BraveOriole, thanks for asking.
Although he was a very weak hitter (which is probably what Over40 remembers about him) Willy Miranda did have a reputation as an excellent fielder. Because the baseball gloves of the 1950's weren't nearly as good as those of later years, his fielding percentage doesn't compare well with the likes of Mark Belanger and Ozzie Smith, but he was regarded as a top-notch fielder in his day. He was also considered to have an excellent arm.
I remember that there was a publication of some sort of other - at this late date, I don't remember whether it was a magazine or a newspaper - that ran a series of articles featuring tips from big league players. When the series started, they printed a list of all the players who would be featured in the series, and Willy was on the list.
I was thrilled. This was at a time when Baltimore generally languished in the bottom half of the American League standings and most baseball fans paid very little attention to the Orioles, so the fact that an Oriole was to be featured in this series indicated that somebody regarded him as pretty special - and not only were they going to put an Oriole in there, but it was going to be my favorite player to boot.
I eagerly awaited the tip from my hero, but when it came out, Willy talked about throwing, and emphasized the importance of getting a wrist snap into the throw.
I wanted so much to emulate my hero, but I didn't have the foggiest idea what he meant by snapping my wrist or how to do it when I threw a baseball.
Of course, given the fact that I couldn't hit, hit with power, run, or field very well, the fact that I didn't immediately pick up on the technical fine point of how to snap my wrist when I threw is probably not the only thing that kept me from being a big league shortstop. :)
I dunno about all time worse cuz that would obviously be a bunch of players we don't remember, but here's my all time list of Orioles I actually hated in a metaphorical imaginary line up card:
1. Jeffrey Hammonds cf : He was supposed to be everything Adam Jones is, and we are still waiting for him to blossom.
2. Jay Gibbons rf : Another bad player that had us scratching our heads for a long time.
3. Cal Ripken Jr. SS : Brett Favre doesn't hold a candle to the biggest Iron Man diva to ever to hold a team hostage.
4. Glen Davis 1b : Bats clean up just like his trade cleaned the O's farm system. We would never get another batch of players that good for another 20 years.
5. Luke Scott DH : I hated having to root for that racist trash.
6. Leo Gomez 3b : His two -way badness hurt me personally since he was from my home town. His errors were even more maddening than Reynolds.
7. Felix Pie LF : The only every day line up he will ever be in.
8. Geronimo Gil C : Catcher is one position we have been pretty lucky with through thick and thin, even the retreads played Ok.
9. Billy Ripken 2b : He's an ok chap and I like him on baseball tonight, if he hadn't been forced down our throats by King Junior I would have liked him as a scrappy UT. But even in this lineup he bats 9th.
SP: Sidney Ponson : Of all our failed pitching prospects this guy manged to be the biggest D about it.
RP : Kevin Gregg : Good gawd he is awful
Pennington is a good one. I saw Ken Griffey almost hit one of his straight-line 100-mph fastballs off the Warehouse. Pennington was "earnest," at least. There have been some guys who were just "rotten apples" on their teams.
Steve Kline and Ken Holtzman come to mind in that regard. Kline dissed his team-mates and blamed "anybody and everybody" for his poor pitching.
Holtzman (who came to Baltimore in April of 1976 with Reggie Jackson in the trade for Don Baylor and Mike Torrez) was negative from the moment he got to Baltimore from Oakland. He made it very clear that he wanted to leave, encouraged Jackson to go to the Yankees (which didn't take much of a nudge), and reportedly influenced Bobby Grich to seek Free Agency.
The Orioles lost out in that trade because Jackson, who had a solid 1976 season for the Orioles, left. They also lost Baylor, who was a great Oriole. But Holtzman was an awful influence on the team and the Orioles had to trade him midseason.
The saving grace was that the Orioles were able to trade him on June 15, 1976 (with Doyle Alexander, Jimmy Freeman, Elrod Hendricks and Grant Jackson) Yankees for Rick Dempsey, Tippy Martinez, Rudy May, Scott McGregor and Dave Pagan.
"Holtzman (who came to Baltimore in April of 1976 with Reggie Jackson in the trade for Don Baylor and Mike Torrez) ..."
Mike Torrez pitched one season here and won 20 games despite leading the league in walks. Pretty interesting one season he had.
I don't know how he did on the field, but he's a mean real estate sellin' machine in upstate NY.
Broker Owner and Team Leader at Miranda Real Estate Group, Inc.
"Everyone forgot that highly touted Ryan Minor. "
Did someone already mention Billy Rowell, and in time Matt Hobgood. lol
Adam Loewen, Larry Bigbie, Matt Riley... the list goes on.
I don't think it's fair to include guys like Hobgood, Rowell, Beau Hale Mike Paradis and Richard Stahl who never made it to the majors. They were disappointments because they were unsuccessful draft choices. They weren't even Orioles, much less "bad Orioles."