As the calendar flips to February, here are three things we’ll be keeping an eye on around the baseball world throughout the day today:
1. Orioles face decision on Camden Yards lease:
The Baltimore Orioles face a deadline today to pick up a one-time option that would extend the club’s lease at Camden Yards for five more years. Currently, the organization’s lease is set to expire on December 31st of this year. Orioles ownership, Commissioner Rob Manfred, and Baltimore mayor Brandon Scott have declared that the Orioles will remain in Baltimore long term, regardless of the uncertainty surrounding the club’s stadium situation going forward. Another temporary extension that pushes back the option, as the Orioles agreed to in 2021 when their extended their lease through 2023, would be an alternative that preserves the five-year option safety net. While shorter-term options abound for the Orioles organization, Nathan Ruiz of the Baltimore Sun notes that a longer-term lease would allow the Orioles to take advantage of a 2022 state law that would allow $600MM to be borrowed to make improvements to Camden Yards.
2. MLB celebrates National Girls & Women in Sports Day:
MLB Youth Academies across the country will be hosting events and activities today in celebration of National Girls & Women in Sports Day, with events taking place in Cincinnati, Compton, Kansas City, New Orleans, New York City, Philadelphia, and Washington D.C. Events previously scheduled to take place in Houston and Dallas will be postponed until February 15th due to weather concerns. In addition to these events, the Commissioner’s office will be hosting a networking event and panel discussion that includes a tour of the MLB offices in Manhattan.
3. Signings to be made official:
Despite reports to the contrary, the Royals did not make their one-year agreement with future Hall of Famer Zack Greinke official yesterday. MLB.com’s Anne Rogers reports that the Greinke signing can be expected to be made official later this week, most likely on Thursday. Whenever the deal is made official, Kansas City will have to clear a 40-man roster spot to make room for Greinke. Another reported signing that has been left outstanding to this point is the deal between catcher Roberto Perez and the Giants. If that also proves to be a big league deal, the Giants will need to make a 40-man move as well.
Brandon Scott’s name should never be mentioned anywhere about anything. He is a worse mayor than Lightfoot. When the governor sends you a letter asking what you are doing with billions you got to stop crime, there is an issue.
H E Pennypacker
Brandon Scott said the same thing about you, yet, here you are.
I would be more than happy to discuss this and other things with him. You should come too. I would love for you to prove that you are not as dumb as your last message.
I’ll never understand why people think anyone cares about their politics in a baseball comment section. This has nothing to do with this post at all. Just go shout your dribble into a pillow.
There is no way that the O’s move out of Baltimore, IMO. Everyone wants this storied franchise to stay and there are a handful of teams who “should” move before the Orioles
It’s kind of related. Baltimore is listed as the #23 most violent city in the world. Part of the issue with funding a stadium is whether or not it will increase tourism in the area. Being #23 is probably not a good drawing card.
Could be worse. Could be Bakersfield. Or Florida.
It’s inextricably linked, unfortunately. For example, one of the main stories today is: Girls’ and Women’s Sports Day celebrations. That is about as political as it gets when MLB, an all-male sports league, celebrates the fact women participate in sports…..somewhere. It doesn’t necessarily bother me, but that’s my observation.
Normally I agree – keep politics out of sports. Unfortunately, all sports seem to intentionally insert politics and political agendas into their leagues as a priority when fans simply want to use sports to escape from it. Sports is the one social setting where people with different cultural, political, and social views can come together and root for the same team, without any bias or arguments. Sports leagues seem determined to ruin that.
YC, there are female execs, coaches, players, and umpires in professional baseball. While the number is small, it’s growing. I have no issue with acknowledging and celebrating their participation, which overall has been – and continues to be – discouraged by many.
I have no problem with wo.en execs, writer’s, or umpires. But there should NEVVER be women playing in the majors leagues. They should just play in their own league because men are stronger than women. Most couldn’t’t keep up with the men.
Many men are stronger than many women but that’s not a universal truth.
Giancarlo Stanton is stronger than Miguel Rojas, so should Rojas not be playing in the majors?
Most men can’t keep up with major leaguers.
If a woman some day has the baseball skills to compete at the major league level, let her play.
@avenger – If they can play, then they can play. It would be an incredible rarity, but why disqualify prior to seeing what they can do?
