Is it me or does Buck Showalter slightly resemble Earl Weaver in an O's uniform? No neck, light gray/blonde hair popping out of the sides of his cap?
Am I the only one who thinks Showalter sounds like Boss Hog from "Dukes of Hazard" when he speaks?
Did anyone notice the players seem to actually be taking a manager seriously for the first time since Mike Hargrove?
Not to take anything away from Lee Mazzilli, Sam Perlozzo, or Dave Trembley, but I've never seen the clubhouse so serious and on their toes.
It's as if a new sheriff is in town and the players know this head dog has won, has managed players much more successful than themselves, and isn't looking to hand out pats on the back. I get the sense - barring players with long-term contracts like Nick Markakis and Brian Roberts - the Orioles truly believe their jobs are in Showalter's hands and they'd better make a good impression.
I'm pretty realistic about the state of the Orioles, and it truly surprised me today how different the mood was in the clubhouse. I think "scared" is the wrong choice of words, but I'd definitely say the Birds are not underestimating Showalter and his "play hard or we don't need you" approach.
My impressions of the skipper are that he's sharp, quick witted, and he'll call you out (reporters included) if he catches you on your heels. He definitely gives a vibe that he's in charge, but he seems like a person you could joke around with.
I think the players will like him - If they play by his rules.