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Orioles move Brian Roberts to the bottom of the lineup

Mar 29, 2013, 2:50 PM EDT

Brian Roberts AP

Brian Roberts has spent nearly his entire career as a leadoff man, hitting there in 93 percent of his 1,200 starts, but the Orioles have decided to shift him to the bottom of the lineup as he comes back from multiple concussions.

Roberts took the demotion well, basically saying that he’s happy to simply be feeling healthy for the first time in years and understands at age 35 a less prominent role would probably make sense regardless of health.

Of course, if Roberts returns to anything resembling his old form–which included a .364 on-base percentage and 35 steals per 150 games from 2004-2010–the Orioles will want him back atop the lineup soon enough. For now though he’ll bat ninth for the first time since 2004.

  1. psuravens19 - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:02 PM

    Here’s to a healthy season B-Rob!

  2. natstowngreg - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:08 PM

    A wise position on Roberts’ part. Over the last 3 seasons combined, he’s had 459 AB over 115 games. First priority is to be in the lineup at all.

  3. rbj1 - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:27 PM

    He’s 35?
    Geez, I watched play for the South Carolina Gamecocks his junior year.

    • biasedhomer - Mar 29, 2013 at 7:35 PM

      Couldn’t believe it myself either.

      He was a pretty solid (and underrated) 2B for a span of about 5 years, then the injuries happened, and now he’s suddenly 35 years old.

  4. therealbigben - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:30 PM

    Brian Roberts still thinks its 2004 :P

  5. scoocha - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:32 PM

    Casualty of roids.

    • DJ MC - Mar 29, 2013 at 4:23 PM

      I guess TECHNICALLY ‘roid rage could have caused him to hit himself in the head with a bat, and perhaps drugs many have affected some of his other injuries, but I don’t see how performance-enhancers could have caused a concussion on a head-first slide. A bit of a stretch, if you ask me.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Mar 29, 2013 at 7:09 PM

        It was totally roids. In fact, in that game in September in ’05 when Cortico Stanazol, playing for the Yankees, collided with Roberts at 1b and dislocated Robert’s elbow. It’s unfortunate that Cobalamin Palmeiro wasn’t available to help him heal, and Roberts was out for the rest of the season.

  6. fat4jc - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:45 PM

    that’s weird, I had no idea PED’s and concussions had anything to do with one another.

    • asimonetti88 - Mar 29, 2013 at 4:35 PM

      According to the NFL, concussions do not exist and PEDs are not a problem.

  7. sanzarq - Mar 29, 2013 at 4:30 PM

    I hate long-term contracts in baseball. I expect if they were all analyzed, you’d find that most of them were bad investments.

    This one has been a bomb (and I’m an O’s fan & live in the Baltimore area). When Roberts name is brought up, I usually say “Brian WHO”??? I wish we had kept Robert Andino & dealt Roberts away, but his market value was nil. He should play for the O’s next year for FREE (assuming they would even want him).

    • yogibear77 - Mar 29, 2013 at 6:27 PM

      As a fellow O’s fan, are you high?

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Mar 29, 2013 at 7:12 PM

      Depends on your definition of long term contracts doesn’t it? Are we talking 5+ years, 8+, what? Right now I’m thinking anything over 6 and I can name just as many good ones as bad (Good – Arod’s first, Jeter, Manny, Mussina, Giambi, Bernie Williams; Bad – Arod’s second, Helton, Vernon Wells, Crawford, Hampton, etc).

  8. rlj2170 - Mar 29, 2013 at 7:11 PM

    Roberts will have a good year and work his way back to being his old self again. I wish him well

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