Greenberg gets minor league deal from Orioles

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Greenberg gets minor league deal from Orioles

Adam Greenberg is getting a chance to resume his baseball career with the Baltimore Orioles.

The 31-year-old returned to the major leagues for one at-bat in October, more than seven years after he was beaned in his debut. He agreed to a minor league contract with the Orioles and will have a chance to earn a job at their Triple-A farm team in Norfolk, Va.

``To get the opportunity with the Orioles means everything to me,'' he said Saturday.

He had contacted Baltimore manager Buck Showalter at the winter meetings this month in Nashville, Tenn.

``I just walked up to him, introduced myself,'' Greenberg said. ``I've always kind of looked at Buck and said that would be the guy that I would love to play, that type of hard-nose mentality.''

Showalter put him in touch with Orioles special assistant Brady Anderson and general manager Dan Duquette.

``I'm going to spring (training) with the opportunity to make the Triple-A squad,'' he said. ``Being 31, they said I'm not going to be going to Double-A and taking away a prospect's spot. It's Triple-A, big leagues - obviously I'm not going to make the big league team out of camp - it's Triple-A, big leagues or nothing, and that's great.''

Selected by the Chicago Cubs in the ninth round of the 2002 amateur draft, Greenberg made his big league debut as a pinch hitter on July 9, 2005, and was hit on the back of his head with the first pitch from the Marlins' Valerio de los Santos. Greenberg sustained a concussion and was removed for a pinch runner.

Released by the Cubs in June 2006, he had minor league stints with the Los Angeles Dodgers and Kansas City Royals, the speedy outfielder signed a minor league deal with the Cincinnati Reds and was cut at the end of spring training, hampered by a rotator cuff injury. He spent 2009, `10 and `11 with the Bridgeport Bluefish of the independent Atlantic League.

After a petition on Change.org urged a big league team to give him another chance, the Marlins signed him and sent him up as a pinch hitter on Oct. 2 against New York Mets knuckleballer R.A. Dickey. Greenberg struck out on three pitches against the eventual NL Cy Young Award winner.

``The last few years have been very, very difficult and challenging, but I got myself physically where I need to be and more important than anything, mentally I'm at a point in my career where I'm able to commit 110 percent back to the game,'' he said.

His agreement was reported by several media outlets on Thursday.

NOTES: Baltimore assigned OF Steve Pearce outright to Norfolk on Friday.

Showalters announce plans for October KidsPeace race

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Showalters announce plans for October KidsPeace race

BALTIMORE—Six months from today, Buck and Angela Showalter will host their 7th annual KidsPeace 5K Trick-or-Trot at Oriole Park at Camden Yards.

KidsPeace benefits foster parenting, and it’s a cause the Showalters feel deeply about. 

Angela Showalter speaks fondly about her upbringing with two parents and an extended family, and notes that the children she and her husband are trying to help, are lacking the basics. 

“These children don’t even have a parent. They don’t even have the village to get started in,” she said at a luncheon to announce the race on Friday. 

“It’s so amazing how the one little bit of attention they feel like they’re getting from the race carries so much weight with them.”

Foster children often move, and don’t have a firm foundation.

“They often leave a parent who is probably very dysfunctional,” Angela Showalter said. “They have things that are being ripped away from them constantly.” 

Buck Showalter has become very active with KidsPeace and told a story of one of his staff members, who adopted a child who had behavioral issues. 

“He was talking about the impact of KidsPeace the other day, and that he wished his daughter had had that help when she was at that age when she wasn’t adoptable,” Showalter said. 

The registration fee is $30 between now and May 20. For more information, visit www.kidspeace5K.org. 

 

Orioles sign Wandy Rodriguez to minor league deal

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Orioles sign Wandy Rodriguez to minor league deal

BALTIMORE – The Orioles have signed left-handed pitcher Wandy Rodriguez to a minor league contract. 

Rodriguez has reported to Sarasota, Fla. for extended spring training. 

The 37-year-old has a lifetime record of 97-98 with a 4.10 ERA in 11 years with Houston, Pittsburgh and Texas. 

Rodriguez was released by the Astros on Apr. 5. 

The Orioles needed an extra starter at Triple-A, and Rodriguez will go to Norfolk for now. 

News of the signing was first reported by Baltimorebaseball.com. 
 

One year since Orioles' fanless game, an anniversary I'd prefer to forget

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One year since Orioles' fanless game, an anniversary I'd prefer to forget

BALTIMORE – This is an anniversary I’d rather forget. Many people are writing about the fanless game that took place one year ago today, and I should be one of them. 

I was there. I saw it. 

I remember the same details everyone else does. Chris Davis throwing balls into the empty stands, Caleb Joseph pantomiming signing autographs, and the fans at the nearby Hilton cheering. 

But, for me, that week was one of the worst experiences of my life. 

As a 36-year resident of Baltimore, I had seen many things, but on the night of April 27, when the Orioles scheduled game with the Chicago White Sox was postponed because of the riots, I tried to get home as quickly as I could. 

My home, in Baltimore’s Bolton Hill neighborhood, is just over a mile from where much of the rioting occurred, and I needed to be home. 

Without traffic, I’m home in 10 minutes, and at the beginning of my trip, I thought I’d easily do that. There was no traffic on the streets, but halfway home, I saw a line of police dressed in riot gear, and I had to make a detour.

A detour past smashed windows and some ransacked stores. 

I sped through a couple of red lights and heard a radio report that stores in my neighborhood had been looted. Just then, I saw some kids walking down the street with boxes, presumably of stolen goods. 

I made it home safely, but later found that my car hood had been damaged. Some kids jumped on it, I guess. 

The next few days were awful. 

While I waited for news on the fate of the scheduled Orioles games, neighbors went to the nearby stores to help them clean up. 

And, after the fanless game was played, the Orioles prepared for their hastily scheduled series in Tampa Bay where they would be the home team.

It would have been interesting to see that, but I was needed at home. 

For several days after the riot, there was a 10 p.m. curfew, and police helicopters continually circled about our house. I can still feel the noise a year later. 

The Fifth Regiment Armory is a few blocks away, and when the National Guard was deployed, that’s where they went. 

It was disturbing seeing armed tanks not only downtown when I went to get a haircut and go shopping, but more upsetting seeing the Guard riding around my neighborhood.

In the last 12 months, crime in our neighborhood and the city is up, but our neighbors, many of whom are close friends, haven’t abandoned their homes. 

It’s a neighborhood with many advantages. It’s close to downtown, restaurants and attractions, full of people who help each other in times of need. 

A year later, the Orioles and Chicago White Sox, the team they faced in that game are playing again tonight. I’ll be happy to concentrate on that game instead of the one everyone remembers.