by Matthew Taylor
This trip Around the Horn makes a special stop in the NL East to visit Mr. Met's blog ring. Our travel to New York’s "second city" for baseball is only fitting since the biggest O’s news of the past week involves former Mets.
Kris Benson’s doing the Hokie Pokie with the Birds ... “You can pencil me in, you can pencil me out, as I take my rotator cuff and shake it all about” … which led the team to sign another ex-Met, Steve Trachsel.
Earlier this week, our very own Chris Heun discussed the “Ex-Cubs Factor” and a potential “Ex-Orioles Factor.” Could there be an “Ex-Mets Factor” to boot? Like celebrity deaths, these things tend to come in threes.
Shea Stadium’s our virtual destination this week; don’t be distracted by the roaring planes overhead. Put on your away jersey with Baltimore on the front, says Oriole Magic, and join us for a trip Around the Horn.
First: It is easy to condemn, it is better to pity.
From the “Just when you thought things couldn’t get any worse” file, we’re being pitied by Mets fans. The good news is that some of the comments are pretty funny.
Them Mets says it all in this headline following Benson’s injury: “Today I Feel Sorry for Orioles Fans.” There’s also some chest thumping about “who got the better of the Kris Benson/Jorge Julio/John Maine deal” and finally, more pity: “Just to add insult to injury, those poor suckers could end up with Steve Trachsel. Nobody deserves that.”
Hey, not every deal can bring you Melvin Mora in return for an aging Mike Bordick.
YardBarker offers another funny headline, “The Baltimore Orioles: Where Old Mets Pitchers Go To Die,” with some added commentary from the poster, Harvey Bars: “The Baltimore Orioles have agreed in principle to a deal with former Met, Steve Trachsel, which is a plus, because if you're like me, you found yourself last season thinking ‘Man, I wish Orioles' games were longer.”
Bugs and Cranks offers the sharpest out-of-town jab: “News of the rotator-cuff injury that will likely end Kris Benson’s season before it gets started sent shockwaves through the small/miniscule part of the US population known as Oriole Nation.”
The good news for members of Oriole Nation is that we’ve got spelling on our side. More from Bugs and Cranks: “Benson was penciled in as the number two starter behind Eric (sic) Bedard.”
For those scoring at home, or even if you’re alone (source: Keith Olbermann … or Steve Somers), Bedard put the “K” in Erik 171 times last season.
At least Mets Heads was kind: “I wish Steve the best of luck down there though as he is the last of the ‘old’ Mets to leave.”
Second: Hometown Humor on the Trachsel signing.
From Camden Chat: “Welcome to Baltimore, Steve Trachsel! Now, we likely project your mediocrity!”
Oriole Central sums it up best: “Benson is nothing more than an average pitcher who can eat innings, but he’s our average pitcher who can eat innings.”
Third: Picture This!
Baseball players are feeling romantic these days, even injured Orioles pitchers whose wives filed for divorce less than a Spring Training ago. Dawn Alexander has the visual proof.
Kris Benson is in good company with Phillies outfielder Pat Burrell, who had his wedding proposal documented. The 700 Level provides the photographic evidence on this one.
Leave it to the Mets’ rivals from the City of Brotherly Love to share some love with Burrell. "Well wishes" in the comments section on The 700 Level include the following:
-“I wonder how much gasoline it will take to burn his little black book. I give it about 10 days til he beds some well-dressed, hair-messed Old City bar trash”
-“This woman looks classy. Where the heck did he meet her? And what an unusual pose for Pat the Bat. Him on his knees rather than the woman.”
Cue the Elton John.
Speaking of love and pictures, you can catch photos of Larry Bigbie and Erik Bedard on the Great Lakes Bass Fishing website. The site also features pictures of former Love Connection host Chuck Woolery.
I’d love to see Woolery do a guest spot on MASN this season ... “And that’s it for the home half of the 8th. Okay, O’s fans, we’ll be back in two and two.”
I’ll admit it’s a long shot. At least we’ll get to see Rick Dempsey doing Birds games. Surprisingly, the new O’s blog Dempsey’s Army doesn’t offer a take on the catcher’s move to MASN. Come on Dempsey's Army, he’s your namesake!
Going Yard: Fat Boy Slim
It’s fitting, as we touch home, to bring things full circle with talk of ex-players in new destinations. Turns out ex-Oriole Sidney Ponson isn’t in the witness protection program; he’s in Minnesota.
Win Twins knows what the team is in for: “I decided to start with the player who will likely add the most drama to our clubhouse - even if it's just speculation on when/if he'll get his next DUI.”
A confused Ponson jumped at the chance to sign a deal with the Twinkies.
And that's a wrap. You stay classy, O's fans.