Talking Trachsel and Bradford

A mystery was solved today. Steve Trachsel can pitch in relief without breaking out in a cold sweat and running into traffic.

A little mop-up duty, if that’s what you want to call today’s assignment, seemed to do him good. And it certainly came at an opportune time for the Orioles, who were in danger of frying their bullpen.

Next mystery: What are the Orioles going to do with him from here?

When I approached Trachsel at his locker after today’s game, he looked at me, grinned and said, “So now can I stay?”

I’m a little surprised that Chad Bradford was so annoyed by the media wanting to interview him about Manny Ramirez’s 500th home run. He left the clubhouse last night before we were allowed inside, and he was clearly agitated today.

Hey, I don’t expect him to do summersaults, but it was a milestone home run, served up by a guy who normally keeps the ball in the park. We had to talk to the pitcher, whether it was Bradford or someone else. That’s how it works. The questions were softballs, lobbed with great care. That’s about all we could do to make the situation tolerable.

Someone asked me last night whether it was “out of character” for Bradford to avoid us after the game. I’ve only had positive dealings with him in the past, but honestly, how often do you interview a set-up man? It’s usually the starting pitcher, and maybe the closer. Unfortunately, it takes a crucial mistake – think Jamie Walker vs. Carlos Pena – for a pitcher in Bradford’s role to make the papers. You don’t often hear, “Hey, tell us about that hold.” And that has to be annoying to the Chad Bradfords of the world.

I guess it comes with the territory, but that doesn’t mean they have to like it. And I try to take that into account in situations like this one.

The next time Bradford throws a scoreless inning, I hope I’m in position to wait him out and get a comment, just to be fair.

Ravens running back Willis McGahee threw out the ceremonial first pitch today. He stood in front of the mound and lobbed the ball.

I think he should have tucked it away, broken a few tackles and run it to home plate.

McGahee said he’s thrown out the first pitch on one other occasion, before a Miami Hurricanes  game. Today’s atmosphere was significantly more intimidating.

“I was a little nervous,” he said. “I knew it was on television. I was about to throw the ball and one of the kids was like, ‘You better not mess up,’ and I was like, ‘Oh Lord, don’t put the pressure on me.’ But I did it. I’m glad it’s over with.”

I haven't heard someone say that since my honeymoon, but I digress...

Adam Jones was on the receiving end of McGahee's throw and made sure the ball didn't end up at the screen.

“When I released it, I said, ‘Oh, it’s high. Don’t go over his head.’ But he caught it,” McGahee said.

Down on the farm, Fernando Cabrera threw another scoreless inning for Triple-A Norfolk, walking two and striking out one. He hasn’t allowed a run with the Tides, but he’s having a little trouble finding the plate.

Bob McCrory blew the save, allowing a two-run homer to Syracuse’s Danny Sandoval in a 5-4 loss.

At Double-A Bowie, Brad Bergesen improved to 6-1 by allowing only one run in seven innings, with seven strikeouts. Nolan Reimold had an RBI double.

Single-A Frederick’s Tim Bascom took a shutout into the sixth inning before allowing three runs in a 5-2 loss to Myrtle Beach.


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