Dan Connolly offers a nod to Thrift and his much-repeated "confederate money" phrase over at Orioles Insider.
Call this the “Courting of Paul Konerko 2.0.”
The first version occurred in the 2005 offseason, when the Orioles’ brass had a clandestine meeting with Konerko and offered a five-year, $65 million deal to the then 29-year-old first baseman. He decided to stay with the Chicago White Sox for $5 million less, prompting more jokes about the Orioles’ “Confederate money.”But nothing says Syd Thrift quite like"minor league prospect" Gary Dell'Abate. Jeff Labrecque interviewed the real Dell'Abate, who referenced Thrift's broadcast misstep in 2000.
(I’m still quoting Syd Thrift all these years later. God rest his soul.)
Not counting the famous pop-cultural shout-outs, like to Peter Jennings during the O.J. Simpson Ford Bronco chase, but what’s the strangest place you’ve gotten a Baba Booey shoutout?
I’m not very religious but I went to church a couple of times after 9/11. There was this woman wearing this very matronly dress and when she handed me the program whatever, she leaned in and just said, “Big fan, big fan. Baba Booey.” I just thought that was really funny because she did not look the part at all. Just shows you, the fans are everywhere.
One of my favorite stories of yours didn’t make the book and actually involved your given name. I’m a Baltimore Orioles fan and—
The Syd Thrift story? I love that.
They’ve been bad now for so long and that story kind of encapsulates their impotence.
That made it in to Sports Illustrated, as part of a story about how dysfunctional the Baltimore Orioles organization was. I love that one. Have you ever heard the actual call? Syd Thrift actually says, ‘Oh yeah, [Gary Dell' Abate] is one of our big prospects. He’s coming along.’
Orioles Baseball: As much fun as a trip to the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort.
Related Reading: Flashback Friday: Revisiting a "Thrifty" Trade Deadline