September 22, 2006

Orioles Fans Walk Out In Protest:: At exactly 5:08 p.m. yesterday (in honor of #5 and #8), about 1,000 Baltimore Orioles fans, many wearing black t-shirts saying "For Pete's Sake/Free The Birds," walked out of the stadium en masse in the fourth inning of a makeup game against the Detroit Tigers to protest Peter Angelos' apparent disinterest in fielding a competitive team.

The O's are about to complete their ninth consecutive losing season, all under the management of Angelos.

posted by chicobangs to baseball at 09:11 AM - 29 comments

Will it change the way Angelos runs the team? Almost definitely not. Is it better than not buying the tickets and staying home in protest instead? Ask an Expos fan, or a Marlins fan. Personally, I like it. If I was an O's fan, I would feel like I had to say something.

posted by chicobangs at 09:16 AM on September 22, 2006

The problem is Angelos still got the income from the game. Other than that I like it.

posted by scottypup at 10:12 AM on September 22, 2006

Angelos also saw the fans walk out. Just staying home wouldn't have sent the message to him, even though he wouldnt have got the money from the ticket sales. Whether it gets inside him or not is a completely different thing, but i give the fans props for doing it. (the a-rod link on that page is a good story too)

posted by nyfan at 10:26 AM on September 22, 2006

It is sad to watch the once proud Orioles. I was a fan in the 70's and 80's and loved to see the passion Cal Ripkin had for the game. It is amazing to see expansion clubs win World Series while the great clubs of the past flounder year to year. If management does not have passion to win, get out of the game. It hurts the game and the city.

posted by candugraphics at 10:26 AM on September 22, 2006

Just because expansion clubs are winning World Serieses doesn't mean they're necessarily in any better shape. The Diamondbacks are muddling along themselves, and the Marlins... well, no one's going to those games at all anymore, and if there are any Marlins fans left, they're going to have to follow them when they leave Miami for Portland or San Juan or wherever they wind up moving. Yes, Angelos gets their money, but he also gets their message, which isn't a bad tradeoff, given how few alternatives there are.

posted by chicobangs at 10:34 AM on September 22, 2006

Well fromt he little I know about Angelos, neither staying home or walking out will have much impact on him. He's just not committed to winning.

posted by scottypup at 10:36 AM on September 22, 2006

He might get their money, but he also got embarassed nationally.

posted by jerseygirl at 10:39 AM on September 22, 2006

I'm glad that the fans are demonstrating their disapproval this way, Angelos is a putz. I grew up in Baltimore during the Palmer/Murray era whem they won, alot. I'm still a fan but each season is just depressing. But the AL East is far and away the most expensive division in the league and just competing there will cost alot more than $75 mil.

posted by fenriq at 10:43 AM on September 22, 2006

Problem is he doesn't get the message. His responses:

"Whoever joins that protest has no comprehension of what it costs to run a baseball team."
And in fact, Angelos attacks the messenger, Nestor Aparicio (nephew of former Oriole shortstop Luis Aparicio.)
"He is a very unimportant person who has delusions of grandeur. To begin with, to leave in the middle of the game is an abuse of the players who have worked hard and played their hearts out."
Peter Angelos is an ass.

posted by scully at 10:53 AM on September 22, 2006

It may not change anything but, like JG said, whether he admits it or not, it has to be embarrassing. I'm impressed that they could get enough people to participate. I don't think many cities could pull that off.

posted by SummersEve at 11:30 AM on September 22, 2006

Ironically, said fans walked out on a victory.

posted by Bill Lumbergh at 11:36 AM on September 22, 2006

I too grew up during the Frank Robinson, Brooks Robinson era. Winning close to 100 games was a given every year. It is sad to see how far the O's have fallen over the past 10 years. I'm not sure Angelos will get the message and even if he does, he won't care. I'm sure my uncle rolls over in his grave every time the O's lose. He was the director of old Memorial Stadium and loved his O's.

posted by dbt302 at 12:28 PM on September 22, 2006

Saw this on the news last night and I'm proud of the fans for making a statement. Even though Angelos got the money, a point was made. Wasn't it just a few years ago the Orioles were consistently in the top-five of payroll, going after guys like Albert Belle? But they were paying money mostly to the wrong guys. Just two years ago Angelos went out and got Tejada, I believe he was reigning MVP and the most sought after free agent in baseball. And Javy Lopez had just come off a monster year for Atlanta. I think a few things are at play. For one, Angelos is gonna sit on his money until he sees just how much the presence of the Nationals actually costs him (for years he fought it maintaining they shared the market and the Orioles would suffer if DC had a team) and maybe he sees how old the Yankees are and wants to wait them out for another year or two. The fact that the O's haven't threatened for the division in awhile is as much a testament to the success of the rest of the division as it is to the O's suckitude.

posted by vito90 at 01:08 PM on September 22, 2006

I am a true all around baseball fan but this team obviosly needs help they took a big gamble on sosa and it failed they also seem to fade away as the season draws into June every year I am a Cub fan and I wish fans would all walk out of wrigley field if they keep putting the same product on the field next year I don't want to get into specifics about this year but it wasn't all their fault anyhow wait till next year Orioles and Cubs

posted by luther70 at 01:34 PM on September 22, 2006

That was great. Nice to see some passion from those Orioles fans. I remember actually at one point being more worried about the teams they fielded moreso than the Red Sox or Yankees. Twas in my yout', though - and that was not a short time ago anymore. Angelos deserves to be embarassed publically. He's stuck his beak into baseball decisions that he has had no business to. The O's have consistently made piss-poor free agent choices and terrible trades.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 02:33 PM on September 22, 2006

