Ups and downs
Cal Ripken * UP * Did Baltimore proud in the All-Star Game. Again. Everybody there was talking about he stood and signed autographs in the awful Texas heat.
Arthur Rhodes *UP* If the Orioles don't have a spot for him in their rotation, they may consider using him against left-handed hitters
Chris Hoiles *UP* Since July 4, he's been hitting nothing but rockets.
Manny Alexander *EVEN* Been playing very well, in general, but it seems as if his errors invariably come in the eighth and ninth innings.
Jeff Huson *UP* His job as the O's utilityman appears safe. Can fill in for Manto at third.
Thursday's loss *DOWN* Aaargh. You gotta win when you come back from a 6-0 deficit. Gotta win.
Sid Fernandez *DOWN* Maybe he's better suited for NL. Based on how he pitched for the Orioles, that's not exactly a ringing endorsement of the Senior Circuit.
"Anybody who gets released is going to be disappointed, but you pick up your heels and you go on... I've got a lot of things to look forward to." _ Sid Fernandez, after being released.
STAT OF THE WEEK
Rafael Palmeiro ended an 0-for-25 streak on Thursday night with a double against the Kansas City Royals, the longest hitless streak of his career.
THE WEEK AHEAD
Monday-Tuesday, at Texas. This series is way too short. Think of all the great stories waiting to happen _ Rafael Palmeiro against the Rangers. Johnny Oates against the Orioles. Kevin Brown pitching against Texas. Could be some serious fireworks. Rangers are playing well, so one win in two games would suffice.
Wednesday-Thursday, at Minnesota. Now they don't have Scott Erickson or Rick Aguilera, and Kirby Puckett is talking about wanting to get out of town next year. The Orioles had a chance to sweep the Twins before the All-Star break and botched it, but this is a must-sweep series.
Friday-Sunday, at Kansas City. Another down-trodden team, although the Royals' speed should help them in this series. O's will, unfortunately, have to face Kevin Appier for the third time this year on the series' finale.
Left-hander Sid Fernandez earned a little over $7 million in his 1.5 years with the Orioles, and for that he won six games _ or, approximately $1.2 million per victory.
But give El Sid credit in this regard: He kept the weight off. When he arrived at spring training, Fernandez weighed 225 and everyone assumed that it was only a matter of time before he porked up. But at his final weigh-in with the Orioles, Fernandez checked in at 228 pounds.
A MOVE THAT PAID OFF
The trade for Scott Erickson paid immediate dividends, when Erickson beat the Chicago White Sox, 11-2, in his Orioles debut ** last Sunday.
AND ONE THAT DIDN'T