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On the Orioles Protest

And I thought my posts were too long. The people behind tomorrow's "Take Back the Birds" campaign have a mission statement that clocks in just south of 3,500 words. "Angelos" appears 23 times. "Bad" appears 11 times. Prominent descriptions include disgruntled, disgusted, disenfranchised, suppressed, betrayed, ignored, abused, depressed, fragmented, unprecedented, snubbed, neglected, insulted, etc. Imagine if these people were Devil Rays fans.

(Also, the rally update clocks in north of 1,500 words, and uses the caps lock feature an astounding 42 times.)

(Is there more gurgling fan anger about Daniel Snyder or Peter Angelos? Discuss.)

(Also, what would happen if every franchise were actually a well-run, responsive example of shining ownership brilliance? Wouldn't odds indicate that some teams might still finish in fourth or fifth place? Actually, I guess every team could finish .500, and then fans would only be angry at whomever was flipping the tiebreaker coins.)

Anyhow, a brief history of recent fan walkouts:

1998: An estimated 100-200 Bengals fans take off at the start of the second half of a late-season game, falling slightly short of the goal (20,000). A columnist writes that the protest "fizzled like a typical Bengals third-quarter offensive drive." Sports Frog remembers.

1999: Royals fans protest MLB's economic disparities with a shower of fake dollar bills and a trail of skulls and crossbones. The franchise responds with one winning record in the next eight seasons.

2002: Disgruntled MLB fans plan several nationwide boycotts over labor issues. Results seem spotty, although there was no work stoppage and D.C. wound up with a team.

2005: Some rugby fans protest something in South Africa, which somehow involved scantily clad women wearing boots. This would appear to be the most successful fan protest of all time.

2005: Devil Rays fans protest against Managing General Partner Vince Naimoli with a seventh inning display that is enthusiastically dubbed "small." But Naimoli is now just a partial stakeholder in the team, decision-making powers have been transferred and partial stakeholder without decision-making ">a recent game attracted 12,000 loud fans. So take hope, O's fans.

By Dan Steinberg  |  September 20, 2006; 2:17 PM ET
Categories:  Weirdness  
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Next: What You Need to Know, Wednesday Afternoon


I can't say I care for either Snyder or Angelos, but at least Snyder puts money into his team. Angelos is bitter and deliberate. I still think he feels burned by the Albert Belle fiasaco. He has to get over it. Snyder's front office, meanwhile, exhibits more cronyism than Bush's administration. (Maybe I jest.) As a result, he receives no negative feedback for his awful offseason moves.

Posted by: Colin | September 20, 2006 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Snyder's moves are at least motivated by WANTING to win. He may not be the brightest bulb on the tree, but at least he means well, and tries to win.

Angelos, on the other hand, is just worthless. I am glad we have the Nationals, or I would have given up on baseball. And, I LOVED the O's as a kid, the first game I ever attended was game 6 of the '79 World Series...

Posted by: Jerry B | September 20, 2006 3:48 PM | Report abuse

I would agree about Snyder's intentions and commiserate with you both, but I'm a Pats fan, and both the owner and management of the Pats are wicked awesome. So suck on that Skins fans!

Posted by: The Delicious | September 20, 2006 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Snyder will learn. Remember Stienbrenner and how the Yankees used to suck...

Posted by: Jerry B | September 20, 2006 5:56 PM | Report abuse

Less Angelos/Snyder - more scantily clad protesters in boots...

Posted by: jhorstma | September 20, 2006 6:38 PM | Report abuse

Here's the ultimate fan protest: Fans of Wimbledon FC in England were so incensed that their team was relocating that they formed an entirely new team.

Posted by: SE Podcast | September 20, 2006 11:34 PM | Report abuse

First of all, this rally couldn't have come at a worse time. Angelos has FINALLY started to think clearly and has stopped buying old past their prime deadbeats that he thinks will win him a championship. He has finally adapted the proven strategy of using his farm system. Roberts, Gibbons, Markakis, and Loewen are our future, and he has finally realized it. And I have news for you, our farm system pitching is regarded as the next 1990's Atlanta Braves Line-up. So I commend Angelos for what he's finally doing, now whether it will make up for season after season of losing records is another thing. But I'd rather loose doing it the right way with these young guys than having Angelos try to be the Yankees only cheaper and not being able to afford the good old timers.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 21, 2006 2:22 PM | Report abuse

What about the Fire Millen protest-turned-cultural signpost? I don't know how effective the "Millen Man March" was, but there are at least two FireMillen websites and an entire Wikipedia article devoted to the topic.

Posted by: DD | September 21, 2006 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Angelos is a piece of sh@t who screwed DC out of baseball for years. When he dies, I intend to find his grave, and urinate on it.

Posted by: Jerry B | September 21, 2006 10:48 PM | Report abuse

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