Ask an Expos fan These Orioles fans have my utmost respect.

posted by qbert72 at 02:35 PM on September 22, 2006

What's the big deal? I was watching them on TV the other day, got bored and walked out of the room.......(yawn). Just talking about them makes me sleepy. Hello Starbucks....give me a triple-shot Venti coffee...ASAP!

posted by jzonker at 04:07 PM on September 22, 2006

For Peter Angelos to say publicly that anybody else has "delusions of grandeur," well, hello, irony!

posted by The_Black_Hand at 04:19 PM on September 22, 2006

This guy doesn't seem to be a tight-wad, he just seems to be incapable of making a good baseball decision. Everytime he brings in a potential difference maker, they take a dump. Sosa, Palmiero, Tejada, Lopez, etc... I'm not a big fanof the O's but those are the ones I can think of, I know they paid a lot for a pitcher who took a dump too, but cant even remember the schmucks name. It seems like the whole franchise needs a makeover.

posted by LaKeR4LiFe at 05:02 PM on September 22, 2006

I think that Angelo's (or his GM) have definately made some poor personel decisions over the last decade but I wouldn't say that they haven't tried. Right now they are 15th in team salary which unfortunately doesn't do it in the AL East. As A Red Sox fan, I should point out that having the #2 salary doesn't do it in the AL east. They have signed quite a few free agents over the last few years. Sometimes you just don't bring in the right guys, again as a Sox fan I can identify with this kind of mistake

posted by kyrilmitch_76 at 05:19 PM on September 22, 2006

All those poor GMs have been hamstrung by Angelos and Sons. They are hands-on owners and their clumsy thumbprints are on a number of bad free agent signings. They finally stopped signing high-priced elderly used-to-bes, but they've yet to replace that philosophy with something else or even indicate a plan is in development.

posted by yerfatma at 05:33 PM on September 22, 2006

Oh, He got the message when they walked out because it made the news which brought bad press his way. If he needs to up the ticket prices a few dollars, people will still come the game. He needs to learn from some of the other bottom feaders like the Cubs (GO CUBs) that you need to involve the fans into the game with fun nights and other promotions. Wouldn't cost him anything, that's all advertising $$, but it gives the team a better image. Most importantly you reorganize management with people who know what the game and know what they are doing. The O's aren't the only team with this problem, just the one with the exposure.

posted by Psycho at 08:20 PM on September 22, 2006

Everytime he brings in a potential difference maker, they take a dump. Sosa, Palmiero, Tejada, Lopez, etc... I'm not a big fanof the O's but those are the ones I can think of I agree that Angelos has run the franchise into the dumpster and needs to sell the club. But c'mon- you can not include Tejada in that group. He has put up MVP like numbers every year with the franchise despite having no protection in the lineup or much support. He is the ONLY thing I can think of that Angelos has done properly. That being said- I am not an O's fan at all. I just respect the hell out of Tejada. If not for him, they would be lucky to win 50 games this year.

posted by urall cloolis at 08:57 PM on September 22, 2006

give me a triple-shot Venti coffee...ASAP! You are exactly the fan that Angelos is after. One that does not care about paying 6 bucks for crap coffee. He knows he will get his money off of overpriced food and beverages, from people that do not care about wins and losses, just status of saying "I go to Camden Park (or Starbucks). My apologies if you are from Seattle- everyone else knows that 7-11 coffee is much better and 5 bucks cheaper.

posted by urall cloolis at 09:07 PM on September 22, 2006

I don't see what this accomplished. Of course the fans gained attention, but will this actually incline the owner to keeep pouring money into the team? Baltimore plays in a divison loaded with talent, inluding the two teams with the highest payrolls. Tampa and Toronto are up and coming, and of course they can't all make the playoffs. I think that in the offseason they could make a run at a top notch free agent, but I don't see this generating many more wins. Tejada seems to be on his way out, so maybe that would free up some valuable salary relief.

posted by Kendall at 09:16 PM on September 22, 2006

That is probably exactly what Angelos will do- dump the only player that consistently contributes (Tejada). He will probably do it and spend the money on trying to bring Barry Bonds to town and hope he gets his picture in the paper with Barry if he sets the record in 3 years (at 10-15 homers a year). Of course Angelos will be surprised when Barrys large cranium doesn't leave any room in the pic for Petey.

posted by urall cloolis at 09:24 PM on September 22, 2006

Peter Angelos is an ass. That might very well be. But he is a very rich ass supported by the working stiffs who pay inflated prices to see a losing team.

posted by joromu at 10:17 AM on September 23, 2006

I don't see what this accomplished. The fans voiced their opinion about how the team has been run, and it got national attention. National attention = embarassment for Angelos = possibility of lighting a fire under his ass? Even if it's a slight possibility of lighting a fire under his ass, it's at least something. Squeaky wheel theory.

posted by jerseygirl at 10:47 AM on September 23, 2006

I apologize for the Tejada comment, I guess the fact that the Orioles rarely even make it on TV out here on the West Coast skewed my opinion. Although, I wouldn't quite call his numbers MVP calliber, definately team MVP but not close to league.

posted by LaKeR4LiFe at 05:51 PM on September 23, 2006

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