Brian Roberts unlikely to attend fan event due to concussion, but Orioles want him to sign autographs

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Brian Roberts missed the final four months of last season due to aggravating a concussion suffered in 2010 and Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun reports that the second baseman is not expected to attend the Orioles’ “fan fest” event as he continues to struggle with post-concussion symptoms 16 months after the initial injury.

Roberts was scheduled to attend the event and the Orioles have sold tickets to get his autograph, prompting executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette to say:

I hope he goes to the autograph session. I don’t really know any reason he can’t show up to sign autographs for 10-year-old kids. I am not aware of anything that would prohibit him from doing that.

Duquette is new to the job and Roberts has been in Baltimore for the past 11 seasons, so that’s not exactly a great way for their relationship to begin. Roberts, like Justin Morneau and Jason Bay and several other players in recent years, is trying to fight his way back from a maddeningly unpredictable injury that can ruin careers, so while the physical act of signing some autographs may not seem like much of an effort the fact is that concussions can make seemingly innocuous activities a major struggle.

And whatever the case, publicly calling out the longest-tenured member of the team within your first couple months of taking the job seems like a mistake. The bigger concern, of course, is that if Roberts can’t sign autographs in mid-January what are the odds he’ll be able to play baseball games in March?

Enrique Hernandez apologizes for saying Dodgers fans had no energy last night

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The Los Angeles Dodgers has a pretty flat Game 3 in the NLCS, striking out 14 times and losing 4-0 to fall into a 1-2 hole in the best-of-seven series.

After the game, Enrique Hernandez called out the fans at Dodger Stadium, saying Game 3 didn’t “feel like a playoff game” because of a lack of energy. A lack of energy from both the teams and the fans:

“We had no energy. The stadium had no energy. The fans had no energy. Overall, it was a pretty bad game for everybody who calls themselves Dodgers.”

Hernandez, a fan favorite and a bright guy, is likely aware that there’s no winning when a player calls out his own fan base, so after he had a night to sleep on it, he decided to clarify and apologize for his comments.

First a joke:

Then a more thorough statement:

As these things tend to go, if the Dodgers win tonight, all will be forgotten. If they don’t, well, it’ll likely still be mostly forgotten because Dodgers fans aren’t likely to be anywhere near as upset with Hernandez as they are with the team as a whole.

Still, the sentiments will likely be appreciated.