Baltimore Orioles, Adam Jones keep it professional after no-no
There were lots of reactions both from players such as Adam Jones, as well as fans to the Baltimore Orioles getting no-hit on Wednesday. I maintain what I said at the end of my game recap that day: this can either galvanize the O’s, or it can totally ruin them. That decision is up to them however the fact is that I think most people know the quality of the characters in that clubhouse.
But lots of people were almost more dismayed at the reaction of the players in the clubhouse than anything else. Adam Jones said something to the effect that Hisashi Iwakuma threw a lot of strikes. The fact is that’s not really true; Iwakuma actually lived outside of the strike zone for most of the day. He induced swings and misses in a lot of Orioles, however he was on the fringes of the plate.
So is Jones lying or misleading? Let’s not get carried away now! What Jones was doing was paying homage to an opponent who just pitched the game of his life. And that’s consistent with Buck Showalter, and with Buck Showalter-coached teams. Professionalism is how the Orioles approach the game. That means that the institution of “the game” itself must always come first.
My point here is that the very professionalism of which I speak above should never be misinterpreted as apathy. Do people
Courtesy of Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
really want to see fire out of the Orioles’ clubhouse? In saying that, my inference is to the effect that guys are screaming at each other and sounding off in the media as to how this has to change and change NOW?
The Orioles aren’t unlike any other company. Someone like Buck Showalter isn’t going to publicly throw his players under the bus. I suspect that there might have been some uncomfortable moments on the flight home, however in public the team will always maintain it’s cool and it’s level of professionalism. I can tell you that I’ve been proverbially “no-hit” in my life many times. Would I want to be constantly reminded of that…would you?
But again, that apparent lack of fire shouldn’t be thought of as apathy or a lack of caring. These players do care, and very deeply at that. There are some teams out there who seemingly have a lot of fire in their bellies outwardly. But speaking for myself I also see a group that’s somewhat out of control when I see that.
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Stoicism is a part of baseball, which as we know is a timeless game. The Orioles are a testament to that. Tipping your cap to a worthy opponent doesn’t show that you don’t care that you were bested; it shows that you have respect for the game and for your opponents. Don’t ever forget that, be it in baseball or in any way of life. This game will humble you at times, just as will this world; if you’re willing to handle that with class and grace as opposed to the alternative, eventually it’ll reward you as well.
The Birds will open up a very important homestand tonight when Oakland comes to town for a return engagement. Ubaldo Jimenez gets the start for the O’s, and Oakland has not yet decided on a starter. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.