Archives for category: Baltimore Orioles

Round one is in the books.

The NFL Draft has come and gone and now it’s time for round two. For the teams that didn’t make the post-season, it’s a chance to improve their place in the standings. For those that were in the playoffs last year, it’s a chance to return to the post-season party. For the Eagles, it’s a chance to defend their title, while the other 31 teams will want a chance to knock them off the mountain. For all 32 teams, it’s a chance to knock off some rust and see what talent they have and will eventually need.

The National Football League announced the calendar for voluntary offseason workout programs, which are intended to provide training, teaching and physical conditioning for players. The calendar for 2018 is below.

As per Article 21 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, each club’s official, voluntary nine-week offseason program is conducted in three phases:

Phase One consists of the first two weeks of the program with activities limited to strength and conditioning and physical rehabilitation only.

Phase Two consists of the next three weeks of the program. On-field workouts may include individual player instruction and drills as well as team practice conducted on a “separates” basis. No live contact or team offense vs. team defense drills are permitted.

Phase Three consists of the next four weeks of the program. Teams may conduct a total of 10 days of organized team practice activity, or “OTAs”. No live contact is permitted, but 7-on-7, 9-on-7 and 11-on-11 drills are permitted.

Article 22 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement stipulates that clubs may hold one mandatory minicamp for veteran players. This minicamp, noted below, must occur during Phase Three of the offseason program.

New head coaches are entitled to conduct an additional voluntary veteran minicamp. Any voluntary minicamp for veteran players had to be conducted prior to the NFL Draft (April 26-28) but no earlier than week three of the club’s offseason workout program and after at least one week of the two weeks of Phase One activities that the clubs may hold pursuant to Article 21. This year, seven clubs will hold voluntary veteran minicamps, as noted below.

Each club may hold a rookie football development program for a period of seven weeks, which in 2018 may begin on May 14. During this period, no activities may be held on weekends, with the exception of one post-NFL Draft rookie minicamp, which may be conducted on either the first or second weekend following the draft. The dates of each club’s post-draft rookie minicamps are noted below.

For specific information and detailed offseason program rules, please see Articles 21 and 22 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement (beginning on page 131), available on nflcommunications.com.

The NFL Offseason Workout Program calendar (dates are tentative and subject to change at the discretion of individual clubs):

ARIZONA
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 15-17, May 22-24, June 4-5, June 7-8
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

ATLANTA
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 21, May 23-24, May 30-31, June 1, June 4-5, June 7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

BALTIMORE
OTA Offseason Workouts:  May 21-22, May 24, May 29, May 31, June 1, June 4-5, June 7-8
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 4-6

BUFFALO
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 29-31, June 4-5, June 7-8
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-12

CAROLINA
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 29-31, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-12

CHICAGO
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 15-17, May 22-24, May 29-31, June 1
Mandatory Minicamp: June 5-7
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

CINCINNATI
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 29-31, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

CLEVELAND
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 29-31, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 4-6

DALLAS
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 29-31, June 4-6
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

DENVER
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 29-31, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

DETROIT
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 21-22, May 24, May 30-31, June 11-12, June 14
Mandatory Minicamp: June 5-7
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

GREEN BAY
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 21-23, May 30-31, June 1, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 4-6

HOUSTON
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 21-22, May 24, May 29-31, June 4-5, June 7-8
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

INDIANAPOLIS
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 30-31, June 1, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

JACKSONVILLE
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22, May 24-25, May 29, May 31, June 1, June 4-5, June 7-8
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

KANSAS CITY
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 29-31, June 5-8
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 5-7

LOS ANGELES CHARGERS
OTA Offseason Workouts:  May 22-24, May 29-31, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

LOS ANGEELS RAMS
OTA Offseason Workouts:  May 21-22, May 24, May 29-31, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-12

MIAMI
OTA Offseason Workouts:  May 22-24, May 29-31, June 11-14
Mandatory Minicamp: June 5-7
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

MINNESOTA
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 29-31, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 4-6

NEW ENGLAND
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 21-22, May 24, May 30-31, June 1, June 11-12, June 14-15
Mandatory Minicamp: June 5-7
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

NEW ORLEANS
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 29-31, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

NEW YORK GIANTS
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 21-22, May 24, May 29-31, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-12

NEW YORK JETS
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 29-31, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 4-6

OAKLAND
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 29-31, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 4-6

PHILADELPHIA
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 29, May 31, June 1, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

PITTSBURGH
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 29-31, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

SAN FRANCISCO
OTA Offseason Workouts:  May 21-22, May 24, May 29-30, June 1, June 4-5, June 7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 4-6

SEATTLE
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 21-22, May 24, May 29-30, June 1, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 4-6

TAMPA BAY
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 29-31, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

TENNESSEE
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 21-22, May 24, May 29-30, June 1, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-13

WASHINGTON
OTA Offseason Workouts: May 22-24, May 29-31, June 4-7
Mandatory Minicamp: June 12-14
Rookie Minicamp: May 11-12

 

 

What if they played a baseball game and no one came? No ticket takers, ushers, food vendors. Just the players, the umpires, coaches and media. What if no fans were allowed to come in, not even for free?

