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Kenny Lofton?

The Orioles supposedly are running third in the race to sign Kenny Lofton. This is one instance where they should shoot for fourth.

  I know the club really soured on Luis Matos, with various officials noting how he seemed out of shape and lazy. Guys in the bullpen would watch in horror as Matos got another late jump on the ball, and how he often didn't seem ready as the pitch was being thrown. They'd joke about how casually he stood in center field as the ball was being delivered to a batter, as if he was waiting through a pitching change. But I don't see where Lofton, well past his prime, is a huge upgrade. If it's just a matter of keeping the position warm for Val Majewski or Nick Markakis, find somebody else.

  Unless he's undergone a major personality change, Lofton is known for being a problem in the clubhouse. Remember those Indians teams that included Lofton, Albert Belle and Eddie Murray? Back then, Manny Ramirez seemed stable by comparison. And Lofton didn't win many friends in Atlanta. The Orioles not only need to upgrade their outfield production, they need to improve their clubhouse chemistry. I'm not sure Lofton is the solution.

  Speaking of Ramirez, one of my favorite baseball stories involves the night of the famed O.J. Simpson white Bronco slow-speed chase. The Indians were watching the bizarre scene unfold on their clubhouse televisions after a game, totally captivated by it. Ramirez, not known for keeping up with current events, asked what had everyone so interested.

  "The police are chasing O.J.," someone said.

  To which Ramirez replied: "What did Chad do?"

Only Manny would have assumed that pitcher Chad Ogea was fleeing police.

  Ramirez once asked an Indians beat writer if he could borrow $40,000. Taken aback by the request, the reporter said, "Um, Manny, I don't have $40,000."

  "Well," Ramirez replied, "you can write me a check."

 

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Roch, Various websites are posting a White Sox deal with the Diamondbacks swapping Vazquez for Hernandez trade. Given the O's interest in him when Bettie was 'lead' GM and his potential as an O's staff ace, do you thinik this might continue to fuel Miggy's fustration at frot office atrophy? He's the kind of pitcher who could hold a grudge against the Yankees for shipping him out after one season that would be perfect for another AL East team.

Roch, I remember Kenny making an incredible cathc over the centerfield fence at Camden Yds when he patrolled the Inidians CF circa '96/97. That's about a decade ago. Also Daniel Synder about signing players past their prime (i.e, Deon, Armstead, etc). MLB is not a fantasy league game - Matos has better physical skills than Lofton at this pt in their careers. Sam (et al) just need to crack his lethargic defensive approach to the game.

The fact that the name Kenny Lofton is even being mentioned scares the hell out of me. Why not throw in $ 500 and get Joe Carter with him in a package deal?

This is the kind of stuff that makes Miggy want to play baseball in Mexico.

another great pair of Manny stories...as to Lofton he is only a worthwhile addition to a team in a stretch drive ...the Giants used him to help win down the stretch then quickly cut all ties with him...from the start of free agency I have expected them to go after Juan Encarnacion he is an excellent defensive right fielder with power and speed..The Orioles should be thrilled if Majewski who has been injury prone in the minors turns out to have the solid career in the big leagues that Encarnacion has had. Remember this..Encarnacion was a top 10 prospect in all of baseball when he was in the same position yet his career can be summed up as a solid journeyman....as to Matos you can only count on him for 2 trips a year to the DL anything else is unrealistic.....

Roch: I live in north Florida, and go to the Sun on-line each morning to see what my O's are up to. Your blog has been a blast to read. Keep up the good work.

Why do you think that Kenny Lofton, a.k.a.
K-Lo, is on a different team every year? Maybe nobody wants him around. Hopefully, he won't sign with the O's.

Roch,
Two years ago, my wife and I toured Fenway Park after seeing the O's and Bosox play. It was early April and there were only a handful of us in the tour group so the guide, a retired old gent, was telling us some of the juicier gossip about some of the Sox players. Seeing your comment about Manny asking for the $40k, made me remember of the stories he told us. He said, Manny asked one of the clubhouse boys to have his car washed the day b4 they retn'd from a long road trip. The boy said he gladly would but he did not have any $$. Manny told him just to get in the glove box, there was money there. The boy found $60k in brand new $1000 bills. Imagine paying for a car wash with a $1000 bill.
Regards, joel

Why not let Matos start the year at AAA-Ottawa until he decides to grow up and be a professional? I think that he is a spoiled, immature guy who needs more minor league time to appreciate the privilege, not right, to play major league baseball.
Kenny Lofton? Frank Thomas? Why? It's because of these kind of "knucklehead" moves that has Tejada looking for the first flight out of Charm City. Wake up front office-WE NEED PITCHING!

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Roch Kubatko covers sports for The Baltimore Sun. E-mail Roch.

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