True story…some years ago I was holding tryouts for the last spot on my old man’s team. Perhaps ten showed up by invitation….vetted on the phone or by reference only. The league wanted to see if I would “allow” a woman to try out – she had been bugging the league but no other team would even meet with her (saying the usual garbage). Former USWNT in soccer; also was playing in a women’s baseball league for a few years. Clearly she was a heck of an athlete. Held the tryout, it was just BP and fielding practice.
She wasn’t bad at all, but would not have made it in the league. It was still a 25 and up age limit at that point and there were a lot of very good players. She could hit a little; was only ok in the field. She would have utterly kicked our collective asses on the soccer pitch, but wasn’t quite there for baseball.
Long story short, I did not offer a spot to anyone from the tryout. She was miffed…got in my face a bit. Told me that she was going to call a lawyer. I said fine – feel free to sue me and my beer league, old man’s baseball team. Never heard from her again.
The point being, however, if she was good enough to help the team I would have added her in a heartbeat. Who frickin’ cares?
It does seem to bother you, Clipper, otherwise why would you bring it up?
Baseball is a business. It would be pretty stupid of the league to ignore half the population when they’re trying to generate interest in a sport with the oldest fan base of all the major sports.
Fink, it was in response to the comment that politics and sports should remain separate. I was merely pointing out that MLB itself is doing something overtly political today by celebrating women/girls in sports, generally. I wasn’t inferring it was wrong because I don’t care either way.
So to clarify, I understand what GBS wrote about women in FOs & umpiring. Likewise, I understand what you are saying about appealing to the female demographic. But that just verifies my point – it’s a political decision as much as a monetary one.
Keep in mind, although my writing “political” is automatically assigned a negative connotation, the term in this case is neutral, just an observation. So, no, it doesn’t bother me. But I do believe it’s one example of how MLB links political goals/motives with sports.
This seemed pretty sarcastic, to be honest:
“That is about as political as it gets when MLB, an all-male sports league, celebrates the fact women participate in sports…..somewhere.”
Well, I can see it from your perspective. It was intended to reflect that MLB is obviously not doing this as a baseball-related activity (the political side), nothing more.
There are, however, certain politically-motivated decisions MLB carries out that I vehemently disagree with. I’ll refrain from naming those here though. Overall, I think this is innocuous.
@YC and FP – I think that everyone overdoes the “keep politics out of everything” argument, anyway. Politics is a part of almost everything in life, and when one states “never talk politics or religion in mixed company”, or “keep it out of (the dinner table; sports) etc.” it just basically means that folks are unable to handle their business without being a jerk about it.
All of sport is influenced on a daily basis by politics, just as is everything else. We need to deal with it, rather than run from it. Talk about it…share it…open our minds to what others are saying when they state it clearly and have an actual argument (as opposed to just proclaiming garbage that they have heard and don’t understand).
“I have no problem with wo.en execs, writer’s, or umpires. But there should NEVVER be women playing in the majors leagues. They should just play in their own league because men are stronger than women. Most couldn’t’t keep up with the men.”
Like you could.
‘”As of April 2015, 161 women have lost their lives and 1,015 had been wounded in action as part of Global War on Terror (GWOT) operations” since the 9/11 terror attacks, according to the Congressional Research Service. The Army alone reported 89 women killed in the line of duty in Iraq and 36 in Afghanistan.
‘”In addition, in modern combat operations, over 9,000 women have received Army Combat Action Badges for ‘actively engaging or being engaged by the enemy,'” the CRS said.
‘Through 2012, the Army reported that 437 women earned awards for valor to include two Silver Stars, three Distinguished Flying Crosses, 31 Air Medals, and 16 Bronze Stars.
‘In releasing the report, then-Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno said “It should be clear to all that women are a major force in operations today. We’re not starting from the ground up in the assessment period” on whether women should serve in combat. “Women are integral in all theaters of combat as we speak.”
‘In some instances, the women earning awards for valor led men in firefights. Then-Army Capt. Kellie McCoy, a West Point graduate, earned the Bronze Star with “V” device for her actions on Sept. 18, 2003, for leading 11 male paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne Division in breaking up an enemy ambush between Fallujah and Ramadi in Iraq’s Anbar province.