Unfortunately, due to the violence that took place in Baltimore this week, that’s what happened. Wednesday at 2:05 p.m. Eastern, for the first time in the history of Major League Baseball, that game took place between Baltimore and the Chicago White Sox. It was a game that took 2 hours and three minutes to play and the home team came away with the win by an 8-2 score with an announced attendance of zero.

Zip.

Zilch.

Nada.

Nihil.

You get the picture.

While there are bigger fish to fry than a baseball game, some would say that those that work at Camden Yards were inconvienced by the behavior of those that chose to riot, throw rocks and bricks at police, loot, steal and burn things down were right in being angry. There was loss of property due to theft and fires, not to mention destuction of police cars

Yes, you have a right to be angry with your government and your police department and yes, you have a right to protest. You don’t have the right to burn that which is not yours, loot and pillage and throw rocks at the people that are trying to serve and protect you. Things were a bit calmer Wednesday in Baltimore as people protested peacefully in the downtown area. Some fans that were wanting to watch baseball, if only for a few hours to ease their minds from the violence that rocked their city, stood outside Camden Yards, yelling “let us in.” The Orioles should or could have at least let them come in for a few minutes but chose not to take police officers that were needed in other parts of the city for stadium security.

Freddie Gray was laid to rest Monday. While there were some that called for calm, others took matters into their hands and chose to throw rocks and bricks at police, who were trying to help them. Granted, the Baltimore Police Department has some blood on their hands as well but the real problem are those that chose violence instead of listening to each other. This is not what he would have wanted, this is not what anyone would have wanted but it happened. If he were alive, he would probably tell those that looted, stole, burned and attacked police, “not in my name.”

Wednesday, while a baseball game was played in an empty stadium with only players, umpires, media and essential staff present, a city tried to regain its composure. It’s still an uneasy peace with a 10 p.m. curfew still in place. Adam Jones, star outfielder for the Orioles, told the media in the post-game conference, “It’s not the easiest [situation to be in],” Jones conceded Wednesday, before the Orioles played a home game behind locked gates with no fans in attendance. “But I understand.” Jones, who is the face of the franchise, is also the city’s higest-profile African-American athlete.” For the past week, as streets in his adopted city were overrun with looters and fires raged after Gray, a young African-American man, died while in police custody, it has taken a toll.  Jones went on to say “I say to the youth, ‘Your frustration is warranted. The actions, I don’t think are acceptable.’ If you come from where they come from, you understand. But ruining the community that you have to live in is never the answer due to the fact that you’re going to have to wake up in three or four days and go back to those convenience stores, go back to all these stores. “This is their cry. This isn’t a cry that is acceptable but this is their cry and therefore, we have to understand it. They need hugs. They need love. They need support. As much as I can give, as much as I know people on the opposition can give, I’m going to try and give as much as I can, because the city needs it.”

The problems of the world or the city of Baltimore cannot be repaired overnight. It doesn’t work that way. For a few hours, two teams took batting practice and played a baseball game, while the rest of the city held its breath, hoping that there would be no more violence. It was almost sureal, as if no one noticed or cared, described in Thursday morning’s USA Today by White Sox outfielder Adam Eaton “It’s kind of Field of Dream-ish – just a baseball game.” There was a National Anthem, there was a seventh inning stretch and the Orioles did play John Denver’s “Thank God I’m A Country Boy” during the stretch but aside from the media, grounds crew, ball girls and players that were there, it was quiet at Camden Yards, for some a bit too quiet.

What if they played a baseball game and no one came?

More specifically, what if no one was allowed to come?

Wednesday afternoon in Camden Yards, that very thing took place and unlike the tree falling in the forest, someone at least got to hear it. The Orioles and White Sox for a few hours played a game that no one got to see. There was frustration and that frustration was understandable but given the events that actually took place Sunday, the safety of the city trumped the needs of the fans. If Freddie Gray were with us, he would have told those that wanted to go to have a good time, have fun and be safe. The Orioles were to play Tampa Bay at Camden Yards this weekend but the powers that be decided to move the games to St. Petersburg’s Tropicana Field, where the Orioles will be the designated home team.

When the Orioles return May 11th against Toronto, hopefully things will be somewhat calmer and there will be normalcy. People will be getting ready for work, school and the Preakness that will fill the city with residents and visitors to Charm City.

And baseball that fans can see in person.