Newly minted Orioles manager is set to introduce a new and controversial method for preparing his squad for the upcoming season, at a time when the Orioles’ stadium attendance is at an all-time low and their pre-Showalter performance had been biblically terrible. The technique’s codename: Glower Power.
Mr. Showalter minced no words and took to the field to demonstrate the effectiveness of Glower Power in our interview, as the Orioles were performing drills at their Sarasota training camp.
“Check this out.” he remarked, as the young lefty pitcher Zach Britton sent a pitch into the dirt. Mr. Showalter was ready to put his technique into action; he promptly squinted his eyes furiously while frowning, raised his fist with a slight shake and deeply grumbled the word “Zaaaaaaaaach.” Britton immediately and sheepishly averted his eyes, straightened his back, and threw a 134 mph pitch.
Impressed, we asked for another demonstration. Happy to oblige, Mr. Showalter walked us to a nearby batting cage, where Luke Scott was honing his swing. As Scott was cracking away, Buck explained the process: “You see, every man has a hardwired aversion to the implied threat of father or grandfather-like violence. When one of my guys underperforms, I give them the impression that I’m going to rap them over the head with my wedding band, just like their fathers probably did when they were kids. With every Glower, we see immediate improvement.” Just as Mr. Showalter had finished this sentence, Luke Scott missed a pitch from the ball machine. Showalter immediately snapped his brow into a furrow, slowly shaking his head from side to side while tapping his belt buckle with one fingertip. Visibly disturbed, Scott sent the next pitch directly back at the machine, shattering it into twelve thousand pieces. “See?”
The decision to utilize players’ fear of Pop-Pop like violence is bound to be controversial to some, who might see the method as a form of mental torture. But the Orioles are no stranger to unorthodox methods in their quest to achieve a winning average of 0.500 or less. Last year, then manager Dave Trembley instituted the use of actual Orioles Magic in order to summon clouds of bees, a giant hell maw and blood sacrifices to deter opposing teams from succeeding. Later that season, Trembley was replaced in the interim by a Cal Ripken bobblehead, prior to Buck Showalter’s arrival. Possibly most notably, Orioles owner Peter Angelos was slated to replace the entire Orioles roster with Velociraptor superclones, a plan which failed miserably at a loss of some $400 million when the superclones revolted, broke out of their facility and subsequently invaded Smith Island, where they currently live in peace as primitive but efficient watermen.
Whether Glower Power, like so many other techniques, will be effective while balancing the controversial negative effects remains to be seen.