Because he's a MASN broadcaster, Hall of Famer Jim Palmer is often found in the home and visiting clubhouses at Camden Yards. In this edition of his MASNsports.com blog, Palmer explains what he's doing when he chats up pitchers and players - from visiting clubs or the O's - before games.
I used to be young. It's hard to believe, but I see Orioles and visitors' guys going through the same things (I did). My style of broadcasting is - obviously I work for the Orioles - but when I do games, and I did national games ... you watch a lot of TV (to scout). I taped Tuesday night's game and watched (Wednesday's) game live. I know (Los Angeles Angels manager) Mike Scioscia and played against him in spring training and it's just a way of staying in touch with the game and what you're trying to do. Knowledge is power, whether it's the Orioles or not, and you try to keep abreast of what's going on.
I'm not sure they always really know who I am. I always try to tell them who I used to be. I met (Boston's) Alfredo Aceves, who's from Mexico ... and somebody, when I was talking to him, said, "He used to pitch and he was good.'=" I sent him over a "Reggie ball" - Reggie Jackson used to have "Reggie Jackson, #44, Hall of Fame, Mr. October" - everything. So when I go up there to do games, we'll see if I run into him and he maybe knows now who I used to be.
When Cincinnati came in, I was talking to Dusty Baker when I did the Sunday game and (Edinson) Volquez had really struggled. He happened to walk by when I was talking to Dusty and we were talking about him and I said, 'He's got good stuff, but he just has trouble commanding his fastball or trust it, or maybe doesn't think it's as good as it is.' Dusty called him in, he sat and we had a conversation. We talked about how you try to establish command.
I probably talk sometimes more to the opposition because they seem to be more readily willing to have them talk to the pitchers. Buck (Showalter) has talked about that. I had a conversation with Brad Bergesen the other day because I really want him to do well. I talked two springs ago with Jake Arrieta. It would be kind of interesting to see how he goes about preparing for his starts. But nobody's ever asked me, so I just observe.
The best story is (Toronto catcher) J.P. Arencibia. I just introduced myself when they were here and we went up to Toronto the next week and he says, "I want to apologize. I Googled you and I realized you were really good."