames Baltimore

By Ben Butanis

Thanks to Jeremy Guthrie's 24, 25, and 26th home runs he's given up this season, the Orioles lost 6-5 Friday. Then things got bad.

For what it's worth, Josh Beckett is probably the best pitcher in the American League right now, which makes the 4-0 Saturday night loss somewhat bearable. But what happened Sunday is entirely unexcusable.

The Orioles sent struggling Jason Berken (1-9) to the mound. He left after 1 1/3 innings, allowing six runs on seven hits. Brian Bass then allowed four runs in two innings of work, Matt Albers couldn't get anybody out, giving up four runs on five hits and only getting an out. Mark Hendrickson let in another two runs, while Jason Johnson and submarine pitcher Cla Meredith each allowed one.

Apparently the Orioles have no one that can pitch.

I'll admit it. I went to Saturday and Sunday's games. But I won't make that mistake again this season.

What I can't understand is how Dave Trembley still has a job. Or half of these players for that matter. Trembley stated in spring training how the team was going to focus on playing fundamental, mistake-free baseball. But whenever I watch them play, the Orioles consistently make baserunning blunders, make sloppy plays in the field, and their pitchers are unable to throw the ball across the plate.

Unacceptable for a major league team. Heck, it's unacceptable for a high school team.

The Orioles are a joke. If the franchise wants to bring fans back in the stadium, they need to make an effort. Andy McPhail is doing a great job bringing in prospects - I wouldn't want to imagine where they'd be without him - but the team needs to get back to fundamental baseball.

If Trembley isn't effective, fire him. If Melvin Mora keeps whining, cut him. The Orioles need to show the fans they're serious about changing things around. Whether that means overpaying tremendously for high-priced free agents this offseason, trading away half the roster, or firing the entire coaching staff, it's time to do something drastic.

If the franchise was somewhat competitive, fielding young talent while playing fundamental baseball, I think Baltimore fans could get behind a team like that. But until then, expect 30-35,000+ Boston or New York fans to take over Camden Yards every time their team travels to Baltimore.

One thing's for certain: I won't be there.

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