‘Her citation said that “Capt. McCoy willingly and repeatedly took action to gather up her soldiers under enemy fire and direct fire at the enemy. Her actions inspired her men to accomplish the mission and saved the lives of her fellow soldiers.”‘
But she shouldn’t be allowed to play baseball?
There will come a day when you will eat your words. But you can stay pleased with yourself for at least a few more years.
@JRT – Stadium and infrastructure funding, development and improvements, economics and tax issues are some of the very definitions of political decision-making. Hard to avoid when this is the subject matter.
Could you clarify the claim of “billions” that the city got specifically to stop crime?
The entire city budget is about $4 billion, and the increase in the police budget this year is an extra $5 million on a total police budget of about $500 million.
Perhaps you shouldn’t be so cavalier in calling others dumb, at least until you have a firmer grasp of some relevant facts.
If you’re going to lie, go big.
There absolutely must be a team in Baltimore. One of my favorite all-time teams is the 1895-97 Orioles, long considered the dirtiest team in the history of baseball.
“When the governor sends you a letter asking what you are doing with billions you got to stop crime, there is an issue.”
Given that the entire budget for the Baltimore Police Department is $560.4 million, it appears that you don’t know what you’re talking about. Maybe better to stick to baseball. There might be a chance you know more about that.
Camden Yards opened 31 years ago this April. Would hope that such a stadium would see a much longer life. Work out the lease, work out any improvements. Too nice a stadium otherwise to see it bulldozed.
+1. Such a beautiful place with a blend of new and old. It would be sad to see it scraped. I live in Texas and as much as it was nice to see a retractable roof in Arlington, their newer stadium is an architectural eyesore. Sometimes, you never know what you’ve got until it’s gone.
I think it will. You’re right about everything you’ve noted. Had the pleasure to see Cal Ripken play there a few times. Beautiful, nostalgic park.
31 years, friggin’ A.
Certainly doesn’t feel like it was quite that long ago when my dad and I attended our first game at Camden Yards around 2 or 3 weeks after it opened on a dreary, chilly April afternoon (against the Tigers IIRC). I wore shorts and didn’t bring a jacket and was absolutely MISERABLE the entire time lol.
Time flies, huh?
Modest political comment not intended to rile anyone. In Washington, our nation’s leading politicians are meeting to discuss budget cuts and the risk of defaulting on our obligations. This is not the venue to pick sides. But at the state/local level, when it comes to assistance to billion-dollar sports companies…well, there’s almost always assistance available. Camden Yards is a terrific stadium, and I’m old enough to remember Memorial, which was really bad. Camden Yards was part of an urban renewal plan that did a lot of good. Is there “good” for the city in this guarantee package, or is it just a transfer of wealth to private hands?
Love Camden Yards, and there is no way that they should move the team. But I am kinda’ tired of the need to publicly fund these things to the extent that occurs most of the time.
The lifespan of a typical stadium does seem to be around 30 years so it needs reinvestment. Work it out equitably; stop posturing and get it done at Camden Yards. The location still works for the city, and has anchored quite a bit of redevelopment
The problem now for the stadiums that are up for renewal (heck, even CBP in Philly is now 20 years old) is that the ownership groups have seen the massive real estate development opportunities that can come into play if they can find another location with that kind of potential. The city and state need to tell them that if they are looking at that, then you get nothing from us…plus you cannot do anything until you fulfill each and every prior obligation in full.
If you want to play the game that these franchises are private concerns, then do EVERYTHING privately (including road access, utilities and other infrastructure) and you can move your team at will. Of course, since they already enjoy massive antitrust exemptions that really does not work either. Owners need to clearly understand that these teams are a civic responsibility, and indeed are partly owned by the community in a real way…even beyond all of the corporate welfare and other tax dollars..
For stadiums in general, has too much been heaped upon the backs of taxpayers though the years? I mean, there are many billionaires who own the teams and put very little into them.
For OPACY you have to wonder about the location. I was always partial to Memorial’s atmosphere (OPACY was stuffy), but Memorial was a pain to get to while OPACY was very accessible from 395. But the urban renewal that started with Harborplace in 1981 and spread to Camden Yards’ 2 stadiums, the Pratt Street corridor, and investment in rebuilding places like Fells Point, Canton, and Federal Hill….all that has passed. Crime is up even in the nice areas like Little Italy, where there was nary a car broken into back in 1992. I would take the bus down for a game at 17 in 1992 and then walk over to the Harbor to wander around after without a second thought. I would never let my 17 year old do it now. As neutrally worded as possible…there seems to be no plan for improving the city in general outside of the Under Armor complex further down. If the lease is renewed, what does that area look like in 2042? Or do you find a place outside the city accessible by highway but in a safer location, and put up a smaller capacity stadium since you only fill this one on opening day? (Because of the Nats you’re probably limited to north or northeast of town, like Hunt Valley or off 43 in White Marsh).
