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For the Orioles, the action yesterday wasn't on the field but in the warehouse, where the winds of change blew a stiff breeze not only through the clubhouse but also through the front office.

In the long run, it may not be the managerial change that has as much impact on the Orioles and their fortunes as the shift in the climate at the top of the administrative organizational chart. Or at least, the two will be equally important.

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Soon, what we all already know will be announced, that Andy MacPhail, who ran the Twins and the Chicago Cubs, will be in charge down at the warehouse. The word is that he will have a fair amount of autonomy in running the club. That has to make Mike Flanagan and Jim Duquette, the guys who were making personnel decisions, somewhat nervous. But it also means for the fans that a single person, with more authority than Flanagan and Duquette combined, will be making the key decisions not only on who will be on the roster but also formulating a strategy about the amount of money to spend and how. MacPhail is both a baseball guy and a money guy. He served with owner Peter Angelos on MLB's negotiating committee in talks with the players union.

While the team travels to the West Coast for a series in San Diego, the real business will be played out as MacPhail and some contingent of Orioles representatives reach out to former Marlins manager Joe Girardi, now an announcer for the Yankees.

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To my thinking, there is no doubt that the Orioles will be disassembled and rebuilt over the next nine months, and it's already begun.

* For some teams, the games still do matter, and Los Angeles Angels third baseman Chone Figgins had the game of his life, going 6-for-6, including the game-winning triple in the bottom of the ninth to lead a 10-9 Angels comeback over Houston. The Astros led by five runs in the seventh inning (Figgins had the game-tying RBI in the bottom of the seventh). Figgins, who's 5 feet 8, is the first player since the 2004 season to have at least six hits in a game. The last player to do it was was Seattle's Raul Ibanez.

* LaVar Arrington's saga should be a sobering one for all of us who watch sports. Arrington, a linebacker with the Redskins and Giants, sustained serious injuries in a motorcycle accident (he was wearing a helmet and his injuries are not life-threatening) that certainly will hurt his chances of trying to catch on with another NFL club.

The fast-forward version of Arrington's career: He was drafted by Washington in 2000; made three Pro Bowls; suffered a knee injury; ran afoul of Joe Gibbs' coaching administration; left the Redskins after buying out his contract and signed with the Giants; then tore his Achilles' tendon in October and was cut by New York earlier this year. I doubt that he has any NFL career left, and here's the kicker to the story. He's just turning 29 tomorrow.

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