O's focused on improving team, not skipper

O's focused on improving team, not skipper

BALTIMORE -- Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail said prior to Tuesday's game that the organization's focus is on improving the team, and not on manager Dave Trembley's job status.

"[My response is] the same thing I've told everybody: Our complete energy and focus is on doing the things we need to do to improve the situation on the field," MacPhail said. "It's going to be getting more timely hitting; part of that is going to be wrapping up the game at the end. Those are the two things that probably need the most improvement at this present time."

Trembley is in his third full season at the helm, taking over as interim manager after Sam Perlozzo was dismissed June 18, 2007. Entering Tuesday's game, he has a career Major League record of 175-260.

The 3-16 Orioles are off to the second-worst start in franchise history, prompting fans and media pundits alike to openly question Trembley's status as manager. Prior to the start of the season, MacPhail made it clear that the Orioles are out of the rebuilding Phase 1 and onto Phase 2, meaning Trembley will be judged more on winning than in seasons past.

While expectations were high this spring, the Orioles have dealt with a rash of injuries -- including the loss of leadoff man Brian Roberts and closer Mike Gonzalez -- and their offense with runners in scoring position is a Major League-worst 8-for-74 (.108).

"I'm at the point now where I think maybe we got all the bad out of the way, we got it all out of the way early," Trembley said.

"It's been very, very difficult. I know the expectations here have been built up and people have been hurt. The players have been hurt too. I've been hurt. I've been hurt because I haven't lived up to winning games for everybody. But we intend to do it."