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Baltimore Orioles television play-by-play announcer Kevin Brown will be reading a statement that may finally address a nearly two-week absence that has drawn the ire of hometown fans and fellow broadcasters when he returns to the booth tonight, OutKick has learned.
There’s no indication as to what Brown will say, but the baseball community has been looking for answers ever since the Orioles TV voice was reportedly suspended for what were universally viewed as innocuous on-air comments about the team’s past performance.
The entire situation has only become more confusing and bizarre as the Orioles organization – which has been led by John Angelos since his 94-year-old father Peter was deemed medically incapacitated to handle operations – refuses to give any significant information.
IS IT MORE THAN JUST THE RAYS SITUATION?
The Orioles never confirmed that Brown was ever suspended despite reports that he was taken off the air due to comments the Orioles leadership allegedly thought were demeaning. The team says it’s a personal matter, while Awful Announcing and The Athletic say that Brown was suspended due to his July 23rd pregame comments regarding the Orioles record against the Rays while playing in Tampa, comments that were made only to show how good the first-place Orioles have been this season.
Granted, there could be something more to the story that we don’t know, something that happened behind the scenes that nobody has reported. Perhaps, as the team has said, it really is a personal matter and is unrelated to the team or its broadcasts.
The Orioles and broadcaster MASN – which is partly owned by the team – haven’t responded to multiple requests for comment from Outkick.
HERE’S WHAT WE KNOW
- Brown’s last MASN television broadcast was on July 23rd.
- He then went and did radio PBP in the next Orioles series against the Philadelphia Phillies before being entirely absent from broadcasts
- Awful Announcing reported earlier this week that sources told them that Brown was suspended from MASN due to comments he made during his final TV broadcast on the 23rd. The team reportedly viewed his comments as being disparaging. Brown’s comments were also visualized by a pre-made graphic as well as were listed in that day’s physical “Game Notes” that are available to all press members.
- The Orioles have never confirmed that Brown was suspended.
- In a statement to Awful Announcing, the team said that “We don’t comment on employment decisions, however, Kevin Brown will be back with us in the near future.”
- In a follow up statement, the team told Awful Announcing that they “don’t comment on personal matters” and “we look forward to hearing Kevin’s voice soon.”
The Orioles aren’t doing themselves any favors with their silence.
The Brown situation has taken a life of its own and I’m not quite sure ownership realizes just how bad the optics are.
Think I’m wrong? You don’t have to believe me, just listen to the sound of tens of thousands of Orioles fans screaming “Free Kevin Brown” at Camden Yards on Wednesday. This clip by the way has been viewed over TWO AND A HALF MILLION TIMES.
Maybe the Angelos should have opened their Camden suite glass windows to get a better listen of what exactly the fanbase, the hard-working families that pay to support their team, have to say about the whole embarrassing situation.
The Orioles fanbase aren’t the only ones that are angry. Legendary broadcasters have made their opinions on the situation loud and clear.
Last night you had Al Michaels – Mr. “Do You Believe In Miracles” himself – calling for the suspension of whomever suspended Kevin Brown.
New York broadcast greats Michael Kay of the Yankees and Gary Cohen of the Mets also chimed in saying that if indeed the suspension was true that it was ridiculous. Chris “Mad Dog” Russo didn’t hold back either.
Hell, even Paige Spiranac is mad! Look what you’ve done now, John Angelos.
I swear the people in charge try to make commentating as boring as possible. No jokes or fun and now you can’t even say facts— Paige Spiranac (@PaigeSpiranac) August 8, 2023
Unfortunately what I see happening is Kevin Brown getting the brunt of all of this and taking one for the team – the same team that may likely have suspended him – be it for this or whatever else.
Newsflash to owners out there – today’s social media age has changed the way fans interact with their team. They want real opinions, they want their broadcasters to be critical when needed, and they want them to be excited when the team is rolling. To start suspending or taking them off air as if its a Chinese state-run media channel would be laughable if it wasn’t so serious.
Despite all of this however, in the end the same point remains – why would an ownership ever want to bring a distraction and a PR debacle to their organization when everything was going so well? Or, almost everyting.
We’ll hopefully learn more tonight after Kevin Brown reads a statement on the whole ordeal. OutKick will have more coverage of the Orioles – Mariners game Friday night.
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