That would eliminate areas like Fredrick and even west of the city from going. With traffic, at that time, Hunt Valley would be at least an hour. Taxes are insanely high already but I wouldn’t be surprised if citizens of Baltimore are asked to pay. A little for more for Scott and a little less for everyone else.
They put a very competitive team on the field, the fans will come back. They have been run on the poor side for some time now!
dpsmith – while Frederick is a bigger place it is also an hour (with traffic) west of Baltimore, and about the same distance from DC. Certainly DC would fight any stadium that is put west and/or south of where Camden currently sits.
Back in the 70s they had a plan for an “outer beltway” similar to Rt 100 on the south side which could connect 795 near Reisterstown via extension/improvement of Shawan and then carry it east over to 95 in southern Harford County. That would make a Hunt Valley stadium 45 minutes away from all but the southern suburbs. I think the environmentalists combined with the rich folks and the horse farm owners along the route shot it down.
Environmentalism and misguided community activism is responsible for much of Baltimore’s traffic woes. That’s why 70 eastbound does not connect to 83 or 95, forcing all traffic (including trucks/industrial) onto 695 in both directions to clusterf–k all.
Because of those circumstances I think the hope is they can again revitalize downtown similar to the changes made with the advent of Harborplace in 1980 while having limited funds and being very soft on crime…good luck.
I’ve never been to Camden Yards but it seems like there’s very little reason to move. Camden has been one of the nicest stadiums (from what I’ve read) in MLB for a long time. They should move that eyesore in LF back to its original position though.
Get bent. Anyone bitching about the LF wall is a child.
You are a beacon of maturity, sir.
Who owns Camden Yards?
Ken Griffey Jr!
(the State of Maryland/tax payers)
Good one O’sSay – I was going to reply David Ortiz, including one dugout phone!!
O’s – I was going to say Frank Thomas who seemed to bat .900 with 1 or 2 HR a game each time they visited.
C Yards Jeff
Frank Thomas. A bad man. Gulp. Even Mussina couldn’t figure him out.
Orioles and Ravens, both Camden Yards tenants, “ain’t going nowhere”. The MD General Assembly, the states version of Senate and House lawmakers, made sure of that last year by approving 1.2 billion (600 mil per venue) in taxpayer funding for improvements to Oriole Park and M&T Bank Stadium.
I love Camden Yards. I guess I should go see a few games this year. Too bad its surrounded by the City.
Ok, having read the comments, and after trying to be non-political about Camden, I’m going to stick my toe into National Girls And Women In Sports Day. I don’t know why it’s a big deal. Baseball is a business.. It needs customers going through turnstiles and tuning in on screens. The more women it attracts, the more successful it is. It just doesn’t bother me. For context, I’m an old jogger (old enough to have gone to Memorial). I like to run in the NYRR races….thousands of runners and half the turnout is women. I’d rather not get passed, by either men or women, and I get passed a lot because I’m old and slow. But beyond that, it’s a blast to do and plenty of good vibes. That’s the way I feel about baseball. A blast to watch and plenty of good vibes. Not going to worry about small stuff, like whether there’s a message being sent.
I get passed a lot because I’m old and slow.
I said something similar above, but with weights. How would you feel if they singled you out with an “old guy running day”?
I figured this comment section would be a playground for racists and incels.
The incels, in particular, really brought their A games today.
“Why is baseball reaching out to half of their potential customer base!?!?!?!?!?!??!?!?”
“Everyone I disagree with is LITERALLY Adaph Hortler!”
Lighten up Fas*ist Francis.
The real issue to be raised is Organized Baseball whitewashing its efforts to keep women off the ballfield.
Pam Postema would be umpiring in the major leagues had she come along today. There was a woman in the wartime all-girls league who got a tryout offer with a major league ballclub thanks to her slick fielding. Baseball fought long and hard to